Baton Rouge: The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) is accepting applications for the 2012 Urban and Community Forestry Grant (U&CF) program.
The deadline to apply for the grant is February 28, 2013 at 4:30 p.m.
For the 2012 program year, $78,000 in federal funds is available. These funds will be distributed through a competitive grants allocation process in which LDAF will award seven grants for $10,000, one grant for $5,000 and one grant for $3,000.
“It is so important that we protect our natural resources such as our forests. One of Louisiana’s major commodities is forestry which at last report was valued at $3 billion,” said LDAF Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M.
In order to meet objectives outlined in the National Urban Forestry Guidelines and the Louisiana Urban Forestry Council’s Strategic Plan for Louisiana Community Forestry, this program is geared toward establishing and/or strengthening existing community forestry programs in Louisiana.
National direction has become more focused during the past years. Specific community forestry building activities being promoted includes the following:
- Employment of professional urban forestry staff at the community level;
- Development of community forestry management plans based on resource assessments/inventories;
- Development or strengthening of community forestry ordinances and policy; and
- Development or enhancement of local advocacy/advisory organizations.
The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) has also placed emphasis on the five national U&CF programs goals:
- Minimize the impact on land use change and urbanization on forests;
- Minimize the risk and impact of catastrophic events;
- Protect and improve air and water quality;
- Mitigate climate change;
- Energy Conservation.
The LDAF must report specific activities to the USFS each year. Future funding is based upon the number of communities participating in the activities. These matching fund grants are for activities not currently being funded and are not intended to substitute for existing programs already funded.