ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Officials with the Department of Natural Resources are touting Gov. Mark Dayton’s proposal to boost funding for fish, wildlife, outdoors and enforcement programs, including more conservation officers.

DNR officials said Thursday that their goals include improving fish population surveys, creating more forest wildlife habitat, helping landowners improve grassland and prairie habitat, improving the monitoring and management of wildlife populations, and creating more opportunities to help kids and families get outside.

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The DNR’s enforcement chief, Col. Ken Soring, says the budget includes money to fill 11 out of 22 vacant conservation officer positions statewide.

Fish and Wildlife chief Ed Boggess says the money for proposed spending increases would come mostly from the state’s gave and fish fund plus reimbursements from federal excise taxes on outdoor gear and marine fuels.

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