Vermont Traditions Coalition,
PO Box 622,
Hinesburg, VT 05461,
LEGISLATIVE SCORE CARD
From: Ed Larson, Frank Stanley &
Contributing VTC Delegates
Your involvement made a difference.
Early Friday morning, May 19, 2017, just after midnight, the
Legislature finally went home. It was a rather strange night
and the lightning storm was the icing on the cake.
session had all the ingredients to cause great harm to our
traditions, but in the end, we are able call it a session
that “Did No Harm”. It could have been different if it
wasn’t for VTC's Statewide Volunteer Network and our
partner organizations. Your strong response to the VTC Alert
on the Berlin Pond issue is one example. The Sergeant at
Arms office informed us that, during the committee hearing
on Berlin Pond, we set a record for the number of phone
calls to the Sergeant at Arms Office with each call
resulting in hand carried messages brought into the
committee room. We were also told that legislative message
deliverers were busy the day H.233, forest fragmentation and
Act 250 was debated on the House floor. We also packed the
Statehouse cafeteria a few times with two sportsmen’s social
events with legislators and a Vermont Forest Products
Association (VFPA) and Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI)
joint Legislative Breakfast event. Many thanks to all of you
who contributed to these important efforts.
We turned back legislation to regulate Berlin Pond, there
were no new gun laws, no addition of
anti-hunters and trappers to the Fish and Wildlife Board,
and efforts to reduce the coyote hunting season did not
pass. We improved several bills and thereby prevented harm
to Vermont’s rural traditions. VTC addressed unintended
consequences in the aquatic nuisance control bill, and we
improved opportunities for our voice in the Act 250 Study
Commission bill so as to protect rural occupational and
recreational interests from over regulation. We defended the
Recreational Trail Fund, and fortified the funding for the
Lake Champlain Walleye Association to continue their good
work restoring walleye fisheries. In a big win for our
retirees; VTC delegate, Bert Saldi, became a key leader in
the successful effort to reverse the legislation from the
previous legislative session that raised the qualifying age
for a free permanent hunting-fishing license from age
sixty-five to age seventy. Working together we were able to
get the qualifying age for a free hunting-fishing license
reduced to age sixty-six. Regulating pet shelters without
being unreasonably restrictive has been controversial and
elusive. However, with VTC leadership working with the
Federation of Dog Clubs, we were able to find a consensus
with most all interested parties and put a reasonable bill
on the Governor’s desk.
It was because we work together that resulted in our new
Governor appointing one of our own, Sam Lincoln, to Deputy
Commissioner of Forests, Parks and Recreation. A
well-respected farmer/logging contractor from Randolph is
becoming a key leader in addressing challenges in keeping
our forest products industry strong.
Frank and Ed were tracking close to 60 bills. Except for
those that have passed or merged into another bill, these
bills are potentially up for action next year along with
another round of new bills that will be introduced. VTC’s
work is never finished!
The forest fragmentation Act 250 bill is poised to start the
session in the Senate. Everything is in play next year so we
need to be vigilant and continue to increase our base of
Now in its 16th year, the Vermont Traditions Coalition is
strong, viable and relevant. However, we must always
remember, we can never let up or get complacent. VTC
diligently looks for information and tracks anything that
could degrade our rural Vermont recreational and
occupational traditions year-round. VTC’s full time,
year-round effort is only possible with the financial
support from our member organizations and supporting
individuals and businesses. Our effort to fund this
organization is an important role for all of us that believe
we can keep our traditions alive in Vermont, our rural
communities viable and the rural economies, both working
lands and outdoor recreation, vital. Working together to
grow our constituencies, gain more supporters and strengthen
our partnerships is an ongoing endeavor.
At this time of year, we review how our member organizations
did this year and the contribution they made to the cause.
If your organization has yet to make that financial
commitment, please consider contributing soon so we can
finish this year with a balanced budget. Our sole source of
income comes from you! VTC is a little short in meeting our
2017 financial goal. With just a little bit more effort, we
can meet our revenue needs and work to focus on the plans
for the next year. Our new Treasurer, Mike Bard, has put
together a special fund-raising committee to focus on
improving our efforts. If you have ideas on how VTC can
increase efforts and find new methods to raise funds, please
VTC is the only organization with two full-time, year round
lobbyists defending our reason for wanting to be Vermonters.
Whether you seek outdoor recreation or if working the land
is your livelihood, VTC is here to represent you. As we
expand, our support expands as well. Public land lease
holders, loggers and the forest products industry, trappers,
farmers, snowmobilers, hunters, landowners, lakeshore
owners, pet breeders and trainers, foresters, anglers and
more all have a place with VTC where we strive to succeed
together rather than fail separately!
VTC works to maintain and improve access to public lands,
defend gun owner rights and property rights, and stop “over
the top” regulations on pet owners, shooting ranges, trail
construction, logging, farming and so on. We defend and
promote Vermont’s fish hatcheries, fish stocking and lamprey
control. VTC not only aims to let us keep doing what we do,
but sounds off about the very important contribution we make
to Vermont’s economy and our rural way of life. Make it your
obligation to support VTC, and help us push back against the
wealthy environmental and animal rights extremists that are
working to undermine the Vermont we cherish.
is a summary of many of the issues we worked on in the 2017
Firearms owners protected: GunSenseVT, an anti 2nd
Amendment group partially financed by former NYC Mayor
Bloomberg, has for several years targeted Vermont as what
they thought was easy pickings, but we have so far proved
them wrong. Our Constitutional rights prevail, but are
perpetually threatened by the anti-gun lobby. THIS YEAR WAS
January, Chittenden County Senator Philip Baruth introduced
S.4, a bill requiring universal background checks intended
to close the so-called loopholes in the sale and transfer of
firearms. The Senator held a press conference in the
Statehouse, along with the usual suspects supporting any
VTC Firearms Policy Analyst, Bill Moore, spent considerable
time working on this legislation and providing excellent
leadership to the VT2A Coalition of pro-gun advocates. As a
result of these collective efforts and close work with key
legislators, the bill did not even have a hearing. Senate
Judiciary Committee Chair Dick Sears (D-Benn.) had no
appetite for this fight. Other gun rights leaders such as
Senator Joe Benning and Representative Pat Brennan helped
make sure that legislative priorities such as budget fights
and education tax policy eclipsed the gun control effort.
The House gun control bill, H.151, never left the House
Judiciary Committee. Both the House and Senate gun control
bills died due to lack of support and our due diligence in
providing committee members with the facts. Vermont is the
safest state in the union and another gun law will not make
bill, H.422, was introduced purporting to address domestic
violence in the home, but was actually disguised as another
gun regulation. This bill allowed a law enforcement officer
to take all weapons from the home when responding to a
domestic dispute. Originating in the House Judiciary
Committee, this bill did get onto the House Floor following
substantial and convoluted amendments by the committee. The
bill has crossed over to the Senate, but there was no action
on H.422 in the Senate Judiciary Committee. VTC’s Bill
Moore, again, with the members of the VT2A Coalition,
provided pressure and counsel to sympathetic senators. The
bill, so far, has little support in the Senate. However, the
anti’s have made it loud and clear that they will be back in
the strong help of VTC supporters, we can continue to
prevail with the approach we have consistently presented to
lawmakers and the support of the Scott administration;
“Vermont needs no new gun laws!” Remember to thank your
legislators who support this simple proposition and Governor
Phil Scott for their support for Vermonters’ gun rights.
When VTC asks the VTC Statewide Network for phone calls,
attendance at meetings or rallies, that’s where you play a
key role in demonstrating the depth and breadth of
Vermonters’ support for our traditional gun rights.
Berlin Pond: For more than five years, the Berlin Pond
issue continues to challenge recreational access and
traditional use of public waters. The Supreme Court ruled
that the City of Montpelier has no power to restrict uses on
a pond that is not completely enclosed by an owner’s land.
The state has the power, thru ANR rule making authority to
determine what uses are allowed and they determined that
non-motorized uses including fishing, trapping, hunting,
canoeing, kayaking and swimming do not pose a threat to the
water quality and are allowable uses on Berlin Pond.
City of Montpelier, many home owners around the pond and
Representative Warren Kitzmiller have fought for four
legislative sessions to eliminate any uses of the pond. VTC
worked to stop any advancement of their agenda, the latest
being a City Charter Change passed at the 2016 City of
Montpelier Town Meeting vote. Efforts of the proponents
intensified this year as Rep. Kitzmiller was appointed to
the House Committee on Government Operations, the committee
of jurisdiction for charter changes.
half day hearing with only four witnesses, the committee
decided that the charter change as proposed will not move
forward. Instead the committee chose to send a letter to the
city leaders, ANR officials and surrounding town leaders
asking them to meet and discuss options towards a
resolution. Admitting defeat, the Montpelier City Manager
and Public Works Director have worked hard in these meetings
to find concessions that allow for public uses while
protecting their drinking water supply.
concessions have been made! A big win for VTC and our
partner organizations. VTC member organization, the Friends
of Berlin Pond, whose leaders include Nate Smead and Mike
Covey, used Facebook as a great venue to share information.
Frank Stanley, VTC’s Lobbyist, orchestrated a sound strategy
that concluded with a record breaking flood of phone calls
and emails from our VTCers to members of the committee.
Aquatic invasive control is an ongoing concern,
especially for lake associations trying to keep their lake
or pond free of Eurasian Milfoil or other invasive plant and
animal species. VTC includes several lake associations as
members. The system designed by the state to allow lake
associations to control their lake was cumbersome and time
John Rogers of Essex/Orleans Counties District lives on
Shadow Lake and is involved with the Shadow Lake
Association. The Shadow Lake Association has been proactive
in controlling invasive species for many years. Senator
Rodgers introduced a bill, S.75, to streamline the permit
process to make it easier and faster to get a control
project going such as bottom barriers that can shade and
choke out milfoil.
wanted to improve the effectiveness for lake associations
that invest in boat washing stations and have a volunteer
access greeter program that meets boaters at the ramp in an
effort to educate them and work to keep these invasive
plants from entering the water.
component of this bill increased the enforcement provisions
for illegal transport of invasive species on a boat, trailer
or the hauling vehicle. Enforcing an ANR violation requires
a lengthy reporting process that discourages many law
enforcement officers from issuing a ticket.
bill streamlines the process for law enforcement to monitor
and enforce this regulation when someone is carelessly
transporting invasives. VTC monitored the work on this bill
through both the Senate and the House. The bill went through
a number of versions as it advanced, and at times seemed
very complicated. The major concern to anglers and boaters
and lake associations was the potential for conflict when a
boater encounters a greeter. Several conversations and
language attempts were proposed that attempted to allow a
volunteer access greeter to inspect a boat and trailer, but
there were concerns over greeter / boater conflict, creating
long lines at access areas, and greeter training to reduce
House language became an issue on the House floor and a
floor amendment was adopted to soften the role of the
greeter to reduce conflict and delays. Representatives Pat
Brennan and Bob Bancroft presented excellent questions, and
led the charge to find solutions to the potential problems.
In the end, the Legislature sent a bill to the Governor that
makes a modest improvement in invasive species control and
its transportation. It may take some time to find out if the
above concerns are valid and if problems do arise. Senator
Rodgers said he is committed to re-working the language.
Walleye fisheries are important to Vermont’s anglers and
for attracting visitors to our lake. The Lake Champlain
Walleye Association (LCWA), one of the VTC charter
members, continues to grow a stocking program that is having
a huge positive impact on the walleye population of Lake
Champlain and a couple of in land water bodies. Many years
ago, VTC helped establish a partnership between LCWA and the
Vermont Fish and Wildlife Department that has grown into a
nationally recognized success story.
year, the legislature has appropriated funds to assist the
LCWA in their efforts, and it is working! $25,000 has been
provided each year for the repair, maintenance and expansion
of stocking ponds. In 2017, LCWA and VTC once again were
able to get a Legislative appropriation of $25,000 for LCWA
for each of the next two years. LCWA President Bob Samson
and Vice President Cubby Smith provided excellent
presentations to both the House and Senate Institutions
Committees, demonstrating the effectiveness of the Fish &
Wildlife Department’s intensive culture fish stocking
program and the walleye rearing success of LCWA’s special
fish rearing ponds.
first time in years, the Senate Institutions Committee
actually made an attempt to raise the funds to $30,000,
recognizing the need for the association and the great
benefit to the state. However, the $30,000 figure was
returned to $25,000 through the reconciliation conference
process. Senator Peg Flory, Chair of the Senate Institutions
Committee, along with the other members of the committee
Senators Mazza, Branagan, Rodgers and Brooks have been
strong supporters of this private public/partnership, and
have worked very hard in lean times to ensure the successful
Shelters and Animal Abuse are once again front burner
issues in the Vermont Legislature. The recent, intentional
killing of a neighborhood pet horse in Barre generated a
legislative reaction to increase penalties for animal abuse.
Dubbed the “Bunny Bill” named after the horse, the Senate
greatly increased the penalties in Senate Bill, S.12
intended to discourage more violations. VTC did not oppose
these penalty increases for egregious cases such as this.
and a key VTC member, the Vermont Federation of Dog Clubs,
pet shelter standards has been a difficult issue to define
and regulate. The battle lines were well defined in past
years. VTC and the Federation opposed the proposed
over-reaching language brought forward by the wealthy animal
rights and anti-hunting organization, the Humane Society of
the United States (HSUS).
VTC, the Dog Clubs Federation, and concerned legislators
defeated several pieces of extremist legislation, the House
Committee on Agriculture and Forestry asked all interested
parties to sit at the table and work out our differences.
This year, all sides saw the logic in adopting minimum
standards for the housing of cats and dogs. Once a complaint
is made, the minimum standard is intended to give a law
enforcement officer a basis to measure shelters to determine
compliance. HSUS and the Federation of Dog Clubs both agreed
that the standards were reasonable, measurable and
enforceable. Therefore, both sides came together to support
the legislation, and it has now become law. H.218,
introduced by Rep. John Barthalomew of Hartland, was the
bill that moved through the process.
along the way, controversies swirled around this legislation
to find the right balance between protecting against animal
abuse, but protecting pet ownership, private property
rights, and ensuring animal rights organizations didn’t get
enforcement authority. Veteran VTC lobbyist, Frank Stanley,
led the coalition thru this challenge with great expertise.
The leadership of the Federation of Dog Clubs worked very
hard, and was in the action every step of the way.
Permanent Hunting and Fishing License: Starting January
1, 2017 a Vermont citizen could no longer apply for a $50
Permanent hunting/fishing license once becoming sixty-five
years old, but would need to wait until the age of seventy
when it would be free. The Dept. of Fish and Wildlife was
looking to increase revenues from our aging sporting
community, but did not realize the push back it would
receive once the new law took effect.
Champion Lands Leaseholders & Traditional Interests
Association Director and VTC activist, Bert Saldi, decided
to voice his concerns and get the age for qualifying for a
free Senior Citizen Hunting-Fishing License back to age
sixty-five. He stood in front of the statehouse last
December with a sign and protested the change, garnering
much attention from state officials.
Wildlife Department Commissioner Louis Porter realized that
his department could have done a better job informing the
sporting community, and worked to find a solution to the
issue. Unfortunately, because the new policy was already in
place and folks that turned sixty five already had to buy a
regular license, the Commissioner asked the Legislature to
reduce the age for qualifying for a free hunting-fishing
license to age sixty-six.
one-time fee to qualify for a free Senior Citizen
Hunting-Fishing license was raised from $50 to $60 to help
backfill lost revenue. All agreed to this compromise. Bert
Saldi spent considerable time at the State House playing a
key role for VTC. This is an example of how VTC’s statewide
network of volunteers make contributions that make VTC
stronger and more effective.
Products Industry Fares Well
Future still Uncertain
of the more business friendly sessions according to the
Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Governor Scott’s pledge for no
tax or fee increases prevailed. There are a couple items
benefitting the Vermont Forest Products Industry. Two
economic development bills, H.495 and S.34, were passed by
the legislature. Governor Scott signed them into law in the
presence of dozens of forest sector leaders, advocates and
business owners surrounded by cedar logs and lumber at the
Goodridge Lumber Co. sawmill and lumber yard in Albany.
Ed Larson was selected by Governor Phil Scott’s
administration to be one of the featured speakers. The
provisions listed below, are modest, but positive
legislative actions that will provide some cost relief to
the forest products industry, especially loggers. Included
in unfinished business, the Legislature has again failed to
create a single definition of an independent contractor for
both workers’ compensation and unemployment insurance.
Improving independent contractor laws is important to those
who work the land as well as many other occupations.
Vermont Forest Products Association (VFPA) is a charter
member of VTC as is the Vermont Farm Bureau. Legislation
that benefits these working landscape industries benefits
VTC recreational organizations, because a more favorable
working landscape business climate means less open
landowners who allow recreationists to use their land are
forced to sell their land for development because working
the land is not profitable.
a rundown of the positive legislation that benefits the
forest products industry:
• Elimination of the sales tax for specific logging
equipment, including big ticket items such as skidders, and
repair parts. Vermont is the last state in the region to
eliminate this tax!
• Off road fuel tax. A little-known snafu in tax law causes
confusion for tax audits. Tax department allows the user of
off road (dyed diesel) fuel to be tax exempt when the
equipment is in motion known as the propelled exemption. If
equipment is idle or not moving, that fuel used is taxable.
No one tracks time of propelling vs idling so when a tax
audit comes around, the entire use of fuel becomes taxable.
This is an ugly surprise for the working landscape business
that is being audited. H.495 contains a proposal that
clarifies that the use of dyed diesel fuel for most all off
road uses is 100% tax exempt.
• H.495 also includes a cost share program for the purchase
of skidder bridges. Senator Bobby Starr (Essex/ Orleans),
Chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, felt that the
revised Acceptable Management Practices for Logging
Operations (AMP) requirements to increase the use of skidder
bridges to protect water quality may be a good thing, but it
is an unfunded mandate. On that basis, legislation was
passed requiring the state to pay 90% of the cost of the
skidder bridges. $50,000 was allocated from the Agricultural
portion of the Clean Water Fund for the state to purchase as
many bridges as possible and distribute them around the
state available for purchase by loggers at 10% of the cost.
The legislation also added spill kits in to this cost share
program to encourage all skidder and equipment operators to
keep one available on their job sites. The current skidder
bridge rental program remains in place unchanged.
included a directive to the Commissioner of Financial
Regulation to work with the Secretary of Agriculture and
Commissioner of Forest, Parks and Recreation to explore
worker’s compensation issues including combining high risk
job classifications into a larger pool in an effort to find
lower premium costs. This will be taken up next year if
meaningful recommendations are found. High worker
compensation rates for logging companies is a big problem
for the forest products industry.
Steve Hardy, President of VFPA, recognizes the good work of
the general assembly, “This is a positive message to the
industry. These modest changes are more than just token.
This is a good first step towards addressing our industry
challenges to compete in a global economy. This is a sign
that our legislators are listening and we hope to continue
on this trajectory and tackle more meaningful and complex
issues next year.” VFPA and VTC hope to address the job
killing workers' compensation costs, increase truck weights
and achieve regulatory relief to encourage investment in
value added businesses in Vermont.
members of the Senate Agriculture and House Agriculture and
Forestry committees have been very supportive and worked
hard to get these changes through the process. Vermont
Governor Scott put together a solid team to serve the forest
products industry. His reappointment of Commissioner Mike
Snyder and the newly created Deputy Commissioner position to
which he appointed Sam Lincoln of Randolph, a well-known and
respected logging contractor truly enhanced our opportunity
to educate lawmakers and make these things happen.
Fragmentation Regulation passes House, Motorized Recreation
poorly designed regulatory bill came to life near the last
few weeks of the session. H.233 passed the house on a
vote of 85-61. This bill adds new criteria to Act 250 that,
in many cases, will ban fragmentation of the forest or
wildlife passage ways. VTC and VFPA testified in strong
opposition to the bill. The primary reason is that this
proposal will not work to limit fragmentation due to
development or other activities. This measure if passed will
only reduce the value or equity of property and antagonize
landowners. A couple amendments were added before the final
• Rep. Gary Nolan’s successful amendment removes
recreational trails from being considered as fragmentation
of forested areas. Without this amendment, new trails or
trail re-routes would have been banned in these areas. This
amendment is crucial to all trail organizations! VTC’s
member organizations include many local and county
snowmobile clubs plus VTC often partners with the Vermont
ATV Sportsman’s Association (VASA) in their effort to
establish a meaningful ATV trail system in Vermont.
• The second amendment was proposed by Rep. Brian Keefe of
Manchester. His amendment adds language to make it clear
that not every Act 250 application will need this review
unless it enters one of these forest blocks. This portion
was accepted. Keefe also proposed to include the same
language for habitat connectors, and that these habitat
connectors must be inside the forest block. That failed
because the proponents of this regulation said habitat
connectors are not necessarily inside forest blocks but are
located in such a way to connect forest blocks and are in
many other places such as along streams and rivers.
H.233 is now sent to the Senate to be considered next year.
Many VFPA members and Directors provided testimony and took
the time to contact their Representatives. VFPA President,
Steve Hardy, Director Bill Sayre and Robbo Holleran provided
excellent testimony. We also had calls into Representatives
from the Vermont Traditions Coalition (VTC) organization
members and our friends from the Federation of Sportsmen’s
Clubs, the Vermont ATV Sportsmen’s Association and the
Vermont Association of Snow Travelers.
Other Snowmobile and ATV Legislative Matters
addition to the effort to restrict motorized recreation in
so called Forest Blocks, there were a number of other bills
that came onto the watch list mostly housed in the
transportation and government operations committees.
H.287 –This legislation was introduced by Rep. Ron Hubert of
Milton, whose grandson was seriously injured by a cable that
appeared across a road that he regularly traveled. The bill
requires a landowner to hang flagging or reflectors from a
cable, rope, chain, pipe or other temporary barrier across a
private road that the landowner knows or should know is used
for vehicle traffic by the public. Vehicles are defined to
include ATV, snowmobile, bicycle or watercraft.
Landowner groups and recreational interests oppose this
bill, because it appears to expose land owners to a whole
new category of law suits. Representative Nolan, also the
Treasurer of VASA, paid particular attention to this bill.
Landowner and recreation groups expressed serious concerns
about the unintended consequences of landowners choosing to
post their land to exclude all lawful uses of the public.
Larson testified on behalf of the Vermont Traditions
Coalition. In response to strong testimony from VTC, VAST
Vermont Farm Bureau and other groups House Transportation
Committee Chairman, Pat Brennan, presented a new draft that
directs state agencies to develop a brochure to distribute
to landowners describing the dangers of cables, chains and
wire that are not easily visible to travelers on vehicles.
a big win for maintaining current landowner liability
protections. Chairman Brennan deserves praise for the work
he did to find a solution based on education rather than
regulation. Representative Hubert also needs to be
recognized for trying to find a way to prevent injuries like
those suffered by his grandson, while, at the same time,
avoiding increased landowner liability and removing an
increased reason for landowners to post their land.
Authorizing municipalities to prohibit through traffic by
heavy vehicles. This proposed bill gives municipalities the
authority to prohibit large trucks and trailers from using a
class 3 or 4 town road to shortcut through an area. The
exception is for local stops. VTC has reached agreement with
the bill sponsor, Representative Peter Fagan of Rutland, to
create language that allows trail groups to use these roads
to transport heavy trail building and maintenance equipment.
miscellaneous transportation bill, S.127 passed the Senate
and is working its way through the House. The bill has
several technical and housekeeping changes to a number of
Department of Motor Vehicle laws. Section 17 deals with the
transfer of registration to a surviving spouse of vessels,
snowmobiles and ATVs. It allows the registration to be
transferred upon request to a surviving spouse without any
fees. It also creates a default in that if there is no
specific request in a will or trust, these vehicles will
automatically transfer to a surviving spouse.
purpose of VTC is to counter the Anti movement. The
anti-hunting, fishing, trapping, farming, meat eating,
logging and just about everything else we do movement has
become aggressive in Vermont. Protect Our Wildlife (POW) is
an organized anti-hunting/ trapping group and is using
misinformation, propaganda, and a false narrative to grow
their constituency and raise funds.
February 2015, the Green Mountain Animal Defenders (GMAD)
volunteer coordinator branched out and created POW. She has
since helped organize the Vermont Coyote Coexistence
Coalition and Vermont Wildlife Coalition. She actively
supports the GunSense Vermont gun control organization, and
is one of two HSUS regional coordinators in Vermont. These
folks, although extremist and poorly informed, are
aggressive and insistent. Employing tactics which are
parallel to those we've seen from GunSense Vermont on gun
control, they are propaganda based. Although they claim to
simply want a "seat at the table", they are well known for
doing all in their power to silence knowledgeable opposition
to their positions.
Priority goals of the anti-hunting, POW crowd, include
stopping the open hunting season for coyotes and crows, a
total ban on lead ammunition, adding anti-hunters to the
Fish and Wildlife Board, closing or reducing training
seasons for hunting dogs and outright banning trapping.
Their leadership has also been involved with the GMAD "Walk
for Farmed Animals", billed as "a funeral procession for the
billions of animals suffering in the farming industry."
extremists chose trapping as their first target, and have
been building from there. However, VTC has vowed to throw
the entire weight of our organization in their path and to
keep the pedal on the gas as long as necessary. VTC has been
a front-line defense for our traditions, and trapping is one
of the oldest forms of land use in our state. Trapping
provides tangible benefits for farmers, foresters,
landowners, homeowners, municipalities, and snow machine/ATV
trail maintenance coordinators. VTC will continue to work
with our member organization, the Vermont Trappers
Association, and our entire statewide network in defense of
trapping and all the other hallowed Vermont traditions that
these extremists are attacking.
VTC meetings, time is spent sharing information about what
we know about POW activities and strategizing how to counter
them. Fortunately, the facts and science support the current
approach of responsible, sustainable use of our wild
resources. Working with the strong and growing network of
VTC and the strength of our resolve, we will continue to
expose the antis, defend our rural traditions, and promote
responsible natural resource management.
for your support!
you seek outdoor recreation or if working the land is your
livelihood, VTC is here to represent you. We strive to
succeed together rather than fail separately!
Ed Larson, Executive Director
Vermont Traditions Coalition
Frank Stanley, Lobbyist
P. O. Box 622
Hinesburg, Vt. 05461
President – Nate Smead, Berlin
Vice-President – Bruce Jean, Essex
Treasurer – Mike Bard, Waterbury
Secretary – Dennis Fournier, Barre
Contributing VTC Delegates:
Bill Moore, Mike Covey, Steve McLeod, Nate Smead