At the February KWOA & KWOF board meetings, the directors agreed to establish the Pete Kovalic Forest Leadership Program Scholarship (Youth Program) through the Kentucky Woodland Owners Foundation KWOF. Long-time friend and supporter of KWOA, Pete Kovalic, has passed at the age of 93 after living a full and meaningful life. Go to our News Page at https://www.kwoa.net/news/peter-p-kovalic-in-memory to learn more about his life and all the ways he contributed to sustainable forestry, get a link to the full obituary. The family has also generously included KWOA for memorial donations. Memorial donations to KWOA/KWOF will be dedicated to the Pete Kovalic Forest Leadership Program Scholarship (Youth Program)
Legislative Items of INterest
KCC List of Senate Bills to date can be found here
To contact your lawmaker on any of these bills, use the Legislative Message Line at 1-800-372-7181 from 7AM-9PM M-TH and 7AM-6PM Fridays. You may also email your lawmakers anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org
Update HJR 41 - Progressing
KWOA is pleased to report that discussions are progressing with Department of Revenue and the University of Kentucky's Department of Forestry and Natural Resources to work out procedural details . HJR 41 is A JOINT RESOLUTION directing the Department of Revenue and the University of Kentucky's Department of Forestry and Natural Resources to recommend equitable property tax assessment procedures for well-managed forests. KWOA Director, Jim Corum, has taken the initiative to work on this issue for many years and KWOA has been very supportive. You can read the resolution at https://apps.legislature.ky.gov/record/22rs/hjr41.html.
Recent Changes NRCS State office
NRCS State Office personnel changes:
Peter P. Kovalic - In Memory
Long time friend and supporter of KWOA, Pete Kovalic, has passed at the age of 93 after living a full and meaningful life. Pete was a veteran of the Korean War, a passionate forester and a man of unwavering patriotism. Anyone who knew him in life could see his deep respect for nature and immeasurable kindness. He dedicated himself to a career in forestry, working for the U.S. Forest Service and later as a consulting forester for more than 60 years. His devotion to trees and nature did not stop there. Pete founded Kovalics’ Christmas Tree Farm has kept it in the family for 34 years.
At Danial Boone National Forest, Pete worked as a silviculturist, specializing in timber sales, black walnut and fine hardwood management, and timber appraisals. Pete was also an instructor in the Department of Forestry at the University of Kentucky. He taught Harvesting Timber Crops part-time from 1982-1989. After retiring from the U.S. Forest Service, he became a consulting forester and continued timber appraisal and timber sales until the age of 89 throughout the state of Kentucky. Pete was a member of Society of American Foresters, Association of Consulting Foresters, Kentucky Association of Consulting Foresters, Kentucky Forest Industries Association, Walnut Council, Kentucky Woodland Owners Association, Kentucky Christmas Tree Association, Mid America Christmas Tree Association and the National Christmas Tree Association where he shared his knowledge of forestry, teaching courses, presenting, lecturing, and instructing. Here is a link to the full obituary with information on visitation and services:
Memorial contributions may be made to First Presbyterian Church, 130 Windridge Drive, Winchester, Kentucky 40391 or to the Kentucky Woodland Owners Association KWOA PO Box 1201 Frankfort, KY 40602. You can donate to Kentucky Woodland Owners Association KWOA or Kentucky Woodland Owner Foundation KWOF using the donate tab at the top of the page. Please use the comments section to designate your contribution "In honor of Pete Kovalic."
Ohio Outlaws Callery Pear Tree
Ohio is the first of several states taking steps to eradicate the once-popular ornamental Callery pear tree, known for their white spring blossoms.
Ohio outlaws ubiquitous pear trees
S.217 The Disaster Reforestation Act
On February 1, Senator Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and Senator Raphael Warnock (D-GA) introduced S. 217, the Disaster Reforestation Act. This bill would amend the tax code to give private forest landowners the tools they need to recover from natural disasters. This bill has now been introduced in both the House and the Senate. See full news release from the Forest Landowners Association at https://www.forestlandowners.com/senators-cassidy-and-warnock-prioritize-forest-landowners-bill/
Disaster Reforestation Act H.R. 655
Disaster Reforestation Act (DRA) H.R. 655 is bipartisan [Carter, R-Ga & Sewel D-AL] legislation introduced January 31, 2023 designed to allow private landowners to recover from the loss of timber destroyed by natural disasters. H.R. 655 was referred to House Ways and Means Committee. Similar legislation is expected in the Senate soon. Here's a link to Forest Landowners Association newsletter for more specifics: www.forestlandowners.com/house-tax-bill-introduced-to-help-forest-landowners-recover/
Woodland Owner Tax Tips
If you are a woodland owner do you understand how U.S. tax laws impact you? If not, make sure to check out the “Tax Tips for Forest Landowners: 2022 Tax Year”. This annual publication is produced by the Forest Service in partnership with the University of Georgia and University of Florida. Do you classify your woodland as: personal use/hobby, investment, or business? This choice influences which tax deductions you have available to you. In addition to the 2022 Tax Tips for Forest Landowner make sure to visit the national Timber Tax website at https://www.timbertax.org/ to learn more about the treatment of timber from a tax perspective.