Transfer to tribe heats up
BY JILL DENNING GACKLE
BHG News Service
In the first time in nine years, a state agency is again going on record as being concerned about a possible transfer of thousands of acres that could be transferred to the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation.
Game and Fish Director Terry Steinwand said last week the transfer would include thousands of acres of public land managed for fish, wildlife and recreation and would jeopardize free access to numerous boat ramps within the middle third of the reservoir.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was asked by the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation July 26, 2012, to transfer all land above 1,854 mean sea level within the reservation to the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, to be held in trust for the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation.
The Game and Fish Department leases from the Corps and manages for wildlife approximately 7,000 acres within the proposed area, including Van Hook and Deepwater Creek wildlife management areas. In addition, more than 29,000 acres of Corps land that is currently open to public hunting and fishing could also be transferred, according to Game & Fish officials.