Governor Kay Ivey on Monday awarded $10 million of the Coronavirus Relief Fund for a state-wide program to assist Alabama timber owners impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The forestry industry has an economic impact of over $23 billion in the state of Alabama and provides over 40,000 jobs in some of the most rural parts of our state,” Governor Ivey said. “CARES Act funds are intended to stabilize our economic losses and help our state recover from COVID-19. This program is designed to reduce the burden of our Alabama’s 23 million acres of timberland and the subsequent jobs that depend on a healthy timber industry.”
This grant program will be administered through the Alabama Forestry Commission and will include grants of up to $10,000 on a first-come, first-serve basis to qualifying timber owners who harvested timber in Alabama during the months of March through July.
“The Alabama Forestry Commission understands that forest landowners in the state have been negatively impacted by the coronavirus. These assistance payments will not make landowners whole, but they will help,” said State Forester Rick Oates. “An even more important effect of this program will be that this money will not sit in people’s bank accounts. It will help landowners better care for the forest resources with which they are entrusted, and in doing so, will be reinvested in the economy and be spent several times. We are pleased that Governor Ivey chose to use CARES money to help Alabama forest landowners.”
Alabama received approximately $1.9 billion of federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) funding to respond to and mitigate COVID-19. Alabama Act 2020-199 designated up to $300 million of the Coronavirus Relief Fund to be used to support citizens, businesses, and non-profit and faith-based organizations of the state directly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
For information regarding CARES Act funding for timberland, please contact:
Alabama Forestry Commission
Forest Management Division
Telephone: (334) 240-9334