November 18, 2005
FORESTRY PROGRAM PROVIDES LOW-INTEREST FINANCING TO LOGGERS
USING BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES
Linked Deposit Program rewards landowners, loggers committed to environmentally friendly harvesting methods
COLUMBUS, OH - Ohio landowners and loggers committed to using Best Management Practices for forest management projects can receive low-interest financing to purchase equipment that will help them protect and improve the health of private woodlands, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). The first such purchase of low-impact equipment through the conservation financing program was recently completed.
The Linked Deposit Program is administered by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency with technical support from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR) Division of Forestry. Promoting the use of low-impact harvesting equipment is a key part of the division’s Ohio Forestry Initiative.
Redoutey Logging of McDermott became the first company to use the program by securing a seven-year, $335,000 loan through US Bank. Through the Linked Deposit Program, the lending rate was reduced from 7.25 percent to 3.75 percent, resulting in a savings of approximately $40,000 over the life of the loan.
“This program will increase the use of Best Management Practices and environmentally friendly equipment in Ohio’s logging industry,” said John Dorka, chief of the ODNR Division of Forestry. “We expect that this is the first of many potential success stories in promoting the use of low impact equipment.”
Certified Master Loggers - those who have received special training on harvesting and the use Best Management Practices - can use the new program to obtain low-interest financing from participating banks through the state’s Water Pollution Control Loan Fund.
Potential purchases that could be made through the Linked Deposit Program include: bulldozers, mulching machines, cut-to-length harvesters, forwarders, tractors, tree planters and associated equipment. It also applies to retrofitting of existing equipment such as flotation tires and bridges.
The linked deposit financing mechanism was originally developed in the 1990s to encourage best management practices in agriculture. This program marks the first time it as been applied to forestry practices.
A review panel works with applicants, ensuring they are certified through the voluntary Ohio Master Logger Program and determining if equipment is eligible for financing. The review panel also makes sure applicants have filed Silvicultural Operation and Management Plans with the appropriate county soil and water conservation district and that those plans will be monitored throughout the project.
Ohio’s wood products industry contributes more than $23 billion a year to the state’s economy.
For more information on the Linked Deposit Program, contact the ODNR Division of Forestry at 2045 Morse Road, Building H-1, Columbus, OH 43229 or call 877-247-8733.