Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection, Division of Forestry

The 2002 Farm Bill included a provision for a new program, the Forest Land Enhancement Program (FLEP) to be administered by the USDA Forest Service through the State Foresters. In Connecticut, FLEP will be administered by the DEP – Division of Forestry in cooperation with the University of Connecticut Cooperative Extension System and the Connecticut Forest and Park Association. FLEP has replaced the Stewardship Incentive Program (SIP) and the Forest Incentive Program (FIP).

FLEP will be comprised of administrative, educational and cost-share programs. For fiscal year 2003, there will be approximately $64,000 available for the cost-share of practices ranging from the preparation of a Forest Stewardship Plan (or revision) to Timber Stand Improvement and tree planting. Many of the same practices cost-shared under SIP will be cost-shared by FLEP. The main difference being that more money will be available for secondary practices than for the writing of plans. Presently, 350 landowners owning more than 40,000 acres of forest land have approved Forest Stewardship plans. A Stewardship plan is required in order to receive funding for other practices.

Landowners who are interested in receiving cost-share funds should contact a service forester who will have the necessary application form. In Tolland, Windham and New London Counties, forest landowners should contact Dick Raymond. Dick’s phone numbers are (860) 455-0699 or (860) 376-2513. His address is Goodwin State Forest HQ, 23 Potter Rd., Hampton, CT 06247. It is anticipated that cost-share funds will be available in September or October, 2003.

For further information, please contact Fred Borman, Program Specialist I, DEP-Division of Forestry at (860) 424-3634 or Tom Worthley, Stewardship Coordinator, UConn CES at (860) 345-4511.