Forest Practices Board reduces landowners’ paperwork for water-related projects on forestland

New rule for hydraulic permit applications is effective December 30, 2013. Beginning December 30, 2013, forest landowners will only need one permit, instead of two, to conduct their hydraulic projects on forest lands. Hydraulic projects are activities carried out in water, such as the construction, removal, or replacement of a culvert or bridge.

In 2012, the Washington State Legislature shifted the responsibility for approving hydraulic projects on forestland from the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) to the state Department of Natural Resources (DNR). As a result, the Hydraulic Project Approval permit will no longer be necessary for such projects if they are on forestland. The Forest Practices Application/ Notification (FPA/N) form will be the means for permitting forest practices-related hydraulic work.

The FPA/N form and instructions are updated to reflect the additional information required to permit these types of activities. WDFW and DNR strongly encourage forest landowners to work with both agencies to review the work and associated engineered designs before submitting an FPA/N. Contact the DNR Region office nearest you to arrange a pre-application review.

The Forest Practices Board has amended forest practices rules in Title 222 of the Washington Administrative Code. The rules, which will be effective on December 30, 2013, will soon be available for downloading.

The Board also approved new technical guidelines developed by DNR, WDFW, and other stakeholders representing state, federal, tribal, landowner, and conservation interests. These guidelines are in Forest Practices Board Manual 5 .

The Forest Practices Board
The Forest Practices Board is an independent agency that adopts rules for timber harvesting, forest road building, reforestation, and other forest practices. The rules protect public resources, such as water quality and fish habitat, while maintaining a viable timber industry. The Board includes members of the public, small forest landowners, counties and state agencies concerned with forest resources and commerce. DNR, which administers Forest Practices rules on 9.3 million acres of state and private lands, is administered by Commissioner of Public Lands Peter Goldmark, who chairs the Forest Practices Board.

December 16, 2013/DNR Public Notice