Owners of nonindustrial private forestland in 16 Texas counties may be eligible for assistance if their property was damaged by wildfire last year. Those counties include Anderson, Bastrop, Cass, Cherokee, Gregg, Grimes, Harrison, Houston, Leon, Marion, Nacogdoches, Rusk, Smith, Trinity, Upshur and Walker.
Landowners may receive up to a 75 percent cost share for implementing approved Emergency Forest Restoration Program conservation practices. Approved procedures include prescribed burning, riparian forest buffer, firebreak establishment, tree planting, site preparation and forest stand improvement.
“This is an opportunity for those landowners who suffered tremendous losses due to wildfires last year to begin the process of re-establishing their forestlands,” said Shane Harrington, staff forester and Farm Bill coordinator for Texas Forest Service.
Texas Forest Service was designated by the Farm Service Agency as the technical service provider to assist landowners with writing reforestation plans and implementing the FSA-approved practices.
Landowners interested in participating in the Emergency Forest Restoration Program should submit an application to their local Farm Service Agency office by April 29. Once an application is deemed eligible to receive funding, a Texas Forest Service forester will begin working directly with the landowner to re-establish their forestlands.
Landowners interested in learning more about the funding program can visit the Farm Service Agency’s website or contact their local Texas Forest Service office.