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State land preservation fund spending curtailed

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The state Department of Natural Resources has notified local governments and conservation groups that land preservation spending is being temporarily curtailed while the fund is under review.

DNR Division of Lands administrator Kurt Thiede said the review is part of Gov. Scott Walker’s order for all agencies to re-evaluate spending.

The Knowles-Nelson Stewardship Fund has preserved more than 600,000 acres of land, including recreational areas in northern Wisconsin. Local governments and private land trusts apply for matching grants from the fund to buy land they want to protect.

The State Journal reports a memo from the DNR says Walker remains committed to the Stewardship Fund, but says the state needs to act now to alleviate the “immediate fiscal crisis.” According to the DNR, only the highest priorities will move forward.

Information from: Wisconsin State Journal, http://www.madison.com/wsj

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