Officials with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Forestry presented a check to the Scioto County Commissioners for their share of timber sales revenue from Shawnee State Forest and Brush Creek State Forest, as a part of the Trees to Textbooks program.
In total Scioto County along with various townships and school districts will receive a collective $736,548.72.
Among the net total the Scioto County Government will be receiving $184,137.18. Brush Creek Township will receive $8,537.50; Morgan Township will receive $13,647.73. Nile Township will receive $75,015.56, Rarden Township will receive $57,713.46, Union Township will receive $29,222.93, Northwest Local School District is set to receive $164,775.80 and Washington-Nile Local School District will receive $150,031.13 and the Scioto Valley Local School District $53,467.43.
“We are proud to assist the local schools and communities that benefit from not only the jobs and economic value generated by these funds, but from the many environmental and social benefits of a well-managed forest,” said James Zehringer, Director of the Ohio Department of Natal Resources in a released statement “Proper management of Ohio’s state forests benefits Ohioans by creating diverse landscapes for wildlife, providing university research opportunities and promoting healthier lifestyles through recreational opportunities.”
Greg Guess, Deputy Chief, State Forests and Fire Management, ODNR – Division of Forestry said the Trees to Textbooks program has been in place since 1999. Since is founding the Division of Forestry has distributed 12.6 million dollars to school districts.
“The state does not pay any property taxes, so this is one way the local community that might otherwise be burdened by not having a lot of untaxed land in their district. The schools are likely the ones that take that more than anyone,”Guess said.
He said the revenue from the program each year is dependant on the amount of timber harvested.
“We have a lot of land in Western Scioto County and this year was a great year for Scioto County,” Guess said.
According to released information, ODNR Division of Forestry is responsible for the care of nearly 200,000 acres of state forests.
State forestry experts manage these woodlands for overall health and diversity, soil and water conservation, improved wildlife habitat and a variety of recreational opportunities.
Selected trees or areas of woodland are harvested through a competitive bid process that includes requirements for sound management practices. All work is conducted by certified master loggers under strict monitoring, according to officials.
For more information about ODNR Division of Forestry of the Trees to Textbooks programs visit, ohiodnr.gov/forestry.
Wayne Allen can be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 1933 or on Twitter @WayneallenPDT
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