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Boundary Waters Canoe Area History Center™

1979 History

1979, Locals
Zabinski representing the "Alliance" presents Quie with legal brief requesting state to file lawsuit against federal govt. on BWCA bill.

Jan. 1979, Dept. of Ag.
Rejects 11 Minnesota Areas near BWCAW as potential future wildernesses under RARE II citing local opposition and noting that some other candidate areas were included in the 1978 law.

Jan. 1979, State
State DFL Senator Doug Johnson introduces bill in legislature calling for state funded BWCA advisory committee overwhelmingly weighed towards locals.

Jan. 1979, Friends
Form task group to investigate and publicize impact of acid rain in BWCAW.

Feb. 1979, State
Legislative committee approves 15 to 3 Johnson's bill to form BWCA Adv. Task Force and to fund it.

Feb. 1979, State
Quie announces reappointment of Alexander as head of DNR.

Feb. 1979, State
Quie, Obarstar meet to consider merits of lawsuit to void 1978 law.

Mar. 1979, Locals
Seek to oust State Forester Sando on spurious grounds. (Sando had previously conducted an assessment of state timber which established that the paper industry did not need BWCA timber and had called for sealed bids on state timber sales.)

Apr. 1979, Locals
Hire Den Wallis, attorney for Natl. Assoc. of Property Owners (An organization of persons owning property adjacent to federal land). Pressure state to join in suit to overturn 1978 law.

Apr. 1979, Locals
Kainz Logging Co. receives $110,000 from U.S.Government for cancelled timber sale.  Goes back into business.

Apr. 1979, State
Gov. Quie approves Alexander action for state to challenge 1978 law despite opinion of State District Attorney's office that the case is "Without merit". Alexander says "suit not political".

Apr. 1979, Scientists
First EPA report issued confirming acid rain is making BWCA lakes infertile.

May 1979, State
State Forester Sando resigns under pressure.

May 1979, Canada
Ends motor use in Quetico Superior.

May 1979, State
Legislature approves state-runded BWCA-Advisory Task Force in last minute maneuver.

June 1979, Congress
Increases $10.6 million fund approved earlier to pay for impact of 1978 bill by $3.3 million for timber industry.

June 1979, State
Alexander hires attorney Wayne Olson (former DNR Head) to represent state in BWCA suit.

July 1979, Locals
Seek to publicize fact that lack of gasoline no problem in Ely. Citing this as reason for fail-off in tourist trade (Tourist trade dropped throughout state this season.)

July 1979, Locals
Wallis, attorney hired by Alliance, asks for temporary restraining order on implementation of 1978 law in Washington, D.C. in an unadvertised action.  Sierra Club, hearing of action through chance, intervenes. Action denied.

July 1979, Locals
Demand investigation of possible relationship between Department of Agriculture and Sierra Club on basis of intervention. Their Rep., Oberstar, finds no collusion.

Aug. 1979, Locals
Refiled temporary restraining order on 1978 law in Duluth. U.S. Magistrate McNulty, hears case; denies restraining order citing no proof of cause.

Aug. 1979, Friends
Hold party to commemorate preservation work of William H. Magie. As head of "Friends of the Wilderness" he blocked air travel into BWCA in 1949. Fought in every battle since 1925.

Aug. 1979, State
Gov. Quie announces appointments to BWCA Advisory Task Force. (Nine from N.E. Minn.--Eight from rest of state.)

Oct. 1979, Dept. of Ag.
Forest Service releases names of ten resorts requesting buyout under 1973 law.

Nov. 1979, Friends
Cosponsor first International Acid Rain Conference in Toronto. Over 700 attendees. Agreement reached that Acid Rain is serious problem and to encourage series of regional conferences.

Dec. 1979, State
Sues U.S. Govt. over BWCAW water jurisdiction after several months of threatening to do so.

Dec. 1979, Conservationists
Twelve environmental groups intervene on side of U.S. in State BWCAW suit.

Written by H.C. Johnson, M.L. Heinselman, E.M. Sitz

An outline of Boundary Waters Canoe Area History

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Published from the edge of the Boundary Waters
Canoe Area by Chad Jones

Updated Aug 26, 2016


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