SAF Applauds Disaster Aid for Forest Landowners

 June 11, 2019

The Society of American Foresters (SAF) commends Congress and President Trump for delivering much needed aid through the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Act (H.R.2156) for private landowners recovering from recent floods, tornadoes, hurricanes and wildfires. 

“We’re pleased that Congress and the President were able find bipartisan agreement. This bill provides much needed help to many affected forest landowners, particularly with the 2019 fire and hurricane season looming”, said SAF President John McNulty.

Among the provisions is $480 million for the Emergency Forest Restoration Program (EFRP) of the Farm Service Agency, which will remain available to the program until all has been spent. 

The EFRP provides financial assistance to non-industrial private forests landowners impacted by disasters, including insect infestation and drought. To be eligible for EFRP aid, the land must have had standing tree cover before the disaster occurred and sustain damage to the resource, which considerably affects future use of the land. 

The bill provides additional assistance to private landowners for disaster relief through various programs under the USDA Forest Service, including $12 million for State and Private Forestry and $1 million for the Forest Inventory and Analysis Program.