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President signs land swap deal

President Obama signed a bill into law Saturday that allows the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa and Carlton County to swap thousands of acres of land.

In exchange for 3,200 acres of reservation land that Carlton County currently owns, Fond du Lac will relinquish 1,451 acres of land off the reservation.

The bill is based on an agreement worked out several years ago by tribal and county leaders, said Carlton County Land Commissioner Greg Bernu. The exchanged property is estimated to be of equal value.

Congressman Rick Nolan wrote the U.S. House bill and U.S. Sen. Al Franken authored the Senate counterpart. Nolan says the legislation rectifies a promise broken by the federal government in the mid-1800s.

Editor’s note: Read last week’s Pine Journal for a detailed story on the land swap or visit