MFPC newsletter March 2017

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‘Roadmap’ is now under construction

Our long-awaited and much-discussed “roadmap” for Maine’s forest economy is under construction now and it has a new name: the Forest Economic Growth Initiative. As proposed, this project would cost $2.4 million over three years. Phase 1 funding has been approved by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA), and an MTI grant will provide the 20 percent matching funds. An application for Phase 2 funding will be submitted to EDA in fall 2017. Read more.

With 6 weeks until deadline to report out bills, the pace picks up 
Although the 128th Legislature got off to a slow start, the pace has most definitely picked up. We are halfway through the session and bills are coming fast and furious. Many of these bills have had public hearings, but haven’t had work sessions yet. So with the deadline nearing to get bills out, the next six weeks will be incredibly busy. For brief updates on the major bills MFPC is following, read on.
2017 MFPC Legislative Reception was worth the wait!
Rep. Michelle Dunphy and Rep. Craig Hickman

After a huge snowstorm Feb. 9 forced postponement of MFPC’s 2017 Legislative Reception, we rescheduled for March 9 and it was worth the wait. Attendance was great, the conversation was lively and the buffet was terrific. MFPC members had a wonderful opportunity to talk with legislators – and vice versa. Special thanks to Office Manager Sue McCarthy who planned the event, took the photos and made everyone feel welcome. See more photos

Improving Maine’s Forests for 22 years
The Maine SIC Progress Report 2016-2017 details many of the projects that have helped Maine’s SFI Implementation Committee (SIC) continually improve forestry and harvesting practices. “It’s a very good report — highly readable”, said Sarah Medina of Seven Islands.
Maine’s Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) is celebrating its 22th year of promoting sustainable management of our state’s 17.6 million acres of forestland. The SIC includes landowners, loggers, mills, foresters, government agencies, conservation groups, management companies, recreation representatives, educators and researchers.
A Stream Crossing Restoration Techniques Workshop will be hosted by the Maine SFI Implementation Committee and Project SHARE  April 13 and 14, 2017 at the Bangor Motor Inn. (See agenda). The training is intended to be an interactive, hands-on workshop, emphasizing data analysis, preliminary design and hydraulics for culverts with natural bottoms. Read more.
Sign up now for MFPC Hall of Flags event! Tables for Forest Products Day at the Capitol’s Hall of Flags April 27 will fill up fast so contact Sue McCarthy today to reserve your spot. It’s a great way to showcase your business and Maine’s forest products industry. 
Barry Burgason (seated) with Wildlife Committee members Henning Stabins, John Gilbert, Gordon Gamble and Nathan Kay.

Thanks! We asked Barry Burgason, chair of MFPC’s Wildlife Committee, if he wanted to write anything about his upcoming retirement, but he declined, saying, “I don’t think I am anyone special, so we can just let the word seep out.” For the record, though, Barry’s dedication to wildlife is special, as he’s proven  in 22 years as wildlife biologist for Huber Resources and 17 more for the Inland Fisheries and Wildlife Department. The Council appreciates his leadership on issues ranging from lynx to budworm, and is pleased that he plans stay on the Wildlife Committee.

Action Requested by Forest Resources Association (FRA)

Contact your Congressman and Senator and urge them to support the Future Logging Careers Act sponsored in the House by Rep. Bruce Poliquin (R-ME) and Rep. Raul Labrador (R-ID) as well as it’s Senate companion bill with sponsors Sen. Angus King I-(ME) and Sen. Risch(R-ID). The Future Logging Careers Act would allow young men and women to learn how to run the business, including equipment operation and maintenance, prior to the age of eighteen under the under the close supervision of their parents. TAKE ACTION HERE! More information.

UMaine-led research team predicts increasing decline of hemlock

Hemlock woolly adelgid

Land managers in New England and eastern New York state have a new tool to help identify eastern hemlock stands at greatest risk for rapid growth decline by evaluating stresses on the trees, including response to the hemlock woolly adelgid and changes resulting from a warming climate. Today, an estimated 26 percent of the region’s hemlock stands are at high risk. As winters get warmer, the decline will increase, with 43 percent of stands expected to be at high risk, according to a research team led by William Livingston, associate professor of forest resources, University of Maine.  The results of the study, which involved researchers from UMaine, the University of Vermont and LandVest Inc., were published in the journal Biological Invasions. Read more.

The Nature Conservancy is looking for a Forest Program Director to be the strategic leader for all forest conservation initiatives in Maine, including strategy development, land protection, stakeholder outreach and community relations, and leading TNC’s work to engage partners in developing new approaches to integrating a sustainable forest economy, forest-based climate change solutions and biodiversity conservation. TNC Maine-Forest Program Director Profile. External applicants MUST apply via by referencing job #45306. All applications are due by April 26.

Do you know of a really BIG TREE?

An announcement just arrived about Franklin County’s Big Tree Contest from May 1 through October 15, but native trees also can be nominated statewide. The Maine Forest Service has information online for children and adults about how to nominate big trees. The national and state registries help recognize the importance of trees to our environment and quality of life. Big trees provide cool shade and shelter for wildlife, as well as contributing to clean air and water.   For more information please contact MFS District Forester Patty Cormier, 592-2238.

Condolences to the family of our Calvin Thompson, 85, who died March 28 in Lincoln. He started logging in 1968 and by the 1970s had built his logging and trucking business, Thompson Forest and Trucking, Inc., to 110 employees. In 1992, he was named MFPC’s Outstanding Logger and Northeast Division Outstanding Logger Award from the American Pulpwood Association. He served in the Maine Legislature in 1992-1994. Read BDN obituary.


About MFPC

Since 1961, the Maine Forest Products Council has represented our state’s diverse forest products community, including logging contractors, sawmills, paper mills, biomass energy, facilities, pellet manufacturers, furniture manufacturers, and the owners of more than nine million acres of commercial forestland in Maine.

Patrick Strauch, Executive Director
Pat Sirois, SFI Coordinator
Roberta Scruggs, Communications Director
Sue McCarthy, Office Manager