Trust Land Transfer
A Special Program for Special Places
DNR manages state trust lands to produce revenue for trust beneficiaries through timber harvest, agriculture, and other activities. Revenue pays for essential public services such as schools, roads, hospitals, and libraries.
However, some of these lands have limited potential to generate income in the reasonably foreseeable future due to physical, legal, access, or other constraints. Many of these lands also have high ecological values and public benefits such as opportunities for hiking, horseback riding, bird watching, or fishing.
Established in 1989, the Trust Land Transfer (TLT) is a program that enables DNR to keep these special places in public ownership while also improving the financial performance of the state trust lands portfolio. Through TLT, DNR:
- Transfers economically underperforming lands with high ecological values and public benefits to a receiving agency. Many transferred parcels become parks, open space, nature preserves, or similar designations.
- Purchases real property replacement lands that can be managed for timber production or leased for agriculture, grazing, or other uses to generate long-term, sustainable revenue for trust beneficiaries.
The TLT program is funded through the Washington State Legislature. Click here for a high-level overview of how the TLT program works. Visit the following pages to understand the steps of the program: Selecting a Parcel for Transfer, Selecting a Receiving Agency, Preparing an Application, the Eligibility Determination, Prioritization, the Advisory Committee, and Transfer and Replacement. Visit the Proposed and Current Transfers and Success Stories pages to learn more about proposed, current, and past transfers.
The TLT program was revitalized in 2021 and 2022 to make it stronger, more effective, and more transparent. DNR completed this work in cooperation with two external work groups.
- Click here for a summary of the changes that were made to the TLT program.
- Visit this link to learn more about the revitalization process.
- Click here to see the legislation that establishes the TLT program in Washington State statute.
Application Period for the 2025-2027 Biennium
The application period for the 2025-2027 biennium will open on August 1, 2023 and close on September 30, 2023. Click here to learn more about the application process. Click here to download a parcel application and click here to download a manual to help you complete your submittal package. Submit applications to firstname.lastname@example.org on or before 5 pm on September 30, 2023.
If you wish to submit a parcel for consideration, DNR recommends you begin working with a potential receiving agency as soon as possible. It can take weeks, months, or even years for a receiving agency to decide whether to accept a transferred parcel.
Parcels Funded for Transfer in the 2023-2025 Biennium
As part of the revitalization effort, DNR and the second TLT work group conducted a pilot project in August, 2022 to test some of the improvements to the TLT program. After the pilot project, DNR submitted a list of 10 proposed parcels to the Washington State Legislature. Click here to learn more about the parcels. Five of these parcels have been funded for transfer: Eglon, Devils Lake, Upper Dry Gulch, Chapman Lake, and West Tiger. Refer to the Proposed and Current Transfers page for more information.