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Author Topic: Northeast Assembly Thread  (Read 329594 times)
Trends are real, and I f**king hate it
Antonio V
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« Reply #875 on: December 07, 2009, 06:56:23 am »

Aye
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Barnes
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« Reply #876 on: December 07, 2009, 08:41:02 pm »

The Ayes are three, the Nays are two, with one abstention. The Ayes have it.

I hereby present this Bill to the Governor for his signature or veto.
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Small Business Owner of Any Repute
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« Reply #877 on: December 08, 2009, 11:54:13 am »
« Edited: December 08, 2009, 11:59:11 am by Mr. Moderate »

Yikes.  Sorry folks, been really busy lately (and there's been a work crackdown on Internets.)

Anyway, Aye for the record.  I'm very glad to see this bill got passed—I believe it will do a lot of good to reassure mortgage lenders, homeowners, and the housing market in general by protecting those who face the loss of their home because of the economy, and not because of the kind of greed that caused this mess.
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Trends are real, and I f**king hate it
Antonio V
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« Reply #878 on: December 08, 2009, 12:32:45 pm »

Next bill ?
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #879 on: December 08, 2009, 02:11:58 pm »


Sustainable Forestry Act

Section A: Purpose

1. The Northeast region is home to over 40 million acres of hardwood and softwood forests used for construction, manufacturing, energy, and other uses. The Northeast region recognizes that sustainable forestry is necessary to create a healthy and diverse environment and create a lasting industry that continues to provide jobs to Northeasterners. The Northeast recognizes that current forestry practices are unsustainable and that a more reasonable replacement level must be mandated.

Section B: Regulations

1. Forestry (the act of clearing or eliminating trees for commercial purposes) shall be regulated by the region to provide sustainability.

2. The acreage of forestry shall not be allowed below 35 million acres at any given point in time.

3. Forestry on public or private lands by any organization that has not obtained a permit from the Northeast region is hereby prohibited.

4. Any company or organization removing trees for commercial use is REQUIRED to replace the acreage of trees removed at a 1:1 ratio. Companies and/or organizations are REQUIRED to ensure survivability of the new growth.

5. A 5% tax credit is available to any company/organization that prove compliant with the above regulations and publicly commit to sustainable forestry and the preservation of Northeastern biodiversity.

Section C: Non-compliance


1. Any company/organization found violating the terms of this act shall be subject to a fine of no less than twice the amount of estimated damage caused to the region's hardwood and/or softwood forests.
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Trends are real, and I f**king hate it
Antonio V
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« Reply #880 on: December 08, 2009, 03:10:15 pm »

You haven't the authority to do that.
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #881 on: December 08, 2009, 03:14:23 pm »
« Edited: December 08, 2009, 05:00:39 pm by Alexander Hamilton »

Stop being such a damn jerk all the time, you worthless hack. I`m letting people read the bill here so they don`t have to wait for Barnes to know what is next. You did the same thing once, except that bill you posted wasn`t even the one we were supposed to debate.
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Barnes
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« Reply #882 on: December 08, 2009, 05:56:16 pm »


Sustainable Forestry Act

Section A: Purpose

1. The Northeast region is home to over 40 million acres of hardwood and softwood forests used for construction, manufacturing, energy, and other uses. The Northeast region recognizes that sustainable forestry is necessary to create a healthy and diverse environment and create a lasting industry that continues to provide jobs to Northeasterners. The Northeast recognizes that current forestry practices are unsustainable and that a more reasonable replacement level must be mandated.

Section B: Regulations

1. Forestry (the act of clearing or eliminating trees for commercial purposes) shall be regulated by the region to provide sustainability.

2. The acreage of forestry shall not be allowed below 35 million acres at any given point in time.

3. Forestry on public or private lands by any organization that has not obtained a permit from the Northeast region is hereby prohibited.

4. Any company or organization removing trees for commercial use is REQUIRED to replace the acreage of trees removed at a 1:1 ratio. Companies and/or organizations are REQUIRED to ensure survivability of the new growth.

5. A 5% tax credit is available to any company/organization that prove compliant with the above regulations and publicly commit to sustainable forestry and the preservation of Northeastern biodiversity.

Section C: Non-compliance

1. Any company/organization found violating the terms of this act shall be subject to a fine of no less than twice the amount of estimated damage caused to the region's hardwood and/or softwood forests.

Sponsor: Rep. Hamilton

The Questions is, shall the Bill be Considered? The Ayes have it.

The Sponsor, Representative Hamilton, has the floor.
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #883 on: December 08, 2009, 05:59:58 pm »

The bill is straight forward, we need to protect our natural environment here in the Northeast. I don't really have much to comment on this, but I would like to let the hardcore capitalists know that this is a pro-business bill. If we are going to remain productive, natural resources must be managed at sustainable levels. If we eliminate our forests at the current rate without adequate replenishment, pretty soon we will be a treeless region. How will we capitalize then? The Northeast would lose jobs... We would lose natives species... We would lose our beautiful natural landscape... Is it worth it? If we implement sustainable policies, we will be able to make use of what nature has given us for as long as we dedicate ourselves to responsible policies.
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« Reply #884 on: December 08, 2009, 07:28:02 pm »

Support this, but Section C should be clarified to define "estimated damage" - perhaps the percentage of additional land cleared and not replenished should be factored into the profits made and that would be the cost of the fine. For example, if the company cleared a total of 100 hectares and only replenished 95 hectares, and earned in that time a total profit of $5 million, the fine would work out at double 5% of the total profits of $5,000,000, which would be $500,000 worth of fines. Perhaps also setting a minimum "per hectare" value of a fine, to prevent companies using creative accounting to post a loss in years in which they over-clear.
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Dr. Cynic
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« Reply #885 on: December 08, 2009, 08:15:58 pm »

Support this, but Section C should be clarified to define "estimated damage" - perhaps the percentage of additional land cleared and not replenished should be factored into the profits made and that would be the cost of the fine. For example, if the company cleared a total of 100 hectares and only replenished 95 hectares, and earned in that time a total profit of $5 million, the fine would work out at double 5% of the total profits of $5,000,000, which would be $500,000 worth of fines. Perhaps also setting a minimum "per hectare" value of a fine, to prevent companies using creative accounting to post a loss in years in which they over-clear.

That'd be something worth adding. At least it wouldn't make things so open to cheating.
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #886 on: December 08, 2009, 08:20:16 pm »

What would suffice as a minimum fine per hectare?
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Dr. Cynic
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« Reply #887 on: December 08, 2009, 08:23:59 pm »

What would suffice as a minimum fine per hectare?

Should depend on the size of the business... Say for small businesses 500 dollars, and on up..
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cinyc
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« Reply #888 on: December 08, 2009, 09:34:46 pm »

The bill is straight forward, we need to protect our natural environment here in the Northeast. I don't really have much to comment on this, but I would like to let the hardcore capitalists know that this is a pro-business bill. If we are going to remain productive, natural resources must be managed at sustainable levels. If we eliminate our forests at the current rate without adequate replenishment, pretty soon we will be a treeless region. How will we capitalize then? The Northeast would lose jobs... We would lose natives species... We would lose our beautiful natural landscape... Is it worth it? If we implement sustainable policies, we will be able to make use of what nature has given us for as long as we dedicate ourselves to responsible policies.

I rise in opposition to this bill, especially with respect to restrictions placed on private land.

It is often said that the Northeast has more trees today than we have ever had before.  While that's likely true, it is of no doubt that the Northeast has more trees today than we had at the beginning of the last century.  This is despite the fact that much of our forests are privately owned, unlike out west.

Or is it BECAUSE of that fact?  Private tree farmers who own the land have every incentive to treat their trees with the utmost of respect.  Overcutting today will directly lead to lower expected profits tomorrow - and a declining company value.

I simply don't know why we need heavy handed regulation of something that's working.  There is no danger of the Northeast becoming a treeless region.  It hasn't been heading in that direction for 100 years.
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Dr. Cynic
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« Reply #889 on: December 08, 2009, 09:44:51 pm »

I simply don't know why we need heavy handed regulation of something that's working.  There is no danger of the Northeast becoming a treeless region.  It hasn't been heading in that direction for 100 years.

In rural western PA there is a great deal of strip mining and heavy handed lumbering going on. Such as some places are looking completely bare. There's no reason to believe a trend like that would not continue.
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #890 on: December 08, 2009, 09:49:36 pm »

cinyc, do you have statistics to back those claims up? Pardon if I come across as rude, but I did a lot of research about forestry in New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire to come up with the minimum amount of acreage required so I've seen quite a bit of information on the subject. I'm just wondering what your sources might be.
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cinyc
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« Reply #891 on: December 08, 2009, 10:30:27 pm »
« Edited: December 08, 2009, 10:40:22 pm by cinyc »

Yup.

New York: http://www.dec.ny.gov/lands/42065.html
Northeast: http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1016/is_n5-6_v97/ai_10737450/?tag=content;col1
Hardwood trees, generally, which are the type that mainly grows in the NE: http://www.hardwoodinfo.com/articles/view/135
General, US: http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/bot00/bot00090.htm
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #892 on: December 08, 2009, 10:42:53 pm »

In that case, I might be able to drop the restrictions on private lands. Let me know what you guys think.
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cinyc
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« Reply #893 on: December 08, 2009, 11:18:56 pm »
« Edited: December 08, 2009, 11:21:55 pm by cinyc »

In rural western PA there is a great deal of strip mining and heavy handed lumbering going on. Such as some places are looking completely bare. There's no reason to believe a trend like that would not continue.

According to Pennsylvania Department of Conservation’s Natural Resources, there was no significant net change in PA forest acreage from 1989 to 2004.  663,000 acres were lost, but 617,500 acres were gained.  That's a net loss of 45,500 acres over 15 years - about 3000 acres a year - which is hardly significant when combined with reported gains in the rest of the Northeast or the significant increases earlier in the 20th century.  

The losses was largely due to residential and industrial development, not strip mining or tree farming.  The majority of the gains came from reclaimed agricultural lands.
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Smid
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« Reply #894 on: December 08, 2009, 11:54:29 pm »

The Bill should only relate to forestry on public land. I think the regulation of the clearing of public forest is fine, after all it is a Regional asset and the Regional government should be able to regulate that, however the regulation of private forestry is unnecessary.

Indeed, as the Bill currently reads, the definition of forestry ("the clearing or elimination of trees for commercial purposes") could possibly result in a person who chops down a tree in their backyard and then sells it for firewood being fined (perhaps the plural may mean they'd only be prosecuted in the case of two or more trees, but regardless, the definition needs to be tightened and I think should only include forestry on public land).
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #895 on: December 08, 2009, 11:57:23 pm »

Okay, I'm amending this to strike "or private" from the language of clause 3
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Dr. Cynic
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« Reply #896 on: December 09, 2009, 12:11:15 am »

In rural western PA there is a great deal of strip mining and heavy handed lumbering going on. Such as some places are looking completely bare. There's no reason to believe a trend like that would not continue.

According to Pennsylvania Department of Conservation’s Natural Resources, there was no significant net change in PA forest acreage from 1989 to 2004.  663,000 acres were lost, but 617,500 acres were gained.  That's a net loss of 45,500 acres over 15 years - about 3000 acres a year - which is hardly significant when combined with reported gains in the rest of the Northeast or the significant increases earlier in the 20th century.  

The losses was largely due to residential and industrial development, not strip mining or tree farming.  The majority of the gains came from reclaimed agricultural lands.

Really? Cause that's all you see around here...
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #897 on: December 09, 2009, 12:15:26 am »

I'll add a Section D, as well

Section D: Public Land Use

1. The Northeast region will no longer be allowed to sell wooded land to private owners.
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cinyc
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« Reply #898 on: December 09, 2009, 12:16:04 am »

That's not going to be sufficient.  Additional changes will have to be made to the bill because the Northeast isn't regulating of private lands.  For example (subject to whatever changes are made to Section C):

Sustainable Forestry Act

Section A: Purpose

1. The Northeast region is home to over 40 million acres of hardwood and softwood forests used for construction, manufacturing, energy, and other uses. The Northeast region recognizes that sustainable forestry is necessary to create a healthy and diverse environment and create a lasting industry that continues to provide jobs to Northeasterners. The Northeast recognizes that current forestry practices are unsustainable and that a more reasonable replacement level must be mandated.

Section B: Regulations

1. Forestry (the act of clearing or eliminating more than 10 trees for commercial purposes) on Northeast public lands shall be regulated by the region to provide sustainability.

2. The acreage of forestry shall not be allowed below 35 million acres at any given point in time.  (Note: I don't know why we need this when we determine how much forestland we own and the uses thereof)

2.3. Forestry on Northeast public or private lands by any company or organization that has not obtained a permit from the Northeast region is hereby prohibited.

34. Any company or organization removing more than 10 trees from Northeast public land in any calendar year for commercial use is REQUIRED to replace the acreage of trees removed at a 1:1 ratio. Companies and/or organizations are REQUIRED to ensure survivability of the new growth.  [Question: Forever?  Or some set period]

5. A 5% tax credit is available to any company/organization that prove compliant with the above regulations and publicly commit to sustainable forestry and the preservation of Northeastern biodiversity. (Note: I don't know why we'd need to give a credit to companies we're letting cut on public land)

4.  Nothing in this Act shall prohibit individuals from cutting up to 10 trees per year for firewood or other personal use on parcels of Northeast public land where such activity is expressly permitted by the laws or regulations of the Northeast.
 
Section C: Non-compliance

1. Any company/organization found violating the terms of this act shall be subject to a fine of no less than twice the amount of estimated damage caused to the region's hardwood and/or softwood forests.
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Alexander Hamilton
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« Reply #899 on: December 09, 2009, 12:19:56 am »

I can accept that, but I still wish to see my Section D added.
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