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BEND, OR -- Property owners in and around La Pine will soon be able to ask for financial help to clear their land of wildfire fuels. The Deschutes National Forest was just awarded a $1.2 million USDA grant to help reduce wildfire threats, protect water supply and improve wildlife habitat.

 

Jean Nelson Dean, with the Deschutes National Forest, says the money will be funneled through the Forest Service. "Private landowners can apply for that funding to do fuels reduction work and restoration work on their private lands. Walker Range is going to be able to do work with private landowners in Klamath County, and the Oregon Department of Forestry will also be able to work with private landowners throughout the Deschutes County area."  She adds, "They can either do the work on their own lands to reduce fuels; or they can work with private contractors, which is what a lot of people tend to do."
 
It’s the only new grant to come to Oregon from the Joint Chiefs’ Landscape Restoration Partnership. "In the La Pine area, we are going to use some of the funding on public lands," says Nelson Dean. "The idea is ‘all lands, all hands,’ so the work that we do on public lands is also being done on private lands. You’re seeing a very large restoration work across the landscape." She says the goal is to have projects underway prior to this year's fire season.
 
To hear our full conversation with Jean Nelson Dean, visit our Podcast Page.

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