Skip to main content

Landowners fight to stop state from selling mineral rights out from under them

Some people in northern Minnesota are finding that while they own their homes and land, they don't necessarily own the minerals below. Now they're trying to stop state officials from giving mining companies the rights to drill on their property. The state routinely sells land while holding on to the mineral rights. Leasing those rights can bring the state tens of millions of dollars a year.
  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

Some people in northern Minnesota are finding that while they own their homes and land, they don't necessarily own the minerals below. Now they're trying to stop state officials from giving mining companies the rights to drill on their property. The state routinely sells land while holding on to the mineral rights. Leasing those rights can bring the state tens of millions of dollars a year.

Next Up

WCCO building

Digital, streaming employees at WCCO-TV vote to unionize

The 15 employees will join on-air talent and producers as members of the SAG-AFTRA union.

unnamed-3

Police arrest man suspected of sexual assault, weapons threat in Eagan

The investigation prompted a SWAT response in an Eagan neighborhood on Tuesday.

covid

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for the week ending Tuesday, August 16

The latest reporting period averaged just under 1,300 new cases per day.

USATSI_12923669

Jason and Carly Zucker sell Edina home for $4.18M

The property was bought in 2020, months after Jason Zucker was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Legacy Lot Random (1 of 6)

Gallery: Luxury living is par for the course here

Cragun’s Golf Resort Communities Offer Stunning Views Along with Resort-Style Living

Screen Shot 2022-08-18 at 8.10.56 AM

Restrictions in place as Emerald Ash Borer found in Sherburne County

The county is now the 36th in the state with a confirmed presence of the invasive insect.

Fire, firefighters

Home that was scene of June standoff engulfed in fire

Authorities arrived to find the home fully ablaze.

Rosland park bridge

Crosstown Hwy. 62 reopens as footage emerges of truck hitting bridge

The westbound lanes were closed in Edina from Tuesday afternoon to Wednesday night.

Screen Shot 2022-08-17 at 8.31.42 PM

Flash flooding as torrential rain hammers Cambridge

Flooding and damage from a non-severe storm Wednesday evening.

Screen Shot 2022-08-17 at 4.02.18 PM

Minneapolis nonprofit celebrates anonymous donor's $1.5M gift

Appetite For Change is building sustainable, local food systems in North Minneapolis.

Related

State again delays decision on whether to lease private property to mining companies

Some residents were surprised and upset to learn that while they might own their land, they don’t own what’s under the surface. Laws dating to the 1870s allow the state to own the minerals under property owners' land. Gov. Dayton says the state is taking time out to reconsider the rules.

Critics of minerals exploration leases to file petition

Environmental advocates in northeastern Minnesota plan to file a petition with the DNR on Tuesday, taking issue with the state's plans to auction off more metallic minerals exploration leases, the Associated Press reports. Critics fear new prospecting and mining could dramatically endanger the environment, including drinking water, trout streams and recreation trails. About 140 have signed it, but it wasn't immediately clear what effect the petition might have on the leasing process.

Opponents seek review of state plan to auction mineral leases

Opponents of a state plan to auction off the mineral rights in three areas of northeastern Minnesota hope to force an environmental review. They'll file a petition Tuesday asking the DNR to study the effects of mineral prospecting in the areas. They say it could affect water quality and property values near the sites in St. Louis, Lake, and Aitkin Counties.

CEO of Miner's Inc. dies at age 77

Jim Miner Sr., the CEO of Hermantown-based Miner's Inc., died on Sunday. He was 77 years old. His funeral will be held on Thursday at Cathedral of Our Lady of the Rosary in Duluth.

U.S. House bill would require states to recognize conceal-carry permits from other states

Federal representatives are set to vote on a bill next week that could have a major affect on who can carry a gun in the state of Minnesota. Right now, the state only recognizes conceal-carry permits from 15 states. Safety officials say laws in neighboring states aren't similar enough to Minnesota's own laws to allow reciprocity.

Some Goodhue County landowners want to get out of wind turbine contracts

Several landowners have sent letters of termination to AWA Goodhue Wind. One of their concerns is the possible effect the turbines could have on wildlife. One Rochester resident says the turbines could disrupt the flight paths of migratory eagles and endanger the birds.

Cravaack pushes for controversial state-federal land swap

U.S. Representative Chip Cravaack introduced a bill ordering a state-federal exchange involving 41,000 acres of land within the Boundary Waters Canoe Area. It would free up land for logging or mining. Conservation groups are likely to push back against the plan.

State sells $769M in bonds for building, road projects

The bonds were sold at a historic low interest rate of 2.82 percent. The sale now brings the state’s bond debt total just under $6 million.