Proposal 1 is a very complicated constitutional amendment. The confusing ballot language seems intentionally designed to elicit a “yes” vote. It doesn’t even hint at its primary result: It will reduce funding to protect Michigan’s forests, wetlands, parks and wildlife habitats.

The Michigan Natural Resources Trust Fund was put into the Michigan Constitution in order to protect the fund from diversions and to ensure that its primary purpose remained to protect the land. We should not undo those protections in order to divert more money into recreational development.

The trust fund’s priority should remain the acquisition of land. That is the best way to benefit Michigan’s residents and wildlife, by providing perpetual benefits for generations to come.

The Michigan Land Conservancy recommends a “no” vote on Proposal 1. For more information visit

Jack Smiley is the president of the Michigan Land Conservancy and an alum of the University of Michigan Class of 1973 and can be reached at

This Letter to the Editor is written in response to The Michigan Daily Editorial Boards endorsement titled Vote yes on Proposals 1 and 2.