The Department of Natural Resources (DNR) manages a number of different categories of land, each for a specific purpose and under different management requirements. These include approximately 3 million acres of federally-granted lands and state forest lands, which DNR manages to support common schools, counties, and other public institutions.
DNR has the authority to lease state lands for commercial, industrial, residential, agricultural, and recreational uses to obtain a fair-market rental return to the state or appropriate trust.
DNR generally may not lease state lands for longer than ten years, although longer leases are specifically authorized in multiple instances. Lands leased for agricultural purposes may not exceed 25 years, except leases for tree fruit or grape production, which may be for up to 55 years. Share crop leases may not exceed ten years. Leases for commercial, industrial, business, or recreational purposes may also be for up to 55 years.
The maximum length of a lease of land managed by DNR where the purpose of the lease is for commercial, industrial, business, or recreational purposes, may extend to 99 years.