US Interior's Salazar Tours Minnesota
The U.S. Secretary of the Interior visited Minnesota where he joined Gov. Mark Dayton for a Mississippi River boat tour.
The tour left Friday morning from the St. Paul Yacht Club in downtown St. Paul. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and Dayton was joined by Minnesota's Natural Resources commissioner as they cruise the Mississippi National River and Recreation area.
The two talked about conservation and water quality, but with an election season coming up they also talked jobs. According to Secretary Salazar, 6 million jobs are created each year in the U.S. in the outdoor recreation industry.
"People who want to take away the money from conservation frankly are missing the boat, they don't understand that conservation and economics and quality of life and job creation are the same thing," said Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar.
Minnesota is still a major contributor of pollutants to the Mississippi River; but Governor Dayton explained to Salazar just how much cleaner the river has become in the past 40 years.
"I remember saying by the time it got to Minneapolis, you had a restriction on eating the fish. So that's us that's Minnesota there's no one else that it could be a part of that. So we've done a tremendous progress on that," said Governor Mark Dayton.
According to the National Park Service, 9 million people visit the Mississippi River National Recreation area each year. They hope to encourage more people to take advantage of recreating on the river.
Salazar is also holding a town hall meeting at the University of Minnesota. His visit is part of a four-state tour meant to highlight an Obama Administration initiative to enhance conservation efforts, encourage outdoor recreation opportunities and create jobs.