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The Division of Forestry for the Indiana Department Natural Resources has notified 16 counties include 5 locally they will receive shares of nearly $442,000 to help support public safety efforts of rural and volunteer fire departments.

The State’s Division of Forestry allocates 15 percent of timber sale revenue from state forests to counties in which harvests occur. Each county shares the funds it receives with rural and volunteer fire departments that maintain a cooperative agreement with the DNR’s Fire Control Headquarters.

The money distributed is a record for the program despite a dip in the volume of timber sold during the last fiscal year. Higher timber prices and the timing of payments to the DNR contributed to the record funding.

Now although timber sale revenue helps fund several DNR Division of Forestry programs, DNR’s forestry management focus is to improve and maintain forest health for long-term sustainability as required by state law. DNR forestry management practices are based on the best science and nationally accepted standards, and conducted in a certified sustainable manner that earns continued approval from the Sustainable Forestry Initiative and the Forest Stewardship Council.

Local counties receiving funds include Dubois who’ll be allotted just over 18-hundred dollars. Crawford County at just over 11-thousand 6-hundred dollars. Martin just over 14-thousand dollars. Perry more than 15-thousand dollars and Pike County will receive over 20-thousand five hundred dollars in timber sales revenue.

This year, 123 rural and volunteer fire departments will benefit. Fire departments are encouraged to use the funds to improve their wildland firefighting capability.

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