NBFIP: Am I Eligible to Participate?

The North Bay Forest Improvement Program (NBFIP) was created to provide public funds to support private investment in forest health and resilience projects to reduce vegetative fuel loads and risks of wildfire, insect infestation, and disease epidemics on private properties in the North Bay’s diverse and valuable forestlands. The intent of the program is to increase the pace, scale, and effectiveness of forest treatments in the north bay area by incentivizing and supporting landowners with partial payments to implement planned treatments where they would not otherwise be possible because of financial hardship. The intention of the program is not to provide grants that will cover 100% of the project costs. Assisting landowners in disadvantaged communities is a priority of the program.

Applicant Eligibility
At the most basic level, a participant is eligible to participate if they meet the following criteria:

  • The applicant is the landowner or another agent (land manager, forester) with the approval of the landowner to apply. Properties held in a Trust and LLCs are also eligible applicants.
  • The property is forestland containing any of the following vegetation types: oak woodland, redwood forests, mixed evergreen, ponderosa pine.
  • The property is at least five (5) acres and less than 500 acres.
  • The applicant has not already received funding through Proposition 68 for forest improvements on their property; this includes funding through the California Forest Improvement Program (CFIP) since 2018.
  • The applicant can afford the treatment after incentive payment. For more on program incentive payments and project costs, please see Payment Rates and Covered Activities

Project Eligibility
Projects under NBFIP are only eligible if they include one or more of the following activities:

  • Preparation of a Forest Management Plan by a Registered Professional Forester (RPF)
  • Only available if property falls within Disadvantaged or Severely Disadvantaged Communities (DAC or SDAC, respectively). For locating DAC and SDAC areas, you can use the following mapping tools:
    Community FactFinder from Parks for California (Be sure to check the layer “Disadvantaged Community” on the map)
    DAC Mapping Tool from CA State Water Board (Be sure to check the layer “Disadvantaged Communities -Block Groups (2018)”)
  • The project area must be at least one acre in size
  • Reforestation activities, such as
      • Site preparation
      • Tree purchase and planting
      • Tree shelters
  • Forest stand improvement activities, such as
      • Shaded fuel breaks
      • Douglas fir encroachment removal
      • Thinning “release” treatments
      • Pruning
  • Follow-up fuel hazard reduction activities, such as mastication/chipping or pile-burning.

A Good Fit
Though these qualities are not required, an applicant is a good fit for the program if they match the following description.

  • Applicant is committed to the sustainable management of their forestland
  • Applicant has developed* a forest management plan or other guiding document with a forester and has identified management units and planned treatments. Environmental review has been completed to satisfy the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). *Development of such a plan is an available practice for ownerships within DAC and SDAC communities
  • Applicant’s property falls within Disadvantaged Community (DAC) or Severely Disadvantaged Community (SDAC)
  • Applicant would not be able to implement treatments without the financial support of the incentives program

Expanded Opportunities for Disadvantaged Communities
Assisting landowners in disadvantaged communities is a priority of the program. If the applicant’s property is located in a disadvantaged community (DAC) or Severely Disadvantaged Community (SDAC), additional opportunities are available to them. These communities are identified by the state of California. For locating DAC and SDAC areas, you can use the following mapping tools:

Community FactFinder from Parks for California (Be sure to check the layer “Disadvantaged Community” on the map)
DAC Mapping Tool from CA State Water Board (Be sure to check the layer “Disadvantaged Communities -Block Groups (2018)”)

These applicants can request technical assistance to prepare a Forest Management Plan by a Registered Professional Forester (RPF).