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Ecklund talks BWCA closure, ATV trails and solar energy on the Iron Range

Cook County businesses that suffered significant loss because of the recent Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness closure could be eligible for some financial assistance, according to local and state officials.

The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) is considering a request to the federal Small Business Administration for a declaration of economic injury from this summer’s BWCA fire closure.

To assess the need for an SBA disaster declaration, DEED needs affected businesses to complete this form.

Officials from DEED are working with people ranging from elected officials to area chamber of commerce representatives to gather data regarding the recent BWCA closure. Among them are Gov. Tim Walz and District 3A Rep. Rob Ecklund.

WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs spoke with Ecklund Sept. 30 about the BWCA closure and possible financial assistance for local businesses.

Other topics discussed during the interview include an update on the new DFL office in Ely, ATV trails and use in the region and a massive solar endeavor on the Iron Range. Audio below.