Joined by members of the New Hampshire conservation and forestry community, Senator Jeanne Shaheen recently led a roundtable conversation on the pending reauthorization of the federal Farm Bill. The Farm Bill is one of the most consequential pieces of legislation that Congress must act on. Reauthorized every five years, the legislation funds nutrition and food programs, agriculture supports and key conservation programs.
Those conservation programs play a significant part in the conservation work here in New Hampshire. The Forest Society has used this assistance, such as the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP), on several of our conservation projects.
One of the points of discussion was the conservation community’s interest in the creation of a new program within the Farm Bill- the Forest Conservation Easement Program. Modeled after ACEP, the Forest Conservation Easement Program would become another option available to land trusts help them conservation easements on forestlands.
Joining Senator Shaheen at the meeting were:
- Anne Truslow, Vice President for Development, Forest Society
- Brian Hotz, Vice President for Land Conservation, Forest Society
- Meredith Hatfield, Associate Director for Policy and Government Relations for the Nature Conservancy-NH
- Donna Hepp, State Conservation Committee, Chair & President of NH Association of Conservation Districts
- Jasen Stock, Executive Director of NH Timberland Owners
- Jen Pribble, Executive Director of Upper Saco Valley Land Trust
- Ryan Owens, Executive Director, Monadnock Conservancy
- Jeanie McIntyre, President, Upper Valley Land Trust
- Barbara Richter, Executive Director, NH Association of Conservation Commissions
- Matt Leahy, Public Policy Director, Forest Society