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Vermont Working Landscape Partnership

Working Lands Enterprise Board Announces Program Impacts on Vermont’s Economy and Communities
As seen on vtdigger.org: https://vtdigger.org/2017/02/09/working-lands-enterprise-board-announces... Press Release: Working Lands Enterprise Board Contact: Noelle SevoianNoelle.Sevoian@vermont.gov...
Center For The Agricultural Economy Leads Effort To Acquire Big Yellow Barn
As seen in the Caledonian Record: http://www.caledonianrecord.com/features/business/center-for-the-agricul... HARDWICK — The Center for an Agricultural Economy (CAE), working with a consortium of...
House approves $900,000 for ‘Working Lands’ grant program
As seen in vtdigger, by Mike Faher: https://vtdigger.org/2016/04/01/house-approves-900000-for-working-lands-... BRATTLEBORO — The state House wants to pump more cash into Vermont’s working lands....
Notes from Montpelier: Legislature working to reduce spending growth
As seen in the Reformer: http://www.reformer.com/localeditorials/ci_29692425/notes-from-montpelie... As expected, long hours were spent on the Floor of the House this week as we worked our way...
Write a letter to your local paper in support of WLEF funding for FY 2017
Write a letter to your local newspaper. (A list of papers with their email addresses is below.) Send your letter by email, and only send it to one paper at a time. Do not cc (or bcc) multiple...
Work the land
As seen in the Times Argus: http://tablet.olivesoftware.com/olive/Tablet/BarreTimesArgus/SharedArtic... There’s money in Vermont’s woods. More than that, there’s a way of life. The Vermont Working...
Working Lands Committee Releases Year-Long Report and New Mapping Tool
As seen in vtdigger.org: http://vtdigger.org/2016/03/01/working-lands-committee-releases-year-lon... On Thursday, February 25th, the Forestry Committee of the Working Lands Enterprise Board (WLEB)...
Video ~ Working Lands Enterprise Initiative helps VT working lands businesses thrive
A 6 min. overview of the Working Lands Enterprise Initiative - A State of Vermont sponsored grant program for working lands businesses looking to advance to their next stage. Featuring four grantees...
Working Lands end-of-year report points to success stories
As seen in vtdigger.org: http://vtdigger.org/2016/02/05/working-lands-end-of-year-report-points-t... A state investment fund credited with helping a growing group of businesses and farms was put on...
Video ~ Vermont’s Working Forests: Challenges and Opportunities
As seen on: http://middleburycommunitytv.org/2016/02/04/forestry-forum-at-the-vermon... From the Forestry Forum at the Vermont Folklife Center, panelists discuss challenges and opportunities of...
Calley Hastings Opinion: Support Working Lands Enterprise Fund
As seen in the Burlington Free Press: http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/story/opinion/my-turn/2016/01/26/opinion-support-working-lands-enterprise-fund/79366596/ Eight years ago when I started Fat...
Chris Brooks: Support Working Lands Enterprise Fund
As seen in the vtdigger.org: http://vtdigger.org/2016/01/21/chris-brooks-support-working-lands-enterprise-fund/ Editor’s note: This commentary is by Chris Brooks, who is the CEO and president of...
To the editor: Montpelier should support Working Lands Enterprise program
As seen in the Chester Telegraph: http://chestertelegraph.org/2016/01/19/to-the-editor-montpelier-should-support-working-lands-enterprise-program/ We are writing in support of the Working Lands...
‘Working Lands’ supporters lobby for funding
By Mike Faher, as seen in the vtdigger.org: http://vtdigger.org/2015/10/11/working-lands-supporters-lobby-for-fundin... BRATTLEBORO – Creamy goat-milk caramels have become a big business for...
Public support for conserving land in Vermont
Gil Livingston, President of the Vermont Land Trust, shares his perspective about the increase in public support for land conservation in their Fall 2015 newsletter.
Video ~ Working Lands Enterprise Initiative Grant Awards Ceremony
The 2015 Working Lands Grants were announced at Maple Wind Farm in Richmond in May 2015. Here are a couple videos of the event.
Testimony to Senate Appropriations: April 7, 2015
Madam Chair and Members of the Vermont Senate Appropriations Committee: I am Paul Costello, Executive Director of the Vermont Council on Rural Development. I’m here to speak as the coordinator for...
Letter to the editor: Working lands program worthwhile
A Page 1 article in Sunday’s Times Argus (“Serving notice”) notes that the Vermont food system is currently undergoing unprecedented growth, “from $6.9 billion to $8.6 billion between 2007 and 2012,...
Notes from Montpelier: Revenue shortfall will require tough decisions
Editorial published in the Brattleboro Reformer: http://www.reformer.com/localeditorials/ci_27621782/notes-from-montpelie... It's hard to believe that Town Meeting is here. I look forward to...
Digital tools having big impact on Vermont farms
In one way or other, Vermont farmers have always been drawn to new technologies, from innovations in horse-drawn plows to devices that bring them essential weather updates. Today, rapid advancements...
Allison Hooper Opinion: Connect people, places and food
Published in the Burlington Free Press: http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/story/opinion/my-turn/2015/01/22/opin... In Paris during my junior year of college, I spent the summer working on an...
Allison Hooper Commentary: Terroir grows from working lands
By Allison Hooper, co-founder of Vermont Creamery In Paris during my junior year of college, I spent the summer working on an organic farm. The French know where their food comes from, and they are...
Letter to the editor: Fund working lands program
Published in the Times Argus: http://www.timesargus.com/article/20141209/OPINION02/712099926 The Working Lands Enterprise Fund, an innovative and imaginative idea, was created in 2012 by Act 142....
Susan Alexander Commentary: Working Lands Grants lead to partnerships and growth
This commentary, by Susan Alexander, the founder of The Vermont Switchel Company in Cabot, was published on VtDigger.org: http://vtdigger.org/2014/11/26/susan-alexander-working-lands-grants-lead......
Working Lands Supporters
Thanks to the funders for their support of our Working Lands Initiative: Cabot Creamery Cooperative Castanea Foundation, Inc. Cellars at Jasper Hill David Blittersdorf Family Foundation Davis...
Farm, forestry projects share $1.1 million
By LISA RATHKE THE ASSOCIATED PRESS MORETOWN — Vermont awarded $1.1 million to 37 farm and forestry projects around the state Tuesday in the second year it offered working lands grants. Among the...
Grants designed to expand Vermont’s diversified farm economy
From VTDigger.org: http://vtdigger.org/2014/06/17/grants-designed-expand-vermonts-diversifi... The Working Lands Enterprise Initiative awarded 37 grants for agriculture and forestry projects Tuesday...
Working Lands Enterprise Board announces $1.1 million in grants to 37 Vermont entrepreneurs and providers
From Vermont Business Magazine: http://www.vermontbiz.com/news/june/working-lands-enterprise-board-annou... The Working Lands Enterprise Board announces this year’s grant recipients - 37 projects...
Vermont goat project links immigrants, farmers: New Americans look for meat they are used to eating in their home countries, and goat dairy farmers find a market for male kids
By Linda Rathke, Associated Press COLCHESTER, Vt. — A bunch of kids in a minivan are solving twin challenges in northern Vermont: refugees struggling to find the food of their homelands and farmers...
Working Lands Enterprise Board announces $300,000 to 19 working lands businesses
Vermont Business Magazine The Working Lands Enterprise Board announces this year’s grant recipients from its “Enterprise Investment” area awarding just under $300,000 of $1.2 million available to 19...
Costello Commentary: Leveraging Vermont’s Working Landscape Assets
By Paul Costello, VCRD Executive Director Vermonters have always known that our working landscape is our greatest asset. It drives our economy, brings tourists from away, and sustains the wonderful...
Advocates push for 'working landscapes' bill
BRATTLEBORO -- Former agriculture secretary Roger Allbee smiles when he talks about Vermont's farming renaissance in the last decade. He also beams when reviewing the industry's future. "The future...
Debevoise commentary: Support Vermont’s working lands
Editor’s note: This op-ed is by Tom Debevoise, the owner of Upwey Farm in South Woodstock. He served as chairman of the Council on the Future of Vermont in 2008-09. Sometimes I have trouble getting...
Stevens commentary: Working Lands initiative needs nurturing
Editor’s note: This op-ed is by Will Stevens, an organic market gardener and independent state representative from Shoreham. Last month, Gov. Shumlin announced his priorities for the upcoming...
Press Release: New Working Landscape Coalition Pushing for Farm and Forest Funding
December 19, 2012 ~ The Vermont Council on Rural Development announced today that a new leadership team has formed to advance Vermont’s working landscape by supporting state investments through the...
Leonard Bull: Hope springs for Vermont agriculture
Last year, the Vermont Legislature created the Working Lands Enterprise Fund and seeded it with a small investment of $1 million. We are now seeing our seeds growing, as agricultural and forest...
Costello Commentary: Investing in Working Lands
Last year Act 142 established the Working Lands Enterprise Board (WLEB) and Fund. Act 142 was both the jobs bill of 2012 and the agriculture and forest products policy bill of the decade. It...
Orton Commentary: Working Landscape
After 65 years of decline, Vermont's working landscape - farm and forest - is poised to reverse that trend with the help of two critical applications - and I don't mean manure and lime. The first...
Mihaly Commentary: Changing the world
VtDigger.org editor’s note: This op-ed is by Marc Mihaly, the president and dean of Vermont Law School. He is an expert in land use, urban planning, and energy law and policy. Vermont Law School is...
Video ~ Speeches from the Working Lands Enterprise Grant Awardees press conference
May 2, 2013 ~ Close to $220,000 was awarded to 20 grantees representing sectors across agriculture, forestry and forest products industry. Here are some of the speeches from the press conference...
Pellet company ups output with grant
Vermont Wood Pellet Company was among 16 companies and organizations to share more than $750,000 in grants from the Working Lands Enterprise Fund. The North Clarendon pellet mill received a $38,153...
Video ~ Vermont's Working Landscape: Keeping it Vital
VWLP’s video, Vermont’s Working Landscape: Keeping it Vital, looks at the difficulties facing our farm and forest economy as well as the opportunities the state can pursue to reverse alarming...
Vermont Working Landscape Partnership press conference, January 11, 2012
Several Vermont lawmakers and advocates announced the introduction of the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill on Wednesday morning in the Vermont statehouse. After a presentation to the...
Video ~ Reps testify on H.496 before the House Appropriations Committee 3/27/12
   Vermont Reps. Carolyn Partridge and Will Stevens testify on H.496, the Working Landscape Enterprise Investment Bill, before the House Appropriations Committee.
Video ~ VT Working Lands Bill Signing Ceremony
May 15, 2012 - Chuck Ross, VT Agriculture Secretary, and Paul Costello, Executive Director of the VT Council on Rural Development, speak at the signing of the Working Lands Enterprise Investment...
Vt. Investments Put Landscapes to Work
By Amy Shollenberger, http://www.dailyyonder.com/vt-investments-put-landscapes-work/2014/02/13/7207 In a state that is mostly forests and farmland, the Working Lands Enterprise initiative helps...
Video ~ Vermont Countryside interview about the Working Landscape Initiative
A Vermont Countryside show featuring Representative Will Stevens and Paul Costello from the Working Landscape Partnership will be broadcast on public access TV in Vermont at the end of November and...
Grants allow agricultural businesses to expand
By Peter Hirschfeld, Vermont Public Radio For Joe Buely, there was the matter of the potatoes. As Buely’s burgeoning soup-making operation took hold, the process of removing skin from spud was...
Video ~ Summit on the Future of Vermont's Working Landscape
Thanks to Orca Media for filming the Summit sessions that took place in Judd Hall and making the video available online. The day is broken out into 4 videos: Part 1 ~ Introductions and welcoming...
Thoughts about our working landscape
The experience and evolution of Vermont’s working landscape has been in my thinking recently, particularly as our communities work on issues of solar arrays, wind towers, and zoning regulations with...
Video ~ Working lands group accepting grants to benefit farms
BURLINGTON, Vt. - The Working Lands Enterprise Board is accepting applications for grants. Winners will be people from the agriculture and forest sectors who are advancing entrepreneurism, business...
Letter: Vermont Working Lands Summit
To the Editor: On Dec. 17, hundreds of Vermonters will come together at Vermont Technical Center in Randolph to celebrate the success of the Working Lands Enterprise Fund and to identify actions to...
Leaders eye ‘working landscape’
By Kevin O'Connor, Times Argus: RANDOLPH — When Gov. Peter Shumlin was growing up a half-century ago, Vermont’s agricultural engine was fueled by milk: “If you had asked people outside the dairy...
Working Lands Summit Shows Return on Investment
RANDOLPH, VT -- Over 350 Vermonters gathered at Vermont Technical College on Tuesday for a day of celebration, learning, and reporting on the results of the Working Lands Enterprise Fund investments...
Can Vermont Forestry Be As Popular As Vermont Farming?
By Steve Zind, Vermont Public Radio Business owners, public officials, policy makers and advocates gathered Tuesday at a summit in Randolph Center to take stock of efforts to preserve the state’s...
Integrity of current use program vital to its success, stakeholders say
Without the state’s current use tax program, “Vermont probably wouldn’t have a working landscape,” says a former president of the Vermont Land Trust. Darby Bradley opened a panel discussion on the...
Vt. summit aims to seed ‘working landscape’
RANDOLPH — When Gov. Peter Shumlin was growing up a half-century ago, Vermont’s agricultural engine was fueled by milk: “If you had asked people outside the dairy industry then to get together and...
A forum on the future of Vermont's working landscape points to progress, problems
The low-hanging jargon lifted quickly. By the end of the day Tuesday, the dozens of folk who gathered in Randolph to mull the future of Vermont’s rural economy had boiled the conundrum down to two...
Working Lands in Governor's Budget
Last week, Governor Shumlin delivered his budget address to the Vermont legislature, and in that address, he showed a renewed commitment to the Working Lands Enterprise Fund. Importantly, he stated...
Exotic lumber sells: Farm to Plate meets innovative Forest to Table
A $100,000 grant from the Working Lands Enterprise Fund to the Vermont Housing and Conservation Board will support the delivery of The Forest Viability Program. Participants will receive in-depth,...
Securing the Future of Vermont’s Working Landscape
By Jeremy Carter, The Bridge: http://www.montpelierbridge.com/2014/01/securing-the-future-of-vermonts-... On December 17, 2013, temperatures plummeted, snow plastered the streets and schools closed...
Working Lands Enterprise Initiative
The 2012 Legislative session brought with it a renewed commitment to Vermonter’s values by passing the Working Lands Enterprise Initiative, Act 142 (http://www.leg.state.vt.us/docs/2012/Acts/ACT142....
Act 142: Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill
The Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill turned the recommendations in the Vermont Working Landscape Partnership’s Action Plan into legislative language for consideration by Vermont...
Working Lands Coalition
The Working Lands Coalition members have joined together to support farm, forest and value‐added development for the future by systematically encouraging significant additional public investment in...
Working Lands In Action
We are actively working to promote the growth of the WLEF fund through the Working Lands Coalition, which we convened to support continued public funding for farm and forest enterprises, with a goal...
About the Working Landscape Partnership
Vermonters and visitors value our working landscape for all its scenic, cultural, economic, environmental and recreational benefits. However, if alarming trends are not reversed it will vanish within...
Take a Tour of Working Lands
1. Start your tour of Vermont's rural renaissance with this video of a few of the 2013 Working Lands Enterprise Fund grant awardees sharing their stories and vision. And update from...
Conference Focuses on Financing Working Lands
Vermont Public Radio: http://digital.vpr.net/post/conference-focuses-financing-working-lands According to those working to improve farming and forestry opportunities in Vermont, the state is...
2010 Summit on the Future of Vermont's Working Landscape
The Vermont Council for Rural Development sponsored the State House summit on December 10, 2010 of more than 300 people from agriculture, forestry, business, and public policy. The day highlighted...
Costello Commentary: Advancing the Vermont Forest Economy
In August, VCRD was honored to serve as a partner with the Windham Foundation to facilitate their thirty-fifth Grafton Conference. On the 50th year anniversary of the foundation, they wisely chose...
Working Lands “Service Provider” and “Capital and Infrastructure” grants will be announced at June 18 Press Conference
16 Grantees will Receive Over $750,000 in Total Funding Governor Peter Shumlin, Agency of Agriculture Secretary Chuck Ross, Agency of Commerce and Community Development Secretary Lawrence Miller,...
Vermont agribusiness service providers expand to include wood product industry
Montpelier - Business planning and technical assistance previously available to the agricultural sector is growing to include wood product and forestry industry businesses. The Vermont Farm Viability...
2013 Working Lands Enterprise Fund Grant Recipients Announced
The Working Lands Enterprise Board (WLEB) comprised of public and private sector members involved in agriculture, forestry, and/or forest products was responsible for allocating over $1 million in...
Grants for local apple, meat-cutting projects aims to fuel local foods movement
ADDISON COUNTY — Nearly $100,000 in grants to two local apple operations announced last week, plus additional grants supporting meat-cutting and composting efforts, aim to help businesses cultivating...
2013 Working Lands grants awarded
MONTPELIER — The state has announced $750,000 in grants as part of its Working Lands Enterprise Initiative. The grants for service providers as well as capital and infrastructure were given as part...
Windham County rakes in big grants
BRATTLEBORO -- Windham County's agricultural business community got a big boost Tuesday when the latest recipients of the state's Working Lands Enterprise Fund were announced. More than $750,000 in...
Gov. Shumlin announces final 16 grantees of the 2013 Working Lands Fund
MONTPELIER – Gov. Peter Shumlin, Agriculture, Food & Markets Secretary Chuck Ross, Commerce & Community Development Secretary Lawrence Miller, Forests, Parks & Recreation Commissioner...
Working Lands awards $750,000 in 2013 grants
Vermonters in the forestry and agriculture sectors got a helping hand from the state on Tuesday. The Working Lands Enterprise Initiative awarded 16 local businesses a total of $750,000 in grant money...
Vermont fine furniture company receives $100,000 working lands grant award
Vermont Woods Studios online fine furniture to be awarded a $100,000 working lands Grant Award. The Vermont Woods Studios was selected to receive a $100,000 grant to be used to complete the...
Video ~ Paul Costello on Bill Doyle's TV show
In this 30 minute video, Paul talks about Vermont's investments in farm and forest enterprises and the history of the Working Lands Enterprise initiative.
Two Important Developments: Working Lands and Farm Bill
As a neutral policy and community development convener, VCRD is rarely directly connected to legislative matters but we are excited today about two important developments! ******* First, as the...
Compendium of press for the first round of working lands grants
On Wednesday May 2nd the Working Lands Enterprise Board announced the first farm and forest enterprises to receive grant funds made available through funds build through Act 142 last year. Here are a...
Gov. Shumlin announces 20 grantees of Working Lands Enterprise
MONTPELIER, 5/2/13 – Gov. Peter Shumlin, Agriculture Secretary Chuck Ross, Forest, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Michael Snyder and the Working Lands Enterprise Board today announced the first...
Working Lands Enterprises are Growing Throughout the State
The Working Lands Enterprise Board received a total of 387 applications for the three investment areas, for a total requested amount of $11,569,397. Some examples of requests include processing...
Vermont Lawmakers Support Working Lands Investment: Five million per year for three years will build a strong working lands economy
MONTPELIER, VT – A coalition of lawmakers today delivered a “Dear Colleague” letter to the Vermont House and Senate Appropriations Committees, in support of the “five-by-three” investment for the...
Working Lands Coalition Calls for “5-by-3” Investment: Five million per year for three years will build a strong working lands economy
Members of the Working Lands Coalition launched their “5-by-3” campaign on Wednesday, February 13, 2013, at the Vermont State House. The day included an early morning presentation to the Rural...
Working Lands Coalition 5x3 campaign launch in the press
Here are a few recent articles about the launch of the Coalitions 5x3 campaign requesting $5M for each of the next three years: Big rush for 'Working Lands' cash, Brattleboro Reformer State...
Working landscape groups look for $15 million boost over three years
by Andrew Stein | vtdigger.org | February 14, 2013 Vermont agriculture, forestry and conservation groups are asking the Legislature to set aside $5 million annually over the next three years to...
A tale of three cities
By Tara Kelly, in A Weekly Column from the Rutland Area Farm and Food Link Lately, I’ve been thinking about the communities I’ve lived in and their relationships with local food and agriculture....
Len Bull Commentary: Working lands fund needs continued legislative support
Editor’s note: This op-ed is by Dr. Leonard Bull, who was a professor of animal sciences at the University of Vermont and North Carolina State University. He is currently chair of the Vermont...
184 agriculture entrepreneurs vie for slices of “working lands” pie
Pent up demand for investment capital among agriculture entrepreneurs has sparked a massive response to the inaugural “Working Lands Enterprise Initiative.” As part of an attempt to fuel a “...
Working Lands Enterprise Initiative Receives $9 million in Request for Funds
Media Advisory, January 18, 2013 ~ The Working Lands Enterprise Board solicited Letters of Intent (LOI) for two of three investment areas (Capital & Infrastructure, and Service Providers) and...
Donath Commentary ~ Working lands, our Vermont home
Editor’s note: This op-ed is by David A. Donath, president of the Woodstock Foundation, which operates the Billings Farm & Museum, an operating dairy farm dedicated to telling the story of...
Press Release: New Working Landscape Coalition Pushing for Farm and Forest Funding
December 19, 2012 ~ The Vermont Council on Rural Development announced today that a new leadership team has formed to advance Vermont’s working landscape by supporting state investments through the...
Farm and Forestry Interests to Seek Greater State Investment
By Pat Bradley ~ click here to listen to the broadcast A coalition of groups plans to lobby the Vermont Legislature in the upcoming session for additional funding for infrastructure investments in...
Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Fund and Initiative Launches
The Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets is pleased to announce the creation of the Working Lands Enterprise Board (WLEB), a newly appointed board which will create and execute a fast-...
Planning Commission Welcomes Agripreneurs to Hinesburg
Here's an email update we received from a member of the Hinesburg Planning Commission. Paul, Keep up the forward progress on the Working Landscape Partnership! I thought you might like to hear...
New law aims to grow Vt farming, forestry
SHOREHAM, Vt. - If there is any question how important rolling fields and forests are to Vermont, consider this. "Agriculture is in the neighborhood of 20 percent of the land base, forestry is about...
Video ~ Governor Shumlin's speech at the signing of the Working Lands Enterprise bill 5/15/12
Yesterday in St. Albans, Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin signed into law the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill (H.496). At the signing, Governor Shumlin noted that this initiative is the...
Working Lands Bill Moving toward Enactment: Governor expected to sign bill Tuesday afternoon
MONTPELIER, VT – Legislators gave final approval to the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill (H.496) in the final days of the session, and sent the bill to the Governor’s desk. Governor Shumlin...
Natural resources: 'It was a pretty good year for the environment'
Candace Page of the Burlington Free Press (www.burlingtonfreepress.com) interviewed Brian Shupe, Executive Director of the Vermont Natural Resources Council. He discusses the working landscape effort...
Tom Slayton Commentary: Working landscape is our signature
I believe that the working landscape of Vermont — that familiar tapestry of farm fields, forests, small cities and compact villages — is vital to the future of Vermont, and is endangered. The...
Landscape at work
The passage of a bill this year to boost farm and forest enterprise says something about the pervasive and enduring commitment of Vermonters to the rural character of their state. The bill was the...
Working lands’ viewed as victory in House and Senate
By PETER HIRSCHFELD, VERMONT PRESS BUREAU MONTPELIER — The idea wasn’t new — energize a flagging agriculture sector by treating farm-based enterprises like dot.com startups. But backers of the “...
Vt. Senate Passes 'Working Lands' Bill
The Vermont Senate has passed a bill designed to jump start farm and forestry projects. The "working lands" bill sets up a board that will oversee a fund to promote agriculture and forest ventures....
Agreement Reached on Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill: Final bill moving toward governor’s desk
MONTPELIER, VT – Legislative conferees reached agreement on the Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill (H.496) in the wee hours of the morning on Thursday. All six conference committee members...
Costello Commentary: Support funding for Vermont Working Lands
Editor’s note: This op-ed is by Paul Costello, executive director of the Vermont Council on Rural Development, which is coordinating the work of the Vermont Working Landscape Partnership. Right now...
Vermont Senate approves working landscape bill
BENNINGTON -- The Vermont Senate gave final approval Monday to a bill that proponents say will enhance the state’s farming and forest industries. The Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill, which...
Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill Approved by Vermont Senate
House & Senate will work to resolve minor differences and agree to funding amount MONTPELIER, VT – The Vermont Senate gave preliminary approval to the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill (H...
Letter to the editor: Applause for the Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill
Thank you, Mike Yantachka, for voting in favor of the Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill (H.496). Charlotte is blessed with some of the most fertile land in all of Vermont. Before moving to...
Slayton commentary: Working landscape is Vermont’s signature
Editor’s note: This op-ed is by Tom Slayton, a journalist, writer, radio commentator, and retired editor of Vermont Life Magazine, who lives in Montpelier. I believe that the working landscape of...
Stevens commentary: Working Lands bill is sound policy
Editor’s note: This op-ed is by Rep. Will Stevens, an independent from Shoreham who is a member of the House Agriculture Committee. He and his wife own Golden Russet Farm. I’ve often been asked, “...
Audio: Paul Costello testimony in the Senate Ag Committee
Listen to Paul Costello share his perspectives on the Working Land Enterprise Bill with the Senate Agriculture Committee: http://www.action-circles.com/wl/paulcostelloagcmteapril2012.mp3.
Scott Buckingham commentary ~ My turn: Growing our future economy
Vermont has an extraordinary and growing wealth of talent, energy, and entrepreneurial interest in its agricultural and forest products sectors. With the state's working lands economy at a turning...
2012 Doyle Town Meeting Day survey results
The 2012 Doyle Town Meeting Day survey results are in and show that 89% of Vermonters believe that the state should continue to support our working farms and forests. Click here to see all the...
Bills target working lands for economic development assistance
The following article was published in the April/May 2012 Vermont Property Owners Report. (Reproduced here with permission) It has become common for states, including Vermont, to compete for jobs...
Working Lands Investments allocated $2.1 million; House vote is Thursday
Parallel bills to invest in rural economic development have cleared key hurdles in the House and the Senate, and the House version is scheduled for a vote Thursday. The bills create a Working Lands...
Vermont House of Representatives Supports Working Lands Bill: House gives initial approval to bill with non-partisan vote
MONTPELIER, VT – The Vermont House of Representatives gave initial approval for the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill (H.496) on Thursday afternoon with a 131-5 vote. The bill includes a...
House Supports Bill To Preserve Working Landscape
Vermont Public Radio ~ (Host) The House has given its strong support to legislation that's designed to provide opportunities to strengthen the state's agricultural sector. The legislation allocates...
Letter to the Editor: Support our working landscape
SANDGATE ~ If you love the beautiful setting of Vermont, with its rolling farmlands graced with forested backdrops of the Green Mountains or Taconic Range, then thank a farmer, a forester or a logger...
Video ~ Reps testify on H.496 before the House Appropriations Committee
   Vermont Reps. Carolyn Partridge and Will Stevens testify on H.496, the Working Landscape Enterprise Investment Bill, before the House Appropriations Committee.
Working lands bill unanimously supported by House Agriculture
House Agriculture Committee Votes Unanimously to Support the Bill MONTPELIER, VT—The Vermont House Agriculture committee gave their unanimous support to the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill...
House Agriculture Committee just says ‘yes’ to working lands bill
MONTPELIER– Remember that “working lands” bill we wrote about a while back? Since then the House and Senate Agriculture committees have taken weeks of testimony on legislation that would create a...
Letter to the editor: Benefits us all
Letter to the editor of the Times Argus by Dan Breslaw of West Corinth: I hear a lot of arguments over whether the government or the private sector should be planning our future. What I like best...
Press Release: House Agriculture Committee Votes Unanimously to Support the Bill
Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill Moves Forward House Agriculture Committee Votes Unanimously to Support the Bill MONTPELIER, VT—The Vermont House Agriculture committee gave their...
Letter to the editor: Support Working Lands bill
Audrey Famette of Montpelier, submitted her letter to the editor of the Bridge. Click here to read it.
Letter to the editor: League of Women Voters
02/20/12 ~ Support working lands bill. The League of Women Voters of Vermont supports the Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill (H.496/S.246). The League recognizes that some land-use decisions...
Letter to the editor: Nancy Wayne Jaffe
Shelburne resident, Nancy Wayne Jaffe, writes in support of the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill. Click here to read her letter to the editor of the Shelburne News.
Letter to the editor: Protecting our resources
Ruth Wallman, Executive Director of the Champlain Islands Chamber of Commerce, wrote a letter to the St. Albans Messenger in support of the Working Land Enterprise bill. Click here to read her letter...
Bob Foster Commentary: Working landscapes bill holds hope for Vt
Our heritage is our working landscape. Agriculture and forestry are the backbone of our working landscape. Vermont is a small state and has limited resources. Therefore we need to use them wisely and...
Bill bolsters ag, forest and food processing
MONTPELIER — Vermont lawmakers are working on legislation that aims to bolster Vermont’s economy while retaining the hallmarks of its rural landscape. The main focus in both the House and Senate...
Working the land
Editorial by David Moats, Rutland Herald/Times-Argus, 2/5/2012 ~ Vermonters from one end of the state to the other, of all political persuasions and demographic groups, rank the vitality and beauty...
Working landscape
MONTPELIER — “I dip therefore I yam” is a motto that belongs to Lisa Johnson of Norwich, who testified recently about a niche product, Yummy Yams, she is producing from a crop seldom seen on the...
Vermont wood products industry releases '2020 Vision' report
VermontBiz.com, 1/30/2012 ~ The Vermont Wood Products Marketing Council has released a new ten year strategic plan entitled, “A 2020 Vision for the Vermont Wood Products Sector,” prepared by industry...
Video ~ Rep. Stevens at the Rural Economic Development Caucus, 1/25/12
Representative Will Stevens presenting to the Rural Economic Development Caucus on January 25, 2012 on the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill:
Press Release: Legislative Panel Hears Strong Support for Working Lands Bill
MONTPELIER, VT – Vermont Rural Jobs Bill Draws a Crowd: A legislative panel holding a public hearing on the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill found a statehouse room packed to capacity...
Tweets ~ January 18th Public Hearing on the Working Landscape Bill
Click HERE to read the tweets from the public hearing.
Video ~ Clips from the January 18th public hearing on the working landscape
Over 100 people came to the Public Hearing for the Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill on January 18th, and over 40 testified on the bill. Here are a few scenes from the hearing:  
Video ~ WCAX You Can Quote me: Vermont's Working Landscape
January 22, 2012 -- Paul Costello and Rep. Will Stevens, I-Shoreham, join Darren Perron and Keith McGilvery to discuss Vermont's working landscape. Watch the video here: http://www.wcax.com/category...
Working landscape
From: http://www.reformer.com/ci_19750382?IADID=Search-www.reformer.com-www.reformer.com Representative Carolyn Partridge, Chair of the House Agriculture Committee, overviews H.496, the Working...
Allbee Commentary: This is a bold initiative
ST. ALBANS — Two Franklin County legislators from opposite sides of the political aisle have joined forces in a bid to improve the development of agricultural and forestry products and businesses in...
WAMC Radio: Bill to Invest in Vermont's Agriculture and Forest Sectors Introduced
MONTPELIER, VT (WAMC) - Pat Bradley of WAMC Northeast Public Radio interviewed Paul Costello (Executive Director at VCRD), Will Stevens (member of the House and a lead sponsor on the bill), and Kate...
Editorial: Getting to the character of Vermont
From: http://www.benningtonbanner.com/opinion/ci_19732185 BENNINGTON BANNER - It was heartening to see that a bill to create the Working Lands Enterprise investment, promotion, coordination and...
Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill Draws Support: Lawmakers and Advocates Stand Together for Vermont’s Future
MONTPELIER VT, 1/12/2012 – Several Vermont lawmakers and advocates announced the introduction of the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill on Wednesday morning in the Vermont statehouse....
Vt. bill would promote value-added ag, forestry
New Vermont legislation that appears to have broad support seeks to promote turning milk into cheese, apples into cider and trees into furniture as keys to keeping the state's working landscape of...
Through Grants, Bill Would Invest In Working Landscape
From: http://www.vpr.net/news_detail/93023/through-grants-bill-would-invest-in-working-landsc/ (Host) Turning milk into cheese, apples into cider and trees into furniture are some of the key ways to...
Vermont Working Landscape Partnership press conference
Several Vermont lawmakers and advocates announced the introduction of the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Investment bill on Wednesday morning in the Vermont statehouse. After a presentation to the...
Vermont bill looks to move more businesses beyond raw materials
MONTPELIER, Vt. — Turning milk into cheese, apples into cider and trees into furniture are the keys to keeping Vermont's working landscape vital in the future. That's the idea behind a bill...
Best of both worlds: Protecting Vt, adding jobs
(1/10/12) MONTPELIER — In an effort to preserve the character of Vermont’s rural landscape and create jobs, the Vermont Council on Rural Development will tout legislation this week that it says would...
Proposal backs agriculture, small business, Vermont's rural economy
BENNINGTON - As lawmakers return to Montpelier for the second year of the legislative biennium, a coalition of advocates is hoping they will consider legislation aimed at enhancing Vermont's working...
Schubart Commentary ~ Vermont must invest in working farms and forests
From: http://vtdigger.org/2012/01/01/schubart-vermont-must-invest-in-working-farms-and-forests/ Editor’s note: This op-ed is by Bill Schubart, a regular commentator for Vermont Public Radio and...
VPR Commentary Series ~ Schubart: Fragile Landscape
From: http://www.vpr.net/episode/52649/schubart-fragile-landscape/ (Host) Commentator Bill Schubart has been paying attention to a new initiative by a broad base of Vermonters to ensure that Vermont...
VPR Commentary Series ~ Krupp: The Working Landscape
From: http://www.vpr.net/episode/52633/krupp-working-landscape/ (Host) What will the New Year hold for farming, food and forestry in the Green Mountain state?  Commentator Ron Krupp looks at the...
Creative Corner: 'Natural resource renaissance' rests on state's desire to invest in land
Paul Costello, VCRD's Executive Director, is thankful for Vermont's farm and forest stewards and the tremendous spirit of entrepreneurial energy they bring. The Working Landscape Partnership believes...
Commentary: After 50 years Vermont's environmental movement is still evolving
Everyone is familiar with the concepts that Charles Darwin’s controversial theory inspired: that all life descended from a common ancestry, that bio-diversity contributes to species’ survival and...
The Working Landscape Initiative on Across the Fence in October 2011
October 2011 - Watch 2 episodes with Vermont Working Landscape Council members on Across the Fence by clicking the titles below. The episodes include: 10/27/11 — Investing in Vermont’s Farm and...
Invest in our future
George Aiken really was the man with a plan. When he was governor, he took many of the qualities of Vermont he loved and built policy around them. Nearly all of the public policy he solidified had...
Council: State should invest in Vt.’s rural resources
By Thatcher Moats, VERMONT PRESS BUREAU MONTPELIER — A Vermont group hoping to revitalize the state’s rural economy and preserve its “working landscape” said the state should invest at least $15...
Revitalizing Vermont’s Rural Economy - Campaign Launched
JERICHO— Today, members representing the Vermont Working Landscape Partnership (VWLP) launched the Revitalizing Vermont’s Rural Economy campaign. The campaign is focused on achieving the five goals...
Video ~ Revitalizing Vermont’s Rural Economy Campaign Launch
Videos of the press event on October 18, 2011. Speakers include Roger Allbee, Christa Alexander, Peter Condaxis, and Marie Audet.
ANRSecretary, foresters meet to review policy following Irene
BRATTLEBORO - Secretary Deb Markowitz with the Agency of Natural Resources met with Vermont’s county foresters Wednesday afternoon to report on damage following Tropical Storm Irene and provide an...
Report Offers Clear Actions for Vermont’s Working Landscape
MONTPELIER, VT – The Vermont Working Landscape Partnership announces the release of Investing in our Farm and Forest Future. This nonpartisan Action Plan offers five recommendations to help...
Working Landscape Action Plan: Investing in our Farm and Forest Future - 2012
Investing in our Farm and Forest Future is the final report of the Vermont Working Landscape Partnership Council. It offers five recommendations to help reinvigorate the state’s rural economy: Build...
Animation of Vermont dairy cows being rescued during tropical storm Irene
A former Vermonter now living in Brooklyn--Isaac Littlejohn Eddy-produced this animated short for TIME.com It captures how floods from Tropical Storm Irene threatened the dairy cows at Vermont's...
Back to the land in Vermont … again? Some see strong signs
Monty Fischer, the energetic director of the nonprofit Center for an Agricultural Economy, is responsible for helping to spur local food initiatives in Hardwick. The center is an educational...
Across the Fence episode on Vermont's Working Landscape Partnership
Click the small green play button on the player below to watch this episode of "Across the Fence" which aired 4/8/11 with Paul Costello and Roger Allbee talking about the Vermont Working Landscape...
Vt Working Landscape Council to address farm and forest economy
MONTPELIER, VT – Surveys repeatedly show Vermonters want a strong working landscape for all its scenic, cultural, economic, environmental and recreational benefits. However if alarming trends that...
A Vital Farm and Forest Economy is the Key to Our Future ~ A Commentary by Roger Allbee
In the mid 1800s Vermont was considered the bread basket of New England. Farmers in the Champlain Valley area were producing wheat, barley and oats. In other regions of the state farmers were growing...
Costello Commentary: Investing in Vermont's working landscape
In early December over 300 farmers and foresters, policy and nonprofit leaders, innovative entrepreneurs, business owners and advocates, packed the State House, attracted by the prospect of a new...
The Future of Vermont’s Working Landscape is New Farmers
Blogpost by Ben Waterman of UVM's New Farmer Project. New farmers will play a lead role in preserving the integrity of Vermont’s future working landscape. On Friday I joined about 300 other...
Summit on the Future of Vermont’s Working Landscape Draws 300
The Vermont Statehouse was packed on December 10 as over 300 people gathered to celebrate Vermont’s working landscape and to offer their help in preserving it in the future. The Vermont Council of...
Plan seeks to preserve Vt.'s open landscape
MONTPELIER — At a summit in Montpelier this past Friday, members of the Vermont Council on Rural Development’s Working Landscape Partnership laid out a plan that they hope will preserve and bolster...
Future of Vermont study finds second wind
By KEVIN O’CONNOR, STAFF WRITER Supporters believe the Council on the Future of Vermont’s 2009 report on concerns facing the state in coming decades was ahead of its time. But that wasn’t why...
Report recommends “action steps” for working landscape
By Anne Galloway, vtdigger.org ~ On the face of it, the 300 or so Vermonters who gathered at the Statehouse on Friday didn’t have much in common. They represented disparate interests — state and...
Key Findings of the Summit on the Future of Vermont’s Working Landscape - 2010
Participants at the Summit on the Future of Vermont’s Working Landscape shared their commitment to advancing the enterprise that serve as the foundation for the future vitality of rural lands and...
Video ~ Watch "The Future of Vermont's Working Landscape Summit" held at the State House on December 10, 2010
The Vermont Council for Rural Development sponsored the State House summit of more than 300 people from agriculture, forestry, business, and public policy. The day highlighted the continuing crisis...
Audio: Paul Costell talking about the Working Lands Summit
WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley talks with Paul Costello about the upcoming Summit on Vermont's Working Landscape being held Friday in Montpelier. Listen to the interview.
Our Working Landscape and Our Future - Donath Commentary
In the hearts of most Vermonters, our state is first among the great places in America. Vermont is also a great, unspoiled place in the imaginations of its visitors, and in the minds of many...
Commentary: Time to move Vermont forward
Sue Allen, Executive Director of Renewable Energy Vermont (former) My thoughts were on election issues as I grained the Scottish Highlands last Tuesday morning. I was reminded that Vermont farms,...
UVM Research Report: Strategies for Promoting Working Landscapes in North America and Europe
With the goal of assisting government, environmental, and planning leaders in their attempts to meet the on‐going challenges of promoting a vibrant working landscape in Vermont, this report (written...
Costello Commentary: Working lands futures
Paul, VCRD Executive Director, reflects on his cross-country bike trip and the working landscape effort we are embarking on. 2010 - Early this summer I rode my bike from the west coast home to...
Rural Businesses Grow Faster Together
Rural businesses grow bigger and faster when they are closer together. In Vermont, a cluster of food-related businesses is thriving. The state needs to make sure this group of businesses has access...
Strengthening food system in Vermont
Last year, the Legislature established the Farm to Plate (F2P) Initiative, which asked the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund (VSJF) to do a comprehensive inventory of the food-related assets and...
The importance of a working landscape
By ROGER ALLBEE There has been a lot of discussion recently about Vermont's working landscape. We know, for example, that 97 percent of Vermonter's say they want a working landscape for their state...
Vermont Regional Food Centers Collaborative: Advancing Food Systems through Learning, Planning and Action
This 2009 platform paper outlines the challenges, vision, goals, and workplan in support Vermont farms and local agriculture economies with contact information of the collaborative members and their...
Residents in charge of state's future
What Vermonters are most concerned about is universal -- preserving the working landscape, fortifying the unity of their communities, retaining the Vermont "brand," creating local energy sources,...
Futurists worry that Vermont farms have become too reliant on milk
By KEVIN O'CONNOR Staff Writer The Council on the Future of Vermont knows the state treasures its farms and forests. So why is it asking if there's too much of a good thing? Surveying almost 4,000...
Editorial: Working landscape for past and present
We Vermonters like our beautiful state, but think it is getting harder to afford to live here. The Council on the Future of Vermont asked hundreds of Vermonters about their values and concerns and...
Poll says Vermonters value landscape, community
A new poll confirms some long-held assumptions about Vermonters. They cherish the state's working landscape ... its sense of community... and its independence. But the poll also shows that people...