Making a living from the land is something Vermonters value even if they’re not doing it themselves.
But mill closings, globalization of the forest products industry and a decline in the number of dairy farms have raised concerns about keeping land productive.
Last session lawmakers passed the Working Lands Enterprise Investment Bill intended to help bolster the farm and forest economies. The bill created a Working Lands Enterprise Fund and a board to oversee the fund.
Today (11/29/12) the state issued the RFPs (requests for proposals) for grants under the fund. There’s a total of $986,500 available for “agricultural, forestry and forest product enterprises and organizations”. Application deadlines are in early 2013.