Managing Agency Forest Service (FS)

Program Description

The Community Forest Program (CFP) is a grant program that authorizes the Forest Service to provide financial assistance to local governments, Tribal governments, and qualified nonprofit entities to establish community forests that provide continuing and accessible community benefits.

The CFP protects forests that are important for people and the places they call home. Community forests provide many benefits such as places to recreate and enjoy nature; they protect habitat, water quality and other environmental benefits, and they can provide economic benefits through timber resources. Community Forests have also long been sites for environmental and cultural education.

For more information, please visit the Community Forest Program page.

General Program Requirements

Eligible Land:

  • Private forest lands that are threatened by conversion to non-forest uses, are not lands held in trust by the United States, and can provide defined community benefits and allow public access
  • Forest lands: Lands that are at least five acres in size, suitable to sustain natural vegetation, and at least 75 percent forested. Forests are determined by both the presence of trees and the absence of non-forest uses.

Application Timeline:

  • Tribal applications must be sent to the Tribal Official responsible for making Tribal decisions by January 13, 2017.
  • After reviewed by the appropriate Tribal Official, applications must be forwarded to the Forest Service by February 17, 2017. The deadline will be the same time every year.
  • Please see the Request for Applications for the name and address of the Forest Service Regional Manager for your area.

Program Specifics:

  • Requires a 50 percent non-federal match.
  • Requires public access, which may be limited to protect resources or public health and safety.
  • Requires involving the community when establishing the community forest, developing the community forest plan, and deciding on long-term management needs.
  • Focuses on community benefit, including economic benefits resulting from sustainable forest management, recreational benefits secured with public access, natural resource protection, and forest based experiential learning, and replicable models of effective forest stewardship.

Your Next Steps

The following information will lead you to the next steps to apply for this program.

Application Process

The Forest Service published a call for applications for the Community Forest Program in the Federal Register on October 20, 2016. Applications are due to the State Forester or the appropriate Tribal official by January of every year.

A copy of the Application Solicitation published on October 20, 2016 

Application template sample

Application scoring guidance

Contact information for State Foresters

Application Forms:

Application for Federal Assistance (SF-424)

Budget Information- Construction Program (SF-424C)

Assurances- Construction Programs (SF-424D)

Federal Finance Report (SF-425)

Program Contact Information

Maya Solomon
Forest Legacy Program Specialist
202-205-1376 (O)
703-615-8417 (C)

Additional Information

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) Number10.675
Current Method of Tribal EligibilityProgram not specific to American Indians and Alaska Natives, but they are eligible
Can the funding from the program be renewedNo
Funding TypeDiscretionary
Entities Eligible for Grant AssistanceFederally Recognized Tribes and Tribal Organizations
Matching Funds RequiredYes
Recurring Base Funding for TribesNo
Do Tribes compete with other entities for funding from the program?Yes

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