The Department of Natural Resources and Environment has reached an understanding with the Michigan State Employees Association (MSEA) that will allow it to work with communities to get cross-country ski trails groomed for the remainder of the ski season.
"I want to thank the MSEA for working cooperatively with us to resolve this issue," said DNRE Director Rebecca Humphries. "MSEA took in to consideration the impact that these trails have on local communities and businesses, and agreed that where we can partner with local volunteer organizations, we should allow for the safe grooming of ski trails."
The DNRE's forest recreation program is supported by General Fund dollars appropriated by the Legislature. However, due to General Fund budget cuts in the current state budget, the DNRE has limited ski trail grooming this year to 13 of the state’s 23 ski trails, using a combination of volunteer groups and local donations. At the trails that are not being groomed, the DNRE has kept parking areas at trailheads plowed so that skiers can still get on trails.
For more information on cross-country ski trails in Michigan's state forest system and state parks and recreation areas, visit the DNRE Web site at www.michigan.gov/dnre and click on "State Parks and Camping"
under the Outdoor Recreation menu and look for "Seasonal Recreation."
The DNRE is committed to conserve, manage, protect, and promote accessible use and enjoyment of the state's environmental, natural resource, and related economic interests for current and future generations.