The Indiana Natural
Resources Commission dedicated two new nature preserve sites on Tuesday.
The new sites: the
Mark and Myrna Peterson Nature Preserve in LaGrange County and an addition
to the Lubbe Woods Nature Preserve in Dearborn County.
Peterson site is adjacent to Olin Lake Nature Preserve and protects
undeveloped shoreline on Oliver Lake. The 34.9-acre Lubbe Woods addition
protects examples of old growth forest. Both sites provide habitat for a
number of species which are state endangered or of special concern.
In other actions,
the NRC did the following:
* Approved tour
pricing for Little Wyandotte Cave and Big Wyandotte Cave in Harrison County.
Both caves have been closed since 2009 but are scheduled to re-open for
tours this summer following the completion of site renovations. The standard
fee for a one-hour walking tour will be $4 for children ages 6-11 and $8 for
adults (12 and older). Fees increase with longer tours.
* Amended its
policy on citizen petitions for administrative rule changes by requiring
petitioners to explain or justify the proposed action and by establishing a
24-month waiting period between petitions for the same rule change.
* Agreed to let
expire a rule (312 IAC 6.5) that assists with the registration of off-road
vehicles and snowmobiles. The rule will become obsolete on Jan. 1, 2017,
when sections of Indiana Code 14-16-1 expire since registration requirements
are under the authority of the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles.
In other business
on Tuesday, the NRC heard a report from the DNR Division of Fish & Wildlife
on citizen petitions to extend the pheasant hunting season, to allow
multiple turkeys to be taken in the spring wild turkey hunting season, and
to open the fall firearm season for wild turkey to statewide. The NRC
approved the divisionís decision not to proceed with these petitions and to
include additional citizen petitions in the divisionís next biennial rule
revision process, which will begin in April.
Finally, DNR State
Parks and Fish & Wildlife introduced several new assistant managers to the
NRC, including Mickey Rea at Indiana Dunes State Park.