Grazing Fees Could Rise on State-Owned Land in Idaho
Grazing fees for cattle and sheep on state-owned land in Idaho could rise about 50%.
By Keih Ridler, Associated Press
via U.S. News & World Report - July 20, 2021
BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Grazing fees for cattle and sheep on state-owned land in Idaho could rise about 50% next year.
The Idaho Department of Lands on Tuesday presented a draft proposal to Republican Gov. Brad Little and four other members of the Idaho Land Board that would be the first change in the grazing rate calculation since 1993. The board could take action later this year.
Land Board members are required by the Idaho Constitution to maximize profit from state lands over the long term, mainly to benefit public schools. But grazing fees the state charges are only about a third of what private landowners charge. That opens up Land Board members to potential lawsuits for possibly shirking their constitutional duty.
The new grazing rate would still only be about 60% of what private landowners currently charge.
The Idaho Department of Lands is taking public comments on the plan through Sept. 3.
The Lands Department is seeking to “develop a new model for grazing that's transparent, defensible and achieves a fair-market rate for endowment beneficiaries,” said Lands Department Director Dustin Miller...