By Andru McCracken
The McBride Community Forest Corporation (MCFC) will soon reach an important milestone: the end of a five year cut control period. It’s been a turbulent five years, but things are looking up.
Joseph Rich, Chair of MCFC said that the community forest is doing not bad.
“We’re just closing off our five year cut control period and managing to stay out of any kind of overcut penalty.
We will be able to start up in January with a fresh cut control period in front of us,” said Rich.
MCFC’s board of directors set aside some time to answer questions from the Rocky Mountain Goat about board operations prior to their last board meeting on Wednesday afternoon.
Rich said how much wood will be available in the next cut control period is unknown.
“We won’t know that number until the inventory process is complete,” he said.
Rich said the community forest will hire a consultant to use the information gained from LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) and groundwork to determine how much wood they can cut over the next five year cut control period.
He says he’s happy they’ve reached the end of their cut control period.
“We’ve achieved a pretty admirable thing in the last five years. We’ve worked hard at it. We had to be very diligent and keep our nose to the grindstone to make it happen,” said Rich.
Rich said the challenge was to log profitably enough to keep the community forest afloat financially, while staying within cut control constraints,and providing enough wood to keep local mills running.
A spokesperson with the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development said the Prince George Natural
Resource District is working with McBride Community Forest to allow them to fully utilize their Annual Allowable Cut.
The community forest has not been paying dividends to the village.
“We haven’t made any dividend returns to the village in several years, but we have made contributions to the community locally,” Rich said.