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The future of Woodbury public land is the topic of debate at county's conservation meeting

The future of Woodbury public land is the topic of debate at county's conservation meeting.

A lawyer representing the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska spoke to the Woodbury County Conservation Board about what the tribe plans to to do with land near Snyder Bend and Bago Bend if a bill in Congress to transfer that land back to the tribe is approved.

Legal council Danelle Smith of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska had this to say about what was said in the meeting, "what I think that we found today is that our goals are very much aligned, and with an open dialogue and an open communication we can figure out how to work together and can figure out how to make this beneficial for everyone."

The bill to return the land is sponsored by Iowa Congressman Steve King and Nebraska's Jeff Fortenberry, but the board once again deferred taking a vote on where it stands on the issue with members saying they want to discuss it more.

Rick Schneider, conservation director had some words about the difficulty the process is foreseeing at the moment, "The areas been in public ownership and public use for forty some years. It's tough to see that go to a private entity and lose a lot of public access there so that's what they are going to be wrestling with."

The tribe says the public will continue to be welcome on the land for hikes but the tribe will require a permit for hunting.

Their attorney says any of their permits will be similarly priced to current Iowa permits.

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