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Idaho to Auction Cabin Lease Sites at Priest Lake

flickr.com, Gary Koeling

BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Idaho will begin competitive auctions for leases of its 354 state-owned cabin sites on Priest Lake. The move, reported Tuesday in the Spokesman-Review, comes as annual rents on these properties at this pristine northern Idaho lake are due to skyrocket by 84 percent.

This spike means some people whose families have vacationed on these so-called “cottage sites” — where many families have built comfortable vacation homes — may not be able to afford to continue, even if they don’t face a challenger.

Bud Belles, whose family has enjoyed trips to the lake cabin since 1948, says his lease payment would go up to $19,000, from $8,700 now. Idaho State Department of Lands director Tom Schultz estimates anywhere from 8 percent to 30 percent of existing lease holders may default.

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