Ted Turner purchases more grazing land in Nebraska


BY Paul Hammel, Omaha World-Herald

via The North Platte Telegraph (NE) - Dec 1, 2018


LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) A decade ago, billionaire bison rancher Ted Turner said his appetite for buying more grazing land in Nebraska was likely satisfied.


But now the state's largest private landowner, and second-largest individual landowner in the U.S., has surprised some people by purchasing another Sand Hills ranch, putting his holdings in Nebraska past the half-million-acre mark.


Turner's ranching enterprise recently bought the 15,055-acre Kime Ranch, a Sand Hills spread surrounded on three sides by other ranches owned by the founder of CNN, including the first property he bought in Nebraska 23 years ago, the Spikebox Ranch.


With the purchase, that ranch now encompasses 141,149 acres, and his seven holdings in Nebraska total 506,935 acres, the Omaha World-Herald reported. That is area more than twice the size of Douglas County.


The 2 million acres of land he owns in the U.S. ranks Turner just behind John Malone, Liberty Media's chairman, as the nation's largest private landowner.


The new Nebraska deal has renewed questions about the future of land owned by Turner, 80, who recently announced that he was suffering from Lewy body dementia, the same disease that afflicted actor Robin Williams in the last years of his life.


Will the land become a huge series of wildlife parks? A gift to a wildlife organization? Would it go off the tax rolls, leaving other ranches to shoulder local property taxes?


"I think there's a lot of people who wonder what he's going to do with it," said former State Sen. Al Davis of Hyannis, who owns land adjacent to one of Turner's six Nebraska ranches. "People are not enthused about it being owned by a quasi-public entity. Most people would prefer that it remains in private hands."


A spokesman for Turner Enterprises said...