- Associated Press - Saturday, August 19, 2017

YANKTON, S.D. (AP) - A city in southeast South Dakota is considering giving a portion of city-owned land to the National Park Service to provide additional access to the Missouri National Recreational River.

The Yankton City Commission discussed a proposal Monday to draft an agreement for transferring more than 30 acres of land on the Nebraska side of the Missouri River to the park service. The land is home to two water wells for the city, an access road and a hiking trail, the Press & Dakotan reported .

Under any agreement, Yankton would still maintain the water wells located on the Nebraska side, with rights to add a third.

River Superintendent Rick Clark said that getting the land could be a huge boost to the park’s ability to obtain funding for trail improvements.

“It gives us the wherewithal to tap into federal dollars by virtue of ownership that, otherwise, is not possible,” Clark said. “We can apply for cyclic, or repair-rehab funds, that would enable us to upgrade that trail system to NPS standards and really integrate that whole system.”

Clark said this would also connect to land the park service already owns.

“The National Park Service acquired the Green Island area - including the mainland portion - back in 2014 as part of mitigation or the Discovery Bridge,” he said. “We’d really like to improve that area.”

According to Clark, even if an agreement is approved, any changes will take a while to implement.

No action was taken on the proposal during the Monday meeting.


Information from: Yankton Press and Dakotan, https://www.yankton.net/

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