Financial Assistance for Wildfire Resilience and Forest Health
Mary Maletzke talks about a wildfire resilience project on her Cle Elum property, which benefited from both DNR financial and technical assistance. (Natalie Johnson/DNR)
Are you a non-industrial forestland owner who wants help managing your lands for optimal forest health, creating a forest stewardship plan, or applying for financial assistance to reduce catastrophic wildfire risk or improve forest health?
DNR’s financial assistance program for wildfire resilience and forest health, formerly referred to as the cost-share program, focuses on technical and financial assistance to implement forest health or wildfire mitigation treatments or to help landowners write forest management plans.
Formerly confined to Eastern Washington, the program has recently been expanded to Western Washington landowners as well. Financial assistance is available for qualifying forestland owners with up to 5,000 acres.
Many forested areas in both Eastern and Western Washington need treatment to become more resilient to insect infestation, disease and wildfire. We’re committed to helping landowners protect their property from these threats. As part of the Financial Assistance Program, we offer a free consultation to gauge your wildfire and forest health risks, then share in paying for the cost of treatment with qualified landowners.
Reducing overcrowding in forests, through thinning or pruning back ladder fuels, reduces competition for light, water, and nutrients among remaining trees, making for a forest that is better able to cope with threats including catastrophic fire. And as a bonus, they also increase our forests’ productivity, leading to a greater return on investment both in wood production and carbon sequestration.
The program is part of the state's plan for improving the resiliency of our forests to threats including insects, disease, climate change, drought, and wildfire and involves maximizing the effectiveness of forest health treatments by coordinating and prioritizing forest management activities across watersheds and large landscapes.
Who is eligible?
Non-federal owners of forestland who own less than 5,000 forested acres in Washington state are eligible to participate in the cost-share program.
DNR’s Northeast Region (Okanogan, Ferry, Stevens, Pend Oreille, and Spokane counties, and Lincoln County north of U.S. Highway 2), email firstname.lastname@example.org, or Jessica Walston at email@example.com, or contact Kelsey Hagan at 509-684-7474 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Southeast Region (Adams, Asotin, Benton, Chelan, Columbia, Douglas, Franklin, Garfield, Grant, Kittitas, Klickitat, Walla Walla, Whitman, and Yakima counties, as well as portions of Lincoln and Skamania counties), email Erin Sinclair at email@example.com or call at 509-856-5608, or Al Lawson, district manager at Alan.Lawson@dnr.wa.gov.
Olympic Region (Clallam, Jefferson and Grays Harbor Counties north of the Chehalis River and west of Elma), email Gary Bell, district manager, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Northwest Region (Whatcom, San Juan, Skagit, Snohomish, Island and northeast King Counties (Highway 2 Corridor) Region DNR), email Gene Phillips, district manager at email@example.com.
South Puget Sound Region (King, except NE King County, Pierce, Kitsap, Mason Thurston and eastern Grays Harbor east of Elma and Chehalis River), email Matt Axe, district manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pacific Cascade Region (Lewis, Grays Harbor south and west of Chehalis River, Pacific, Wahkiakum, Cowlitz, Clark and Skamania west of the Dog Mountain trailhead), email Dan Friesz, district manager at email@example.com.
Frequently asked questions
Who will do the consultation?
A local forester in your area will meet with you.
How long will it take for someone to contact me to schedule a consultation?
You’ll be contacted in the order your inquiry was received. We try to be as timely as possible with requests.
How long will the consultation take?
The consultation time depends on the size of the property. Typically, consultations take between 30 minutes to two hours.
Will you do the work for me?
We do not have resources to do the work, but we will share the cost of the work up to a predetermined amount for qualified property owners. You will be notified of the amount we will cover when notified whether your application was approved.
How long will it take to find out whether my application for cost-sharing is approved?
It typically takes 1-2 weeks.
What if I want to do the work myself?
Property owners who qualify for the cost-sharing program are welcome to do the work themselves instead of hiring it out. We will provide details on how to get reimbursed for the work should you opt to do it yourself when notifying you of your application status.