DNR now accepting Community Forest Trust nominations

OLYMPIA – The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is now considering nominations for lands to be included in the state Community Forest Trust.

Local communities interested in having lands included in the Community Forest Trust need to file the request for nominations form by June 2, 2014. This form can be downloaded from DNR’s website at: http://1.usa.gov/1b46Jft.

In 2013, the Teanaway Community Forest in Kittitas county became the first Community Forest Trust property in Washington.

Included in the application is a checklist of materials needed to submit a nomination and a desired timeline for the process.

DNR Community Forest Trust program
Working forests in Washington are a vital part of our economy and culture. However, since the 1980s, more than one sixth—17 percent—of Western Washington forests have been converted to other land uses. As working forests vanish, so do many benefits for communities, including local timber, natural resources jobs, clean air and water, and recreation.

To address this, in 2011, DNR worked with the state legislature to create a new tool for local community partners to participate in protecting working forestlands that benefit their communities—the Community Forest Trust.

The first state community forest was established in 2013 in the Teanaway River Valley, just north of Cle Elum in Eastern Washington. This new category of working forestland is held by the state and sustainably managed by DNR, consistent with the values of the local community.