Virtual Conference for Region’s Forest Landowners Scheduled for Oct. 27-28

— Written By

Forest landowners in northeastern North Carolina have the opportunity in late October to learn strategies to increase family wealth and conserve forestland and wildlife habitat. The North Carolina and Virginia Forest Landowner Conference will be held on October 27 and 28, 2020.

The conference will be held as a virtual event due to the COVID-19 pandemic and is free to the public. It is being organized by the Sustainable Forestry and Land Retention Project, which is supported in part by Roanoke Electric Cooperative (REC), and by the Durham-based Black Family Land Trust. REC President and Chief Executive Officer Curtis Wynn is the conference’s keynote speaker

The conference will feature three 90-minute sessions as follows:

  • Financial Assistance. 6–7:30 p.m. October 27
    Landowners will receive information on state and federal services and programs available to forestland owners and farmers in the form of cost-share programs and technical assistance.
  • Taxation. 10–11:30 a.m. October 28
    Landowners will receive information about Present Use Valuation and other programs with tax implications, as well as the role that Forest Management Plans play with regard to eligibility for these programs.
  • Economic Opportunities. 1–2:30 p.m. October 28
    Landowners will receive information about solar energy programs, recreational leasing, and other ways to derive income from their property.

This conference is sponsored through a grant from the N.C. Forest Service Stewardship Program. Register online. Forest landowners do not have to live in the region to participate. Phone charges and/or data rates may apply if participating via phone or over a mobile network.

The Sustainable Forestry and Land Retention Project began in 2013 as a partnership between the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, the U.S. Forest Service, and, more recently, the American Forest Foundation. The program works to restore and conserve threatened forestland in Roanoke Electric’s Cooperative’s service area by increasing forest-owner income and land asset values. All landowners owning at least one contiguous eight-acre parcel of woodland are eligible to participate. See the Roanoake Electric Cooperative website for more information on the program.

The Black Family Land Trust, incorporated in 2004, is one of the nation’s only conservation land trust dedicated to the preservation and protection of African-American and other historically underserved landowners’ assets. See the Black Family Land Trust website for more information on the organization.