The Iowa Legislature appropriated state infrastructure funds to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to be used for a community-based tree planting program for derecho recovery tree planting. Additionally, through the USDA Forest Service and National Association of State Foresters 2021 State Urban Forest Resilience Grant Program, the Iowa DNR received funds for emerald ash borer reforestation.
The Community Forestry Grant Program provides reimbursable grants ranging from $500 to $5,000 to be used for the purchase and planting of trees suitable to Iowa on publicly owned lands. Qualifying public planting lands include, but are not limited to, street right-of-ways, parks, school grounds, courthouse lawns, public buildings, fairgrounds, cemeteries, libraries and trails. Award recipients are required to provide a dollar-for-dollar cash match for purchase of trees and materials from Iowa businesses.
More than $21,000 in matching funds will be made available to local governments, schools and service organizations in the 27 Iowa counties included in the Governor’s Derecho Disaster Proclamation, as well as $50,000 in matching funds available to local governments, schools, and service organizations in the 84 counties with confirmed Emerald Ash Borer. The application and rules are available online at www.iowadnr.gov/urbanforestry. Applications are due by March 30.