Message from Tami Miketa, Manager of the SFLO

tami picture update 062012

Forest Stewardship Education and Landowner Assistance Opportunities

Spring is here and summer is just around the corner. This is the time of year when DNR’s Small Forest Landowner Office coordinates with other agency partners to conduct a number of forestry education and landowner assistance courses, workshops, and seminars.  Here are a few upcoming events that I’m sure you will enjoy:

 Forest and Range Owners Field Days

Forest and Range Owners Field Days offers a hands-on “out in the woods” educational experience for the whole family. Attending this event will help prepare you to plan and execute sound forest management practices, enabling you to accomplish your objectives, reduce risks, and protect your financial investment. Participants can attend outdoor seminars offered throughout the day on dozens of forest stewardship topics such as forest health, thinning, pruning, riparian management, wildlife habitat, chainsaw safety, wildfire protection,  counting and measuring trees, tree and shrub identification, forestry taxes,  landowner assistance programs,  management of invasive plants, noxious weed control, and using a GPS to navigate and manage your land.

These field days provide educational opportunities for participants of all ages and skill levels, regardless of property size. They offer an excellent introduction to forest stewardship, provide advanced learning opportunities for experienced landowners, or simply allow landowners a chance to refresh existing skills and be updated in the latest forest research and developments. 

This summer three field days will be held:

Tonasket on June 22
Sumas on July 27
Forks on August 24 (details coming soon).

Forest Stewardship Coached Planning Courses

Coached Planning courses are offered to forest landowners throughout the state of Washington. These short courses typically include one evening class per week for six to nine weeks. The classes are designed to help forest landowners develop customized management solutions to meet their individual ownership objectives. Participants identify their property ownership goals and develop a comprehensive forest stewardship plan. This stewardship plan may qualify landowners for cost-share assistance for plan implementation, as well as recognition as a Stewardship Forest, and a reduction in current-use property tax rates.

Three Coached Planning Courses are currently scheduled:

Preston starting September 24
Whidbey Island starting October 3
Chehalis starting September 5 (details coming soon).

Ties to the Land Workshops

Who will care for your land when you’re gone? Will it be kept intact and protected, or will it be divided up and sold off in pieces? Will it become a source of conflict between surviving family members? What is the long-term future you want for your property?  The Ties to the Land Workshop explores these questions and others in succession planning. The purpose of this workshop is not to provide legal or tax advice; it is to explore the human side of estate planning, and the critical first steps to take before sitting down with a professional estate planner.  Things that are discussed during this workshop include:

  • Identifying long-term goals for the property
  • Gauging family members interest and emotional connections to the property
  • Identifying heirs that have the capacity/competency to manage the property into the future
  • Developing strategies for addressing challenging family dynamics
  • Facilitating open and productive communication in your family around the uncomfortable topics of death and inheritance.

Click on the date below to learn more about Ties to the Land Workshops:

June 1 in Port Angeles
June 8 in Newport
June 8 in Olympia
June 15 in Chehalis
June 29 in Port Townsend.

Please be sure to check out the SFLO Forest Stewardship and WSU Extension websites regularly for more information about these and other valuable educational and landowner assistance opportunities coming to your neighborhood soon.  www.dnr.wa.gov/sflo and www.forestry.wsu.edu.