L&F has received a proposal and is considering it. Let’s hope the decisions are not made in the back rooms… that a proposal is released and vetted by the public, modified in response, and that the final scheme can be embraced by all of us.
“Possible tax break for woodlot owners” reads the title for an article by Aaron Beswick in the CH Dec 18, 2018 (subscription required)
With the province implementing many of the Lahey report’s recommendations for cutting on Crown land, the available fibre easily accessible to industry is set to go down.
That is unless the industry is able to access more wood from private land….
“The existing woodlot program provides landowners with the necessary tools to voluntarily implement their objectives through sustainable forest treatments, managing for all values with independent guidance and quality assurance,” reads the pitch from The Nova Scotia Landowners and Forest Fibre Producers Association….The association’s pitch would see all woodlot owners in the province be able to register their properties on a website
…The site, Mywoodlot.ca, would be fed information on each woodlot created during a site visit from a forester. It would also include a custom management plan based on the values of the woodlot owners.
…Certain values in line with the Lahey report recommendations would be encouraged through favourable access to silviculture funding. Woodlot owners would get a property tax break for actively managing their woodlots to supply the province’s forest industry.
As well, the site anticipates the creation of the selling of carbon offsets to industry through the cap and trade system for carbon being implemented in Nova Scotia. This would allow woodlot owners a new revenue stream.
It sounds like a constructive approach, but… I have some concern that woodlot owners who genuinely want to keep their forested land as it is for conservation purposes, even if it is not yet mature enough to get carbon credits, should not be penalized.
The scheme should provide an even playing field for the realization of Conservation-Harvesting-Carbon Storage goals; there should be safeguards to ensure that it does not turn out to be a scheme that intensifies clearcutting on private lands.
Also, I think that it should not be entirely dependent on tax breaks and grants to finance it – wood buyers should be taxed on their purchases with that tax going into the overall management fund, or something like that.
The article says that L&F has received the proposal and is considering it. Let’s hope the decisions are not made in the back rooms… that a proposal is released and vetted by the public, modified in response, and that the final scheme can be embraced by all of us.
Thank you Kingsley Brown and The Nova Scotia Landowners and Forest Fibre Producers Association for initiating the process.
GF: Gary Fisher Does wood buyers mean consumers will be taxed at the gross gate sales at places like Kent’s? This spreads the taxable base and not just a few wood buyers of round product. It also insures a level playing field for imported lumber.
DP: Good concept