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Bemidji Northen Log: Wednesday, November 23, 1977 - Page 1

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   Northen Log, The (Newspaper) - November 23, 1977, Bemidji, Minnesota                                A North Country NEWSpaper Published in combination with THE PIONEER, Bemidji, Mi WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 23, 1977 On the inside Wood chips Cancer answers EPS program children Appetizers are easy party hit the road Alternatives P-3 p. 4 P-5 'p. 10 p. 11 Featuring correspondents from the outlying communities Payments in lieu of Public lands: An asset or liability OF STATE LONG RANGE PAYMENTS IN LIEU OF TAXES FOR NATURAL RESOURCE LANDS (FISCAL 1975I1 By JERKY DOGGETT licgional Editor Editor's note: This is the last In a three-part series reviewing the efforts to pass "payments in lieu of taxes" legislation, "Our whole argument is that bur tax base is eroded by the huge amounts of federal and state lands in our said Rep. Irv Anderson (International one of several northern legislators pressing for payments in .lieu of taxes legislation. But there are a number of rebuttals to that argument, including special payments that are already being made to local governments and benefits that occur through tourism and governmental employment. Which is greater? For those counties affected, are public lands an asset or a liability? The Phase I study of the Legilsative Commission on Minnesota Resources the reference authority for those considering payments in lieu of (axes legislation, has arrived at these "Principal observations and resource lands which attract people bring with them increased governmental service demands. However, these increased activities also enhance the local economy (hence tax base) and tend to increase private property values. principal governmental services commonly provided to public natural resource land include road construction and maintenance, fire protection, and police protection These service costs are at least partially compensated for through direct payments, direct services, service contracts, and indirect categorical state and federal aid. dependence on governmental employment as an economic base appears to be directly increased by the existence of state and federal natural resource lands. Those lands which are recreationally oriented also increase employment in the tourist industry. these impacts are not quantifiable, local communities benefit from stale and federal natural resource lands through: (a) increased recreational opportunites, (b) public land management, and (c) preserved amenities." Many of these benefits defy accurate measurement. However, local governments are receiving some direct payments in lieu of taxes from the slate's Game and Fish Fund, the Consolidated Conservalion Areas Fund. Hie Slate Forest Fund and.from mining royalties on tax-forfeited lands. (See map.) Beltrami County appears in a uniquely favorable status, being the only county in the slate to receive monies under all four of Ihose funds. But that's a deceptive uniqueness, the total of those four accounts amounting to only a year for (he counly's more lhan acres of stale and lax-forfeited lands. The bulk of thai figure, of it, comes from the Consolidated Conservalion Areas Fund, which is divided 40 per ccnl lo Bcllrami Counly school districts, 30 per cent lo the county development fund, 20 per cent lo the counly's general fund and 10 per (Continued on page 2) Stale Forost Fond Game iind Fish Fund Mineral Tax-Foflciled Land Unique status On this map, a purl of the LCMH study, Bultrnini County appears In a uniquely favorable status, being the only county in the state to receive monies under all four funds now established by the slate. But that totals only Ibc county's more than acres of state and lax-forfeited lands. Growing corn in Beltrami County may not be such a corny idea Pioneer photo by Greg Booth Dav'5 shows some of tlic corn he grew unrortimatrl.v for Davis, much of his corn is sli11 "wailing to he harvested due to Ihe unexpected blizzard which prohibits driving in the field. By HAKVKV MttYHK Staff Writer Corn will prohiihly never replace hay as Hie staple crop in Beltrami Counly. But it is making headway. Corn isn't so noticeable around the Uemidji city limits since the sandy soil makes growth prohibitive. But out about 10-15 miles north, away from the sandy deposits left by a glacier, there arc more Fanners trying their luck at it Hum ever before, said Jim Sackeltc, adult Farm management instructor. Sackclt, whose job is lo assist Farmers in all phases of farm management, is especially pleased with the corn crop this year. Sacked estimated the corn crop in Beltrami County this year nearly tripled what was grown in 1973 when acres wore urown. Sacked says one of the major reasons For the boost in corn production is the improved varieties of hybrid corn, which matures earlier in a short growing season. Sackett says one of Ihe major reasons for the boost in corn production is the improved varieties of hybrid corn, which matures earlier in a short growing season. Another contributing factor is that low oat and wheat prices and the high cost oF purchasing corn motivated Farmers to try growing their own corn. In addition. Sacked said, farmers are seeing the benefits of using more commercial fertiliser and chemical weed control. And farm implement dealers are noticing that more farmers in the area are in VPS I ing in planting and harvesting equipment. Many fanners in the area are just dabbling with a corn crop oF 10-20 acres, or enough lo feed iheir livestock over Ihe winter. But others, like John Davis are going full-throttle. Davis grew 340 acres of corn this year, hoping to cash in on what looked like a good corn price this spring. But Ihe com price plummeted from per bushel in Ihe spring to less than per bushel this fall. And to make things worse, 320 acres are still in the field, waiting for frozen ground so heavy equipment can harvest it. "I'm completely satisfied with my corn crop this year. "Davis said. "I think we ran raise corn ycar-in and year-out. Although unsure of this year's corn crop, Davis said, "we'll gut her eventually." Davis, who lasl year grew ISO acres nf corn, also expressed surprise at Ihe number if people raising corn in Beltrami County. "1 think people are using fertilizers a little nmrc, and the overall farm management of the farms is Davis said. George Koch, who last year was named Beltrami County dairy famrer of the year, raised acres of corn this year. Although hardly matching (he amount of corn grown in sou ilia'n Minnesota, it is an abnormal amount for Beltrami County. Besides having suitable farmland for growing corn, Koch's new high moisture corn silo which is another reason for growing more corn. Koch previously stored his corn in a cement silo. However, the corn didn't ferment properly in thai structure. With the high moisture unit, Koch said, he is a little more confident of his corn crop paying dividcnds-namcly making high protein food for his cat lie. Another farmer, Bob Paine, increased his corn product ion by 30 per cent over last year. Paine is raising corn lo feed his hogs. Paine also has a high moisture unit which retains corn nutrients while speeding lip the Fattening of his hogs. "Possibly we weren't growing the right type of corn in the Paine said in explaining why he thinks the corn crop is higher this year in Beltrami Counly. While noting the corn crop Ihis year, Sackett cautioned farmers that growing corn in a northern climate is still risky. Sackett said the worst enemy corn faces in Bellrami County is lack of moisture. Bui be said more irrigation would greatly enhance future corn crops. Sacked said Belli ami Counly farmers should expect 80-100 bushels' per in a normal year. "Partners who do not do a good job of planting corn or fail to fertilize or fail lo control weeds will not sec yields Mini he said. Farmers are coming to realize that RO bushels per acre of corn is better than BO acres per bushel of oats because livestock eat pounds not bushels, he (Contained on page 2) ffa0 JUV n- Pioneer photo by Greg Booth Inb I'ainc examines his corn roller mill which cks the corn and delivers it to the hogs.   

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