Conceived of and convened by VNRC in 2006, the Roundtable is a venue for the exchange of information relating to forest policy, and keeping Vermont’s forests as forests, with particular attention focused on addressing parcelization and forest fragmentation.
VNRC’s goal as convener of the Roundtable has been to create an open forum to which people with a wide range of perspectives could exchange information and, where possible, develop recommendations for policy changes.
The Roundtable has grown in participation and interest, with close to 250 people now tracking its progress. Participants have included conservation groups, consulting foresters, professional planners, government officials, landowner organizations, outdoor recreation and sporting interests, representatives from the forest products industry, legislators, staff from Vermont’s congressional delegation, and researchers and professors.
Roundtable meetings have addressed multiple topics, including trends in Vermont’s real estate market and rising forestland values, property tax policy, land use and conservation planning, estate planning, landowner incentive programs such as the Current Use Program, carbon markets, public lands management, biomass policy, and the long-term sustainability of the forest products industry.
Honoring Steve Sinclair
At the Summer 2018 meeting of the Forest Roundtable, VNRC’s Forest and Wildlife Program Director Jamey Fidel presented Steve Sinclair with an award for his long-standing dedication to Vermont’s forests, and to the Roundtable itself.
As Director of Forests at the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation, Steve was a critical partner in implementing many of the Roundtable’s recommendations, including VNRC’s research on subdivision trends in Vermont’s forests and promoting planning to help landowners keep their forestland intact.
“VNRC has done a tremendous job trying to bring all voices to the table, getting all sectors involved, and making them heard,” said Steve, who retired in 2018 after 43 years with the Department. We spoke with him about the Roundtable’s history, its biggest accomplishments, and more. Read the Q&A here.
“Steve was there from the very beginning, and believed in the power of partnerships to achieve the goal of keeping forests as forests,” says Fidel.
For more information about the Forest Roundtable, contact Jamey Fidel, Forests & Wildlife Program Director at VNRC, at [email protected] or 802-223-2328, x117.