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Public hearing in Brainerd to discuss delisting wolves

Web posted June 18, 2019
A public hearing will be held June 25 in Brainerd to receive public input on a proposal to remove the gray wolf from the federal endangered species list.

The formal hearing and opportunity to testify will take place from 6:30-9 p.m. at the Franklin Arts Center Auditorium, 1001 Kingwood St. The United States Fish and Wildlife Service staff will be available during an  open house period beginning at 5 p.m. to informally discuss the proposal and answer questions.

“The state of Minnesota has a comprehensive and proven wolf management plan,” state Rep. Dale Lueck, R-Aitkin, said. “The plan exceeds all the federal requirements to ensure the wolf never becomes an endangered species again in Minnesota. The wolf has been delisted in Minnesota several times in the past, but was returned to federal protection by court action initiated by groups that believe the wolf should not be removed from federal protection. Wolves in Minnesota have met the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service delisting recovery plan requirements for several decades.

“The recovery of the wolf in Minnesota and the Midwest is a huge success story. Minnesotans have worked hard to recover the wolf and ensure they will always be a valued part of our state’s outdoor heritage. This action is long overdue and would rightly return wolf management back to Minnesota.”

This is an opportunity for the citizens of Minnesota to provide formal testimony on this process. Written comments will also be accepted at the hearing. In addition to the public hearing, citizens have until July 15 to file online regarding the plan to remove federal protections for wolves across the Great Lakes and other areas where they exist. For more information, or to comment on the plan, go to www.fws.gov/home/wolfrecovery/.

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