Cross-border dispute

North Dakota State Roundup

Published May 1, 2005  | May 2005 issue

A fishing and wildlife bill in the Minnesota Legislature appears to be retaliation against North Dakota hunting practices for out-of-staters.

Minnesota Senate bill SF655 would restrict fishing by nonresidents. During the first two weeks of walleye season, only Minnesotans would be allowed to fish. After that, nonresidents would only be allowed a seven-day fishing license, at a cost of $100.

The effort came during work on the larger Omnibus Game and Fish bill.

The move is a reaction to North Dakota's policy of restricting the first week of duck hunting season to state residents only. The Minnesota bill would apply only to states or provinces that restrict hunting and fishing by Minnesotans.

The State of Minnesota has also filed an interstate commerce lawsuit against North Dakota over the issue.

The bill is not likely to get past a hearing, so it is probably intended to get the issue into the open. A senator who refused to coauthor the bill said it is an attempt to intimidate North Dakota into ending its policy on nonresident hunting.

Joe Mahon