Congressman Glenn ‘GT’ Thompson (PA-05) and Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA) recently announced the award of $60,260 in grant funding to the Pennsylvania State University. The grant dollars will be used to educate landowners on the protection of forests for future generations. Funding for the project, “Planning the Future of the Forest: Seeing Landowners Like Me,” is from the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
“Forestry is close to the heart of many people across North central Pennsylvania. It is a major part of our heritage and economy. In addition, our forests are a major contributor to the health of our environment,” Thompson said. “I know the researchers and educators at Penn State will put this funding to good use.”
The grant funding is intended to address forest legacy planning among private landowners. This includes the transfer of forested properties to future generations, strategies to protect land from development, and other tools used to keep woodlands intact. The project involves landowners across the northeastern United States.
“Woodlands are at great risk for conversion to other uses and loss following land transfers,” said Dr. Allyson Muth at Penn State’s School of Forest Resources. “Funding for this project will enable us to establish resources for landowners to address forest legacy planning and ensure the continued stewardship of their woodlands. We appreciate Congressman Thompson’s and Senator Casey’s support for funding to the National Institute of Food and Agriculture that facilitates this outreach project to more than 20 states. “
“I appreciate the work Penn State educators are doing in making people across our state aware of their options for protecting the forests of ‘Penn’s Woods’ for years to come,” Casey said. “Pennsylvania is growing older, with the average age of a forest landowner at nearly 60-years of age. For those who plan to leave that land to members of their families, this program is essential.”
To learn more about how to transfer your forestland to the next generation visit Penn state’s Legacy Planning web site. There you can find publications, presentations, talking points, and other resources to assist you in your legacy planning efforts.