Spearfish Canyon land swap tabled because of state budget

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Lower than-expected state revenue projections have derailed Governor Dennis Daugaard's plans to turn Spearfish Canyon into a state park.

Wednesday morning the Joint Committee on Appropriations rejected Daugaard's $2.5 million request for a land swap between the state Office of School and Public Lands and the U.S. Forest Service.

Public opposition to the land swap was strong in the area after Daugaard announced his plan in January.

The land exchange could have led to the creation of a 1,600 acre state park in the Little Spearfish Canyon area.

Foresting consultant Frank Carroll is one of the many people who is happy Senate Bill 114 has been tabled.

Professional Forest Management Co-owner Frank Carroll says, "We appreciate the governor asking the committee to table the legislation. We very much appreciate the Joint Appropriations Committee voting unanimously this morning to table it. We were there and everybody that was there was in opposition to the bill and so clearly we think they did the right thing."

While the tabling of Bill 114 means the land swap is dead for now, it could be revived at a later date if the state's financial situation changes.