FOREST ASSISTANCE PROGRAM
The Forestry Assistance Program (FAP) provides an initial professional contact for private forest landowners. Forest management can include many different activities. These activities are based on your goals and objectives. Some examples of what the Forestry Assistance Program can assist with include: timber management, wildlife management, and non-native, invasive species management.
Photo Credits: Joshua Isaac
How Can We Help?
Our District Forester can conduct a free site visit, and a basic assessment of your forested property in Dickinson and Menominee Counties. Contact Joshua Isaac to schedule a site visit. Call (906) 774-1550 ext. 100.
We also offer a referral service which puts you in contact with a resource professional. Services provided by private resource professionals include, but are not limited to, management plan writing, timber sale set-up, timber appraisal, etc.
The District Forester can also help answer any forestry related questions you may have, and assist in other program enrollment and education. Workshops put on by the forester will be posted to our website and our Facebook page. Feel free to call for more information on what the District Forester does and what they can do for you!
Qualified Forest Program
Do you manage, or are you interested in managing your forests for timber production? If so, you should consider enrolling in the Qualified Forest Program. This program is designed to boost Michigan’s economy by providing an incentive for landowners to manage their timber. In order to qualify, a parcel must be at least 20 contiguous acres, of which 80% contains productive forests. If a parcel is more than 40 acres, only 50% must contain productive forests. If more than one parcel under the same ownership is enrolled, each one must qualify individually. Parcels already receiving the homestead tax exemption are not eligible.
If your parcel qualifies, you must hire a qualified forester (which the DCD can provide a referral) to prepare a forest management plan. While enrolled in the program, you will not be required to pay school operating taxes (typically 18 mils) on your qualified property in return for following the timber management activities outlined in your forest management plan. A team of economists determined that this program will boost our state’s economy without harming its schools. Applicants have until September 1 of the year before they receive the tax exemption to enroll. Unlike the Commercial Forest Program, you are not required to allow the public on your land for fishing and hunting. If you are interested in learning more about this program please contact the USDA Service Center in Kingsford, MI. 906-774-1550 ext. 100. Click here for the QFP informational packet.
MAEAP Forests, Wetland, and Habitat*A*Syst
Do you want to make sure that you are doing all you can to protect and improve your forests, wetlands, and wildlife habitat? If so, you should participate in the MAEAP Forests, Wetland, and Habitat program. This free, voluntary State program allows you to work through a series of questions with a forester to determine the level of stewardship on your property. If you meet all of the criteria, your property will be MAEAP verified and you will receive a large sign to display on the edge of your property. If you don’t initially meet all of the criteria, the forester doing the review will help you work on any shortcomings.
To learn more about MAEAP, please visit the following website or call Dickinson Conservation District office at (906) 774-1550 ext. 100
Other Services, Programs, and Considerations
Getting enrolled in the American Tree Farm System
Making a donation to the Conservation District so we can continue serving the community
Becoming a member of the Michigan Forest Association (MFA)
Asking about getting a Forest Management Plan through EQIP
Asking about the other programs and services the Conservation District provides landowners
Letting other landowners know about the services the Conservation District provides
Coming to board meetings or the office to participate in how the Conservation District functions
Calling your local government officials and showing support for the Michigan Forestry Assistance Program
Frequently Asked Questions About the Referral Service
How much do resource professional services cost?
Because costs can vary by location, type of project, services requested, and many other factors, it is difficult to estimate how much services cost until the professional has a better idea of what exactly is required in the project.
How does a landowner decide which resource professional to use?
It is up to the landowner to determine which resource professional they would like to use after speaking with each of them. We encourage landowners to contact all resource professionals on their list to determine which professional can best help meet management at a competitive price.
What if a landowner decides they don’t want to hire a resource professional after they have been through the process and received their list?
There is no cost for any of the services provided by the conservation district (initial consultation, creation of landowner profile, informational help, compilation of interested resource professionals list, etc.) and there is no obligation for a landowner to hire a resource professional, even if they have already received their list.
Does a landowner have to worry about unwanted solicitations from resource professionals?
Resource professionals do not have access to landowner contact information, so unless the landowner contacts a resource professional and provides them with their contact information, professionals have no way of reaching a landowner.
Funding and Support
Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development
Natural Resources Conservation Service
Michigan Department of Natural Resources