Posts tagged ‘legal’
Like the idea of Community Supported Agriculture? Looking for ways to make a few bucks from your woodland? A Wisconsin family is trying Community Supported Forestry.
This is a pretty interesting idea: For an annual payment of $550, Roald Gundersen and Amelia Baxter of Hamburg, WI are offering unlimited access to their 140-acre wooded valley south of LaCrosse. Four of 20 spots have already sold. Read more about their operation on their website. More information is available on the Worldchanging blog and in this story from the LaCrosse Tribune.
As noted in a comment on this post, the concept is not entirely new: Woodland owners have been selling hunting leases, particularly in the southern US, for many years. But this is a new twist on the concept. The Community Supported Forestry concept is best described here by Vermont Family Forests.
(Thanks to the Community Forestry Resource Center, Vicky Sturdevant, and Pam Jakes for passing this along.)
The following announcement was distributed via email in early March 2009 by Neal Bungard, Forest Legacy Specialist, USDA Forest Service, Northeastern Area. This is an excellent and comprehensive guide to estate planning for woodland owners.
The document “Estate Planning for Forest Landowners: What Will Become of Your Timberland?” has been finalized an the electronic version was posted on the web yesterday. This document replaces the September 1993 document of the same name.
Download the publication (180 pages) or request a hard copy at http://www.srs.fs.fed.us/pubs/31987
Description: The purpose of this book is to provide guidelines and assistance to nonindustrial private forest owners and the legal, tax, financial, insurance, and forestry professionals who serve them on the application of estate planning techniques to forest properties. The book presents a working knowledge of the Federal estate and gift tax law as of September 30, 2008, with particular focus on the unique characteristics of owning timber and forest land. It consists of four major parts, plus appendices. Part I develops the practical and legal foundation for estate planning. Part II explains and illustrates the use of general estate planning tools. Part III explains and illustrates the use of additional tools that are specific to forest ownership. Part IV describes the forms of forest land ownership, as well as the basic features of State transfer taxes and the benefits of forest estate planning. The appendices include a glossary and the Federal forms for filing estate and gift taxes.
I’ve also added this link to our Intergenerational Land Transfer page.
Five important considerations affecting income taxes on Minnesota family forests.
A brief overview of conservation easements in Minnesota, with links to detailed publications and the Minnesota Land Trust.
An overview of harvesting and selling timber in Minnesota, with links to content on timber harvest contracts, visual impacts, selling timber, the future of your woodlands after harvest, and natural and artificial regeneration.
A brief overview of different widely accepted methods of selling timber: Lump sum, scale, and percentage. Also links to other useful related sites.
As you plan a timber sale, it is easy to focus on what can be taken out of the stand. However, as a landowner committed to the stewardship of your land, you need also to be thinking about what will be left behind. The trees that remain after the harvest are the ones that you’ll see every time you walk through the woods. They’re also the seed source for your future woods.
Every timber harvest should leave the woodland in a better condition than it was beforehand. This can happen in many different ways. Partial harvests should be designed to remove less desirable species and trees of relatively poor form. This will focus growing space on the best of your woodland, improving its vigor, quality, and value. Partial harvests are also a great way to grow big trees quickly.
The same concept applies to clearcut stands as well. Well planned and executed timber harvests can greatly improve the productive capacity of the woodlot. But details do matter. For example, harvesting aspen in the winter leads to more vigorous new growth.
Why? In spring and summer, most of the tree’s nutrients are in the growing parts of the tree: stem, twigs, and leaves. In winter, nutrients move from leaves to roots, where they’re stored until the next growing season. If you harvest in winter, these nutrients will be available for a fast, vigorous new growth. If you harvest in summer, the nutrients will be lost.
Details like this can have important impacts on your timber harvest experience. Before you harvest, talk to a forester who can help you plan ahead for a successful sale.