TISHA WILKINSON: Merv Wilkinson ‘surely wouldn’t have supported The Land Conservancy in its decision to change their definition of ecoforestry’

Broken promises?


MERV WILKINSON IN WINTER OF 93 -94:
Andy Sinats photo from ecobc.org 

TLC not fulfilling pledges after buying Wildwood ecoforestry site

 
BY TISHA WILKINSON
SPECIAL TO TIMES COLONIST SEPTEMBER 24, 2010

Has The Land Conservancy of British Columbia lived up to its ethical and moral responsibility with regard to the Wildwood ecoforestry site?

On Aug. 26, TLC posted a commentary on its website titled Facts about TLC’s Wildwood Ecoforestry Site.

This was in response to the mounting pressure being applied by Merv Wilkinson and his supporters (including family) with regard to the failure to continue his sustainable selection forestry activities and the lack of maintenance and protection of the property.

TLC stated: “When we take a property under our care, we do have the ethical and moral responsibility to protect that property in perpetuity, to not expose it to undue risk and to manage it to the best of our abilities according to the expectations of our partners, members and donors.”

To protect Wildwood in perpetuity, TLC says that once it holds title, the property will be deemed inalienable and can never be sold. The property and its uses will be protected by the TLC constitution.

Yet, the TLC constitution states that “when a property … is declared to be inalienable, the society will take every measure possible to ensure its protection in perpetuity. A property that has been declared inalienable shall be protected by a Conservation Covenant …[and] shall not be mortgaged under any circumstances.”

Given what we know today about TLC operations and knowing there are a number of mortgages on Wildwood, it is clear the property is not inalienable and is not protected.

Given the latest information on TLC’s financial situation, mortgaging practices and the resulting lack of real protection to the property, it has exposed Wildwood to undue risk.

TLC also stated that it has the ethical and moral responsibility to manage Wildwood to the best of its abilities according to the expectations of its partners, members and donors.

Given that Merv Wilkinson was a major donor, a TLC member and the owner of the property, his expectations were well known to TLC.

The draft stewardship plan that was presented to him 10 years ago stated that TLC would manage Wildwood according to Merv’s ecoforestry principles.

A letter signed by Bill Turner, TLC executive director, to Merv Wilkinson on Sept. 6, 2000, when he was negotiating the purchase of Wildwood, said that TLC “would set out to … raise several hundred thousand dollars for the property’s future maintenance.”

The letter also stated that Merv Wilkinson “would be involved in any management decisions relating to the property for as long as you live.”

From this, Merv Wilkinson expected that his property would be maintained and that he would be involved in the management decisions relating to the property.

TLC has not followed through with this agreement.

Merv is still alive and he has not been involved in the management decisions relating to the property.

Had he been, he surely wouldn’t have supported TLC in its decision to change their definition of ecoforestry.

The conclusion is apparent: TLC has not lived up to its responsibilities with regard to Wildwood.

 

Tisha Wilkinson is a daughter of Merv Wilkinson.

CCC BLOG PUBLIC INTEREST REPRINT:
The Victoria Times Colonist: timescolonist.com
Friday, September, 24, 2010
CCC

MERV WILKINSON IN HIS WILDWOOD HOMESTEAD
WITH FELLOW ECO FORESTER TERRY GORDON
CCC TRANSCULTURAL CONSERVATION PROPAGANDA 2010
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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