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YCQM - Paul Costello - Jan. 22, 2012 - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

YCQM - Paul Costello - Jan. 22, 2012

January 22, 2012 -- Paul Costello of the Vt. Council on Rural Development and Rep. Will Stevens, I-Shoreham, join Darren Perron and Keith McGilvery to discuss Vermont's working landscape.

 

              >> GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE.

 

              I'M DARREN PERRON.

 

              >> AND I'M KEITH McGILVERY.

 

              OUR FOCUS IS ON VERMONT'S

 

              WORKING LANDSCAPE AND THE NEW

 

              PUSH TO MAKE IT EASIER FOR

 

              PEOPLE TO START FARMING AND

 

              LOGGING.

 

              >> OUR GUESTS ARE PAUL COSTELLO

 

              AND REPRESENTATIVE WILL STEVENS,

 

              AN INDEPENDENT FROM SHOREHAM.

 

              THANK YOU BOTH FOR JOINING US

 

              THIS MORNING.

 

              LET'S START RIGHT OFF WITH THIS

 

              LEGISLATION UNDER CONSIDERATION

 

              IN MONT BELL -- MONTPELIER.

 

              REALLY IT'S A PUSH TO PRESERVE

 

              AND FURTHER VERMONT'S WORKING

 

              LANDSCAPE.

 

              THIS IS NOT A NEW PROBLEM.

 

              WE'VE SEEN A THIRD OF VERMONT'S

 

              FARMS GO UNDER IN THE PAST

 

              DECADE.

 

              WHY THIS MOVE NOW?

 

              PAUL?

 

              >> THE COUNCIL ON RURAL

 

 

 

 

              DEVELOPMENT HAS BEEN CONCERNED

 

              ABOUT WORKING LANDSCAPE FOR OVER

 

              TEN YEARS, WE'VE SEEN THE STEADY

 

              LOSS OF DAIRY FARMS.

 

              THE UNSEEN CHALLENGE TO THE

 

              FOREST PRODUCTS INDUSTRY.

 

              MOST VERMONTERS DON'T KNOW THERE

 

              IS A PARALLEL TREND LINE BETWEEN

 

              DAIRY AND THE FOREST PRODUCT

 

              LINE.

 

              VERMONT HAS TO COMPETE ON A

 

              COMMODITY ECONOMY INSTEAD OF

 

              ADDING VALUE TO PRODUCTS WHEN WE

 

              LOSE MILLS, WHEN WE LOSE DAIRY.

 

              WE HAVE A TREMENDOUS OPPORTUNITY

 

              AROUND THE LANDSCAPE THAT

 

              DEFINES VERMONT, AND FOR JOB

 

              CREATION, FOR ATTRACTING

 

              ENTREPRENEURS, FOR ADDING VALUE

 

              THAT EXPANDS THE ECONOMY IN THE

 

              MOST RURAL PARTS OF THE STATE,

 

              AND WE'VE BEEN DEDICATED TO

 

              ADVANCING THE RURAL LANDSCAPE

 

              FOR YEARS NOW, AND THE BILL KIND

 

              OF BRINGS IT ALL TO A POINT.

 

              >> I COULD TALK A LOT MORE ABOUT

 

 

 

 

              WHY WE'RE AT A TIPPING POINT,

 

              BUT MAYBE YOU WOULD LIKE TO

 

              SHARE.

 

              >> SURE.

 

              FOR ME, IT CREATES A FRAME FOR

 

              ALL THE WORK THAT'S BEEN DONE

 

              OVER THE LAST 40+ YEARS IN THE

 

              STATE SUPPORTING AGRICULTURE

 

              AND, TO SOME EXTENT, FOREST

 

              PRODUCTS, CERTAINLY IN THE LAND

 

              USE ARENA.

 

              BACK TO FARM TO PLAY.

 

              THESE ARE ALL THINGS THAT HAVE

 

              TAKEN PLACE IN SUPPORT OF OUR

 

              AGRICULTURAL SECTOR, AND -- BUT

 

              IT'S ALL BEEN DISCRETE.

 

              WE HAVE A NEW FRAME TO BUNCH

 

              THEM ALL IN AND SAY {OOPS} THIS

 

              IS IMPORTANT GOING FORWARD, AS A

 

              GOAL WE ARE UNITED TO SAY THAT

 

              OUR AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY

 

              PRODUCTS SECTORS ARE SOMETHING

 

              WORTH HAVING IN THE FUTURE,

 

              LET'S GO.

 

              >> WILL, YOU'RE REALLY ON THE

 

              FRONT LINES OF THIS HERE IN

 

 

 

 

              VERMONT.

 

              WHAT ARE YOUR BIGGEST NEEDS, DO

 

              YOU THINK, AND HOW DOES THIS

 

              LEGISLATION TACKLE THAT?

 

              >> WELL, I THINK, IN A NUTSHELL,

 

              I WANT TO HAVE SOMETHING WORTH

 

              PASSING ON TO THE NEXT

 

              GENERATION.

 

              I'M A FIRST-GENERATION GROWER

 

              MYSELF, WE RAISE VEGETABLES DOWN

 

              IN SHOREHAM, AND I WANT TO MAKE

 

              SURE THAT SOMEBODY ELSE HAS THE

 

              OPPORTUNITY IN THE NEXT

 

              GENERATION, ONCE I'M DONE.

 

              AND, FRANKLY, I KEEP THINKING

 

              ABOUT THE JONI MITCHELL SONG,

 

              "YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'VE GOT

 

              'TIL IT'S GONE."

 

              IF WE DON'T FOCUS ON THAT GOAL

 

              OF SUCCESSION AND TRANSFERRING

 

              SOMETHING VIABLE IN TERMS OF OUR

 

              BASE, ONE DAY WE'RE GOING TO

 

              WAKE UP AND SAY, "WHAT

 

              HAPPENED?"

 

              >> SUPPORTERS OF THIS

 

              LEGISLATION SAY THIS COULD MAKE

 

 

 

 

              VERMONT A FOOD SYSTEMS LEADER,

 

              BUT FOR FOLKS AT HOME, WHAT DOES

 

              THAT MEAN FOR YOU GUYS AND FOR

 

              OUR STATE, "FOOD SYSTEMS

 

              LEADER"?

 

              >> IN MY OVERSIMPLIFIED

 

              ANALYSIS, WE HAVE THE COMMODITY

 

              FORM, WHICH IS BASICALLY DAIRY,

 

              APPLES TO SOME EXTENT, MAPLE,

 

              AND THEN RELATIONSHIP-BASED

 

              AGRICULTURE.

 

              THERE HAS BEEN A LOT OF

 

              EXCITEMENT IN THE LAST TEN YEARS

 

              OR SO AROUND THE

 

              RELATIONSHIP-BASED PIECE, WHICH

 

              IS ONE OF THE SIGNATURES OF THAT

 

              IS THE FACT THAT THE END USER

 

              AND THE PRODUCER HAVE A VERY

 

              SHORT LINK.

 

              THE CONSUMER BUYS DIRECTLY FROM

 

              THE FARMER, TYPICALLY.

 

              THE PRODUCER IS ALSO A

 

              PRICE-SETTER.

 

              IN THE COMMODITY WORLD, THERE IS

 

              A VERY LONG LINK BETWEEN THE END

 

              USER AND THE PRODUCER, AND THE

 

 

 

 

              PRICETAKERS, MOST OFTEN.

 

              SO FOR ME, VERMONT'S FOOD SYSTEM

 

              HAS THE OPPORTUNITY TO TRADE ON

 

              OUR RELATIONSHIP-BASED

 

              EXCITEMENT, WITH FARMERS MARKETS

 

              AND THE FOOD HUBS, AND ALSO OUR

 

              BRAND AND IMAGE, WHICH AS THE

 

              GOVERNOR HAS SAID OFTEN, PUTS US

 

              WITHIN 200 MILES OR SEVERAL

 

              HOURS' DRIVE OF 80 MILLION

 

              PEOPLE.

 

              >> THE OTHER SIDE IS WE LEAD THE

 

              STATISTICALLY IN A NUMBER OF

 

              YEARS.

 

              VERMONT IS NO. 1 PER CAPITA IN

 

              THE FARMERS MARKETS, DIRECT

 

              SALES OF AGRICULTURE PRODUCTS,

 

              AND CSA DEVELOPMENT -- COMMUNITY

 

              SUPPORTED AGRICULTURAL

 

              PROCESSES.

 

              WAY AHEAD OF OTHER STATES.

 

              STATES ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY

 

              ARE REALLY EXCITED ABOUT THE

 

              IDEA OF THE FOODS MOVEMENT, AND

 

              VERMONT IS STATISTICALLY WAY

 

              AHEAD.

 

 

 

 

              IN WYOMING THEY HAVE ONLY ONE

 

              CSA.

 

              THAT SO, FIVE YEARS AGO IN

 

              HARDWICK, A GROUP OF

 

              ENTREPRENEURS CAME TOGETHER AS

 

              INCENTIVE, AND SAID WE'RE THE

 

              CENTER OF VERMONT'S AGRICULTURAL

 

              RENAISSANCE.

 

              THEY DIDN'T ASK PERMISSION.

 

              BUT WE ALL LOOK FOR LEADERSHIP,

 

              AND YOUNG PEOPLE HAVE MOVED TO

 

              HARDWICK.

 

              A LOT OF ADDITIONAL

 

              ENTREPRENEURS HAVE DEVELOPED NEW

 

              BUSINESSES.

 

              THERE ARE 20 NEW DOWNTOWN

 

              BUSINESSES IN HARDWICK IN THE

 

              PAST YEAR.

 

              THESE ARE NOT ALL

 

              AGRICULTURALISTS, BUT HARDWICK

 

              IS COOL, IT'S THE CENTER OF

 

              INNOVATION, PEOPLE ARE WORKING

 

              TOGETHER, AND THERE IS A

 

              TREMENDOUS SENSE OF OPTIMISM.

 

              AS A COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT

 

              SPECIALIST AND SOMEONE WHO CARES

 

 

 

 

              ABOUT RURAL COMMUNITIES, THEY'VE

 

              TAKEN IT INTO THEIR POWER TO

 

              TAKE LEADERSHIP, PULL TOGETHER,

 

              AND STAND FOR SOMETHING.

 

              WE BELIEVE VERMONTERS ARE READY

 

              TO DO A SIMILAR THING, IN THAT

 

              VERMONT HAS THE OPPORTUNITY TO

 

              MAKE A DECLARATION LIKE THAT.

 

              AND YOU THINK ABOUT MIDWEST

 

              WHERE AGRICULTURE DOESN'T NEED

 

              THE SAME NUMBER OF PEOPLE THAT

 

              IT USED TO, WHERE DOWNTOWNS ARE

 

              EMPTYING OUT AND YOUNG PEOPLE

 

              ARE NO LONGER CHOOSING TO LIVE.

 

              YOU THINK ABOUT VERMONT'S

 

              CHALLENGE WITH DEMOGRAPHICS.

 

              TODAY RURAL VERMONT IS STILL

 

              COOL, STILL VITAL, STILL MAKING

 

              PROGRESS.

 

              BUT WE COULD END UP LIKE MANY

 

              PLACES IN THE MIDWEST AND FAR

 

              WEST WHERE TOWNS HAVE EMPTIED

 

              OUT AND HAVE EMPTY GLASS

 

              STOREFRONTS.

 

              PEOPLE ARE MOVING FROM THOSE

 

              PLACES, LOOKING FOR A POINT OF

 

 

 

 

              LEADERSHIP.

 

              VERMONT COULD RAISE THE FLAG AND

 

              SAY "WE'RE GOING TO BE THE

 

              CENTER FOR ENTREPRENEURISM.

 

              WE WELCOME A NEW GENERATION OF

 

              PEOPLE TO THE LAND.

 

              THIS IS WHERE IT'S HAPPENING,

 

              COME TO VERMONT, AND WE'RE GOING

 

              TO HELP YOU SUCCEED."

 

              >> A FEW YEARS AGO THERE WAS A

 

              COMMISSION STUDY THAT SHOWED

 

              THAT THE AVERAGE VERMONT DAIRY

 

              FARMER WAS ABOUT 60 YEARS OLD.

 

              >> RIGHT.

 

              >> HOW DO WE STEM THAT TIDE?

 

              HOW DO WE TURN THAT AROUND?

 

              WHAT DO WE DO TO KEEP YOUNG

 

              PEOPLE HERE, TO ATTRACT YOUNG

 

              PEOPLE?

 

              WHAT DOES THIS NEW LEGISLATION

 

              DO?

 

              >> WELL, TO ANSWER YOUR FIRST

 

              QUESTION, I THINK PRODUCERS ARE

 

              VERY CLEVER.

 

              THEY'RE ENTREPRENEURIAL BY

 

              NATURE, AND THEY'RE

 

 

 

 

              OPPORTUNISTIC.

 

              I THINK IF MARKETS EXIST,

 

              THEY'LL FIND WAYS TO FILL THE

 

              MARKETS.

 

              SO THE SHORT ANSWER TO "WHAT DO

 

              WE DO ABOUT FOLKS INTERESTED IN

 

              MAKING A LIVING IN AGRICULTURE"

 

              IS "MAKE IT POSSIBLE FOR THEM TO

 

              MAKE A LIVING" OR FOR

 

              AGRICULTURE TO BE PROFITABLE FOR

 

              THEM.

 

              SO ONE OF THE THINGS -- THIS IS

 

              ESSENTIALLY AN ECONOMIC

 

              DEVELOPMENT BILL.

 

              IT PROVIDES AN OPPORTUNITY FOR

 

              AGRICULTURAL -- AND I HAVE TO

 

              REMEMBER TO SAY FOREST PRODUCTS,

 

              BECAUSE THAT'S THE OTHER

 

              IMPORTANT PIECE OF THIS BILL --

 

              AG AND FOREST-PRODUCTS FOLKS TO

 

              HAVE ACCESS TO VARIETY OF

 

              FINANCIAL RESOURCES, REGULATORY

 

              ADVICE, AND THE WRAPAROUND

 

              SERVICE FOR WHEN IT COMES TO

 

              DEVELOPING YOUR BUSINESS AND,

 

              YOU KNOW, MOVING YOUR BUSINESS

 

 

 

 

              FORWARD.

 

              THERE ARE A LOT OF QUESTIONS

 

              THAT COME UP:  WHAT SHOULD I DO?

 

              WHO DO I CALL?

 

              WHERE DO I GO?

 

              THERE SEAMS TO BE A DEARTH IN

 

              THAT.

 

              THIS BILL WILL HELP AADDRESS

 

              THAT TO SOME EXTENT AS WELL.

 

              >> LET ME GIVE YOU IN A NUTSHELL

 

              WHAT THE BILL PROPOSES:  IT

 

              BUILDS A MARKETING CAMPAIGN FOR

 

              VERMONT THAT MAKES THAT

 

              LEADERSHIP DECLARATION AND LOOKS

 

              TO ATTRACT A GENERATION OF

 

              ENTREPRENEURS TO THE LAND, FARM

 

              AND FOREST, AND ALSO BOOSTS

 

              VERMONT'S BRAND AND MARKET FOR

 

              VERMONT PRODUCTS.

 

              IT ESTABLISHES A FUND THAT WOULD

 

              SUPPORT ENTREPRENEURIAL

 

              SERVICES, IN WRAPAROUND SERVICES

 

              TO SUPPORT POTENTIAL HIGH-GROWTH

 

              ENTERPRISES.

 

              >> $3 MILLION?

 

              >> IT'S ALL PART OF IT.

 

 

 

 

              WE'RE NOT JUST TALKING ABOUT THE

 

              LOCAL-FOODS MOVEMENT; WE'RE

 

              TALKING ABOUT THE WHOLE RANGE OF

 

              AGRICULTURE, FROM VALUE-ADDED

 

              ICE CREAM MANUFACTURERS, AND WE

 

              WANT TO FIND AND SUPPORT THE

 

              NEXT BEN & JERRY'S AND LET THEM

 

              GO TO SCALE IN VERMONT.

 

              NOW THE CHEESE CAVES UP IN

 

              JASPER HILL IN GREENSBORO --

 

              WHAT'S SO COOL IS THE YOUNG

 

              FARMERS HAD A HUNDRED-COW DAIRY

 

              FARM, AND THEY SAID WE WANT TO

 

              MAKE AND STORE LOCAL CHEESE, BUT

 

              LET'S THINK BIGGER, LET'S BUILD

 

              AN ECONOMIC CLUSTER, LET'S BUILD

 

              THESE CAVES AT SCALE AND TEACH

 

              OUR NEIGHBORS HOW TO MAKE

 

              CHEESE, SO THEY'RE GOING FROM

 

              PARTICIPATING IN THE COMMODITY

 

              ECONOMY TO CAPTURING HIGH-END

 

              DOLLARS, BUILDING JOBS IF THAT

 

              RANGE, SO REALLY LEVERAGE THE

 

              ECONOMIC PROGRESS OF THEIR

 

              COMMUNITY, AND MEANWHILE THEY'RE

 

              BUILDING, THEY'RE DISTRIBUTING

 

 

 

 

              TOGETHER, MARKETING TOGETHER,

 

              BRANDING TOGETHER, AND

 

              ULTIMATELY, WE WOULD LOVE TO

 

              SELL CHEESE TO THE FRENCH WITH A

 

              SPECIALTY LIKE CAMEMBERT.

 

              WHY NOT?

 

              WE BELIEVE WE SHOULD INVEST IN

 

              PRIVATE-SECTOR LEADERSHIP, IN

 

              SLAUGHTERHOUSES, MILK BOTTLING.

 

              LET'S ENCOURAGE LEADERSHIP TO

 

              TAKE THE NEXT STEP, AND ANCHOR

 

              BUSINESSES THAT CAN SUPPORT

 

              THEIR NEIGHBORS AND HELP OTHER

 

              PEOPLE SUCCEED.

 

              >> WE NEED A NEW DESIGNATION, A

 

              WORKING-LANDS DESIGNATION, THAT

 

              LOOKS AT PARTICULARLY VALUABLE

 

              ENTERPRISE LANDS, LANDS WITH

 

              FOUNDATIONS FOR BUSINESSES AND

 

              JOB CREATION IN RURAL VERMONT

 

              THAT CONTRIBUTE TO THE LOCAL

 

              ECONOMY.

 

              I MEAN, WE BELIEVE THAT THE

 

              WORKING LANDSCAPE IS SORT OF OUR

 

              FOUNDATION FOR OUR CHARACTER AND

 

              OUR CULTURE, AND THAT THESE

 

 

 

 

              PARTICULAR LANDS ARE INCREDIBLY

 

              VALUABLE FOR EVERYTHING FROM

 

              SCENIC TO ECOLOGICAL SERVICES,

 

              CLEAN AIR AND WATER, TO

 

              RECREATION.

 

              AND THAT WE SHOULD HAVE SOME

 

              INCENTIVES THERE SO THAT THESE

 

              PARTICULAR LANDS WOULD HAVE

 

              EASIER ACCESS TO FUNDING FOR

 

              PROJECT DEVELOPMENT.

 

              THEY MIGHT GET CAPITAL GAINS TAX

 

              BREAKS FOR LONG-TERM SUSTAINABLE

 

              FOREST HARVESTING, OR THE SALE

 

              OF COWS, OR THE TRANSFER OF

 

              SKITTERS AND TRACTORS {OOPS} SO

 

              THOSE CAN BE SOLD MORE CHEAPLY

 

              FOR THE NEXT GENERATION COMING

 

              IN.

 

              AND FINALLY, WE THINK THE STATE

 

              HAS TO HAVE A MORE SYSTEMATIC

 

              PLANNING CONVERSATION, THAT

 

              RIGHT NOW WE HAVE A PLANNING LAW

 

              BASED ON ACT 200 THAT DESIGNS A

 

              T, AND THE T IS LOCAL AND

 

              REGIONAL PLANNING THAT SHOULD BE

 

              COMMUNICATING WITH THE STATE,

 

 

 

 

              AND THEN AGENCY PLANS.

 

              WHEN IT WAS DESIGNED AS A

 

              PLANNING COORDINATION

 

              CENTERPOINT.

 

              TO DAY WE HAVE THAT STRUCTURE

 

              WITHOUT A CROSSING POINT, AND WE

 

              HAVE THE IDEA OF A DEVELOPMENT

 

              CABINET THAT LOOKS TO THE

 

              FUTURE.

 

              WHAT'S VERMONT'S GREEN ECONOMY

 

              GOING TO LOOK LIKE?

 

              HOW DO WE PLAN FOR THE FUTURE OF

 

              AGRICULTURE AND FOREST PRODUCTS?

 

              WE BELIEVE THAT CABINET IS VERY

 

              IMPORTANT TO VERMONT'S FUTURE,

 

              THAT WE NEED A MORE SYSTEMATIC

 

              PLANNING PROCESS, NOT TOP DOWN

 

              BUT TO BUILD COMMUNICATIONS AND

 

              HELP PEOPLE WORK IN A COMMON

 

              SENSE OF DIRECTION.

 

              THAT'S WHAT DEMOCRACY IS ALL

 

              ABOUT.

 

              SO WE NEED THAT.

 

              AND IT SHOULD BE STAFFED.

 

              SO WE THINK THAT THIS

 

              COORDINATED OFFICE FOR PLANNING

 

 

 

 

              CAN UNIFY STATE AGENCY PLANNING,

 

              CAN CONNECT TOWNS AND REGIONS TO

 

              THAT PLANNING SO THERE IS

 

              COMMUNICATION, NOT TOP DOWN BUT

 

              A LINE OF COMMUNICATION THAT

 

              EMPOWERS THE SYSTEM THAT MAKES

 

              IT MORE MEANINGFUL FOR EVERYONE,

 

              IN LINE WITH VERMONT'S LONG-TERM

 

              LAND-USE GOALS.

 

              >> AND POSSIBLY, THE ONE YOU

 

              WERE JUST TALKING ABOUT, YOU TWO

 

              SHARE A TREMENDOUS SENSE OF

 

              OPTIMISM ABOUT WHAT'S COMING OUT

 

              OF MONTPELIER, BUT HOW DO YOU

 

              MAKE SURE THAT ORDINARY FOLKS

 

              ARE PART OF THIS CONVERSATION

 

              AND CAN BUY INTO WHAT YOU'RE

 

              TRYING TO DO?

 

              >> HMM.

 

              WELL, I THINK THERE'S ALREADY A

 

              BASE WE CAN BUILD ON RIGHT NOW.

 

              AGAIN, THROUGH ORGANIZATIONS

 

              LIKE -- EFFORTS LIKE THE UNIBELL

 

              FOUNDATION AND RAFFIN AND

 

              ROLLIN, CERTAINLY THE FARM TO

 

              PLATE REPORT THAT THE

 

 

 

 

              SUSTAINABLE JOBS REPORT PUT OUT

 

              SHOWED TREMENDOUS OPTIMISM, AND

 

              IN SOME WAYS, {OOPS} MAYBE

 

              CHURNED THE WATERS A LITTLE BIT,

 

              OF INTEREST.

 

              THEY INTERVIEWED THOUSANDS AND

 

              THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE IN THE

 

              LEADUP TO THE REPORT.

 

              I THINK PEOPLE ARE READY, AND

 

              OUTREACH WOULD BE ONE OF THE

 

              THINGS, THAT WOULD BE ONE OF MY

 

              JOBS, TO JUST HELP GET THE WORD

 

              OUT.

 

              FACT IS, I THINK UNDER THE

 

              GOLDEN DOME IN THE STATEHOUSE, I

 

              THINK THERE IS A LOT OF INTEREST

 

              IN THIS.

 

              {OOPS} EVERYBODY HAS TO EAT,

 

              EVERYBODY HAS TO LIVE UNDER SOME

 

              SORT OF SHELTER, AND BOTH AG AND

 

              FOREST PRODUCTS CAN PLAY A ROLE

 

              IN THIS.

 

              IT'S AS MUCH OUR JOB TO GET THE

 

              WORD OUT AS ANYBODY ELSE.

 

              >> REPRESENTATIVE STEVENS, UNDER

 

              THE GOLDEN DOME, $3 MILLION IS

 

 

 

 

              SET ASIDE FOR GRANTS OR LOANS,

 

              POTENTIALLY UP TO 15 MILLION.

 

              HOW DO WE PAY FOR IT?

 

              >> THAT IS THE QUESTION, AND THE

 

              HOUSE AG COMMITTEE IS WORKING ON

 

              THAT.

 

              THIS WILL BE -- I HAVE NO FIRM

 

              PROPOSAL RIGHT NOW.

 

              OF COURSE, IN OUR HEART OF

 

              HEARTS, WE'RE HOPING TO HEAR

 

              MENTION OF IT IN THE BUDGET FROM

 

              THE GOVERNOR.

 

              WE DIDN'T HEAR IT.

 

              THAT'S OKAY.

 

              THAT MEANS OUR WORK IS CUT OUT

 

              FOR US.

 

              IT WOULD BE PREMATURE FOR ME TO

 

              SAY ANYTHING SPECIFIC BECAUSE WE

 

              DON'T HAVE ANY SPECIFIC IDEAS

 

              YET.

 

              I THINK WHERE WE'RE AT RIGHT NOW

 

              IN COMMITTEE IS IN THE PROCESS

 

              OF KIND OF REVIEWING THE BILL,

 

              IN A SENSE DECONSTRUCTING THE

 

              BILL TO FIGURE OUT WHAT'S

 

              PRACTICAL, WHAT CAN WORK.

 

 

 

 

              IT'S A HIGHLY ASPIRATIONAL BILL.

 

              PART OF COMMUNITY PROCESS IS TO

 

              CHUNK THAT DOWN INTO WHAT'S

 

              DOABLE.

 

              LET'S NOT SELL A FALSE SENSE OF

 

              HOPE.

 

              AND SO -- SO WE'RE GOING THROUGH

 

              THAT PROCESS RIGHT NOW.

 

              YET AS WE DO THAT, WE OBVIOUSLY

 

              HAVE TO KEEP AN EYE ON HOW WE'RE

 

              GOING TO PAY FOR THAT.

 

              THAT'S PART OF THE NEGOTIATION.

 

              >> THE GOVERNOR HAS SAID NO

 

              BROAD-BASED TAXES.

 

              DO YOU ANTICIPATE ANY KIND OF

 

              FEE, ANY KIND OF TAX TO PAY FOR

 

              THIS?

 

              >> WE ARE A POLICY COMMITTEE,

 

              THE HOUSE AG COMMITTEE.

 

              CERTAINLY WE'RE TALKING ABOUT --

 

          ,     CAROLYN BRANIGAN IS ON THE WAYS

 

              AND MEANS, AND WE'LL BE {OOPS}

 

              WORKING WITH WAYS AND MEANS AND

 

              APPROPRIATIONS TO SEE WHAT WE

 

              CAN WORK OUT.

 

              >> WE HAVE TO TAKE A QUICK BREAK

 

 

 

 

              TO PAY OUR BILLS HERE, AND WE'LL

 

              BE RIGHT BACK IN JUST A MOMENT.

 

              BRANNING AAN BRANAGAN

 

              AGRICULTURE {OOPS} CAROLYN

 

              BRANIGAN CAROLYN BRANAGAN.

 

              >> WELCOME BACK.

 

              WE'RE TALKING ABOUT VERMONT'S

 

              WORKING LANDSCAPE WITH PAUL

 

              COSTELLO AND REPRESENTATIVE WILL

 

              STEVENS.

 

              REPRESENTATIVE STEVENS, LET'S

 

              TALK ABOUT THE SUPPORT IN THE

 

              STATEHOUSE.

 

              IT APPEARS THAT THIS MEASURE IS

 

              GETTING BIPARTISAN SUPPORT.

 

              >> YES, ABSOLUTELY.

 

              AND WE'VE HAD -- WE HAVE -- I'LL

 

              CALL IT THE DRIP TEAM, DEMOCRAT,

 

              REPUBLICAN, INDEPENDENT, AND

 

              PROGRESSIVE, FOUR LEAD SPONSORS.

 

              WE MADE A POINT OF KEEPING IT

 

              THAT WAY TO SHOW MULTILATERAL

 

              SUPPORT FOR IT, EVEN IN OUR

 

              COMMITTEE THE CONVERSATION HAS

 

              MOVED KIND OF BEYOND THE

 

              TRADITIONAL "HOW ARE WE GOING TO

 

 

 

 

              PAY FOR IT" TO "IF WE CAN'T GET

 

              THE FULL THREE MILLION, IT'S A

 

              CONVERSATION WORTH HAVING,"

 

              WHICH HAS BEEN VERY INTERESTING.

 

              >> DO YOU ANTICIPATE ANY

 

              CONTROVERSY?

 

              BECAUSE LOGGING IS PART OF THIS.

 

              IN YEARS PAST, WE HAVE SEEN SOME

 

              ENVIRONMENTALISTS COME OUT

 

              AGAINST THAT IDEA.

 

              ARE YOU ANTICIPATING ANY

 

              OPPOSITION?

 

              >> WELL, WE'RE GETTING SOME

 

              PUSHBACK FROM FOLKS WHO DON'T

 

              SEE A ROLE FOR GOVERNMENT IN THE

 

              PRIVATE SECTOR.

 

              WE'RE SEEING THAT.

 

              I SUPPOSE THERE'S SOME OTHER

 

              PREDICTABLE THINGS, BUT PEOPLE

 

              ARE INTERESTED, IF ONLY BECAUSE

 

              THEY'RE CURIOUS, BUT, NO, I

 

              THINK IN GENERAL, PEOPLE REALIZE

 

              THIS IS -- THIS IS A BIG DEAL.

 

              THIS IS POTENTIALLY

 

              TRANSFORMATIONAL, AND I THINK

 

              THEY WANT TO BE ON BOARD.

 

 

 

 

              AGAIN, WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE IT

 

              WORKS.

 

              BUT, YOU KNOW, AGAIN, NONE OF US

 

              WANT TO HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO

 

              LOOK BACK 20 YEARS AND WISH THEY

 

              COULD HAVE DONE MORE.

 

              >> LET ME FOLLOW UP ON SOMETHING

 

              ABOUT LOGGING.

 

              I GREW UP IN NORTHEAST KINGDOM,

 

              I KNOW THERE ARE SAWMILLS THAT

 

              HAVE GONE UNDER AS A RESULT OF

 

              BASICALLY OUR NEIGHBORS TO THE

 

              NORTH, CANADIAN SAWMILLS

 

              SUBSIDIZED IN SOME FASHION.

 

              HOW DO WE COMPETE WITH CANADA,

 

              IN VERMONT?

 

              >> GREAT QUESTION.

 

              MAYBE PAUL'S GOT SOME INSIGHTS.

 

              >> YOU CAN'T COMPETE IN THE

 

              GLOBAL ECONOMY FOR THE BOTTOM OF

 

              A COMMODITY MARKET.

 

              AN INCREASING NUMBER OF VERMONT

 

              LOGS ARE CUT AND SHIPPED FOR

 

              PROCESSING OVER THE BORDER.

 

              YOU THINK IN A HARD-MAPLE TRUNK

 

              OF WOOD, THE GREATEST VALUE IS

 

 

 

 

              YOU GO FROM THE STUMPAGE TO THE

 

              MILLING TO THE MAKING OF A

 

              HIGH-END BOWL AND FURNITURE AND

 

              SO FORTH -- THE VALUE CHAIN IS

 

              REALLY ON THE HIGHER END.

 

              WE DON'T WANT TO SELL OUR LOGS

 

              FOR PROCESSING IN CHINA AND

 

              PURCHASE THEM BACK AT LOWE'S.

 

              WE WANT TO KEEP THEM CLOSE, AND

 

              CAPTURE AS MANY DOLLARS AS COME

 

              BACK TO RURAL COMMUNITIES.

 

              IT'S ABOUT JOBS AND RURAL

 

              PROSPERITY IN VERMONT.

 

              THE INTERESTING THING IS THE

 

              ENVIRONMENTAL COMMUNITY, THE

 

              DNRC IS A PARTNER OF OURS IN

 

              PROMOTING THIS, OTHER

 

              ENVIRONMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS ARE

 

              VERY IN FAVOR OF IT.

 

              I THINK THE ENVIRONMENTAL

 

              MOVEMENT IN VERMONT IS AT A

 

              POINT WHERE IT'S SAYING, YOU

 

              KNOW, DO WE WANT TO STOP

 

              LOGGING?

 

              OF COURSE NOT.

 

              WHAT IS IT WE STAND FOR?

 

 

 

 

              AND THEY HAVE TO {SFOOND} A

 

              GREEN ECONOMIC BASE FOR THE

 

              FUTURE.

 

              SO A LOT OF THEIR WORK, LIKE THE

 

              WORK AT THE LAND TRUST, IS NOT

 

              JUST PRESERVING AND PROTECTING

 

              AND CONSERVING POCKETS OF

 

              VERMONT FOR LONG TERM.

 

              THEY'RE TRYING TO SAY, HOW DO WE

 

              BUILD THE ECONOMY THAT'S GOING

 

              TO HAVE THE GREEN RESULTS THAT

 

              WE NEED FOR LONG-TERM

 

              SUSTAINABILITY?

 

              AND THAT CONVERSATION CONNECTS

 

              DIRECTLY TO THE

 

              ECONOMIC-DEVELOPMENT

 

              CONVERSATION IN VERMONT.

 

              SO WE HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY FOR

 

              NEW ALLIANCES THAT FIT WITH A

 

              REALLY DEEP TRADITION OF HOW WE

 

              ARE AS A STATE.

 

              SO IT'S EXCITING.

 

              >> I DON'T THINK PEOPLE ARE

 

              GOING TO CONTEST THE IDEA OF

 

              KEEPING JOBS HERE IN VERMONT,

 

              BUT HOW DO WE DO IT?

 

 

 

 

              ARE THEY ALLIANCES OR CAN

 

              MONTPELIER HELP?

 

              >> I THINK THAT WHERE DOES THE

 

              LEADERSHIP COME FROM?

 

              THE LEADERSHIP COMES FROM THE

 

              ENTREPRENEURS, THE BUSINESS

 

              PEOPLE, REPUBLICANS AND

 

              DEMOCRATS, WE ALL HAVE TO SEE --

 

              WILL'S FARM DOESN'T RUN BY

 

              ITSELF.

 

              >> [ LAUGHTER ]

 

              >> YOU HAVE TO PUT YOUR BACK TO

 

              THE PLOW, AND YOU HAVE TO

 

              ENCOURAGE RISK-TAKING AND

 

              INNOVATION AND CREATIVITY.

 

              SO WHEN WE'RE TALKING ABOUT

 

              INVESTING STATE RESOURCES, WE'RE

 

              NOT TALKING ABOUT INVESTING IN

 

              COMMODITY PRODUCTION, WE'RE

 

              TALKING ABOUT INVESTING IN

 

              BUSINESS GROWTH, WE'RE TALKING

 

              ABOUT CREATIVE STRATEGIC

 

              INVESTMENTS THAT HELP LEVER

 

              IN{STRA} -- INFRASTRUCTURE

 

              THAT'S GOING TO CREATE MORE

 

              BUSINESS CREATION.

 

 

 

 

              THAT'S WHERE IT'S DIFFERENT,

 

              WHERE IT'S IN{SIS}IVE, AND THE

 

              RETURN ON INVESTMENT IS GOING TO

 

              BE OF TREMENDOUS BENEFIT TO

 

              VERMONT.

 

              IT'S GOING TO FILL OUR TAX ROLLS

 

              IN THE FUTURE.

 

              ONE OF THE QUESTIONS THAT ONE OF

 

              THE REPUBLICAN PARTNERS WHO IS

 

              SUPPORTIVE OF THIS BILL PUT

 

              BEFORE ME IS "WHAT HAPPENS TO

 

              VERMONT IF WE DON'T DO THIS?"

 

              WE'RE A NEUTRAL CONVENER OF

 

              PUBLIC PROCESS.

 

              WE DON'T THINK WE KNOW BETTER

 

              THAN THE PEOPLE WE BRING

 

              TOGETHER.

 

              WE BROUGHT PEOPLE TOGETHER

 

              AROUND THIS AS A PROBLEM,

 

              BECAUSE WHEN WE DID A STUDY ON

 

              THE COUNCIL, IT WAS THE LARGEST

 

              ANALYSIS OF PUBLIC VALUES AND

 

              PRIORITIES OF VERMONTERS OUTSIDE

 

              OF A GUBERNATORIAL ELECTION EVER

 

              IN VERMONT.

 

              PEOPLE ASKED WHY ARE YOU HERE?

 

 

 

 

              I DIDN'T COME TO VERMONT TO MAKE

 

              MONEY.

 

              I DIDN'T COME TO VERMONT BECAUSE

 

              -- I CAME TO VERMONT BECAUSE I

 

              LOVED WHAT IT STOOD FOR, FOR THE

 

              SENSE OF COMMUNITY, AND FOR MY

 

              CONNECTION TO THE LAND.

 

              THE BEAUTY IN THE LANDSCAPE, THE

 

              CONNECTION TO PEOPLE WHO WORK

 

              THE SOIL ARE INVALUABLE TO US AS

 

              A HERITAGE, BUT ALSO IT'S ALIVE.

 

              OUR OWN KIDS CAN PARTICIPATE,

 

              THEY CAN GO VISIT A FARM, THEY

 

              KNOW WHERE THEIR FOOD COMES

 

              FROM.

 

              IF YOU THINK ABOUT WHO HOLDS OUR

 

              LAND AND HAS SUSTAINED IT -- NOT

 

              ACCIDENTS.

 

              THE DECISIONS THAT HAVE ADVANCED

 

              IT ARE MADE BY INDIVIDUAL

 

              FAMILIES THINKING ABOUT THEIR

 

              ECONOMIC FUTURE AND HOW THEY

 

              SUSTAIN THEMSELVES.

 

              FOR VERMONT TO STAY VERMONT, WE

 

              HAVE ENCOURAGE THE CREATIVITY TO

 

              SET DIRECTIONS THAT WILL PROVIDE

 

 

 

 

              AN ECONOMIC FOUNDATION FOR THAT

 

              LAND IN THE FUTURE.

 

              WE WON'T PRESERVE IT BY PUBLIC

 

              FIAT, BY REGULATION, OR BY

 

              PUBLIC PURCHASE.

 

              WE HAVE TO DO IT WITH A REAL

 

              ECONOMY, AND THAT MEANS

 

              LEADERSHIP FROM THE PRIVATE

 

              SECTOR.

 

              SO THIS BILL IS ALL ABOUT

 

              ENCOURAGING THOSE PEOPLE TO TAKE

 

              RISKS TO MAKE THINGS HAPPEN AND

 

              TO BUILD AN ECONOMY THAT

 

              SUSTAINS THE LAND.

 

              >> WE HAVE ABOUT 90 SECONDS LEFT

 

              AT THIS POINT, BUT VERY QUICKLY,

 

              I WANTED TO GET TO:  THIS

 

              MEASURE IS ALSO CALLING FOR

 

              MUNICIPALITIES TO OFFER SOME TAX

 

              BREAKS TO PEOPLE WHO PARTICIPATE

 

              IN THIS.

 

              VERY BRIEFLY, CAN YOU SUM UP

 

              WHAT THAT REALLY MEANS?

 

              >> IT'S UNDER DISCUSSION, BUT

 

              IT'S ENVISIONED AS BEING A

 

              VOLUNTARY EFFORT TO MOVE TOWARD

 

 

 

 

              WHAT OTHER STATES CALL

 

              ENTERPRISE ZONES, WHERE CERTAIN

 

              BENEFITS WILL ACCRUE FROM

 

              CERTAIN ACTIVITIES.

 

              ONE PROPOSAL RELATES TO CAPITAL

 

              GAINS BENEFITS AND POSSIBLY

 

              ESTATE BENEFITS.

 

              THE COMMITTEE PROCESS WILL HAVE

 

              TO SORT THAT OUT TO SEE HOW

 

              PRACTICAL THAT IS, AND/OR ARE

 

              THERE OTHER BENEFITS WE CAN

 

              OFFER TO THAT DESIGNATION.

 

              >> IT'S A WORK IN PROGRESS, VERY

 

              MUCH SO, BUT IT WOULD BE -- IT'S

 

              DESIGNED TO BE KIND OF A

 

              PARALLEL TO SAY, WHAT CURRENT

 

              USE DID FOR PROPERTY-TAX EQUITY.

 

              >> REPRESENTATIVE STEVENS, PAUL

 

              COSTELLO, WE APPRECIATE YOUR

 

              TIME THIS MORNING AND LOOK

 

              FORWARD TO WHAT HAPPENS WITH

 

              THIS BILL DOWN THE WAY.

 

              >> SO DO WE.

 

              >> THANKS FOR JOINING US,

 

              EVERYBODY.

 

              WE'LL SEE YOU SOON.

 

 

 

 

              CAPTIONING PROVIDED BY CAPTION

 

              ASSOCIATES, LLC

 

              WWW.CAPTIONASSOCIATES.COM

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