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U.S. Forest Service

Stewardship Contracting Overview

Stewardship contracting includes natural resource management practices seeking to promote a closer working relationship with local communities in a broad range of activities that improve land conditions. These projects shift the focus of federal forest and rangeland management towards a desired future resource condition. They are also a means for federal agencies to contribute to the development of sustainable rural communities, restore and maintain healthy forest ecosystems, and provide a continuing source of local income and employment.

Authority

Section 604 (16 USC 6591c) of Public Law 108-148 as amended by Section 8205 of Public Law 113-79, the Agricultural Act of 2014 - grants the Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management permanent authority to enter into stewardship contracts or agreements to achieve land management goals for the National Forests or public lands that meet local and rural community needs. Section 8205 supersedes the temporary authority granted to the Forest Service in section 347 of Public Law 105-277, the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Appropriations Act, 1999. 

Some of the features of the authorizing legislation includes allowing Forest Service and BLM to apply the value of timber or other forest products removed as an offset against the cost of services received, apply excess receipts from a project to other authorized stewardship projects, select contracts and agreements on a "best value" basis, and award a contract or agreement up to ten years which may stimulate long term investment in the local community. Stewardship contracts may be used for treatments to improve, maintain, or restore forest or rangeland health; restore or maintain water quality; improve fish and wildlife habitat; and reduce hazardous fuels that pose risks to communities and ecosystem values.

Tribal Forest Protection Act

The purpose of the Tribal Forest Protection Act (TFPA) is to work in partnership with the tribes to improve forest health on both agency and tribal lands.

TFPA Direction

TFPA Information

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