Federal Grants to Fight Emerald Ash Borer available for NE OH Communitites

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COLUMBUS, OH – Federal grant funds totaling $600,000 are available to communities impacted now or in the future by the emerald ash borer (EAB) in 61 Ohio counties, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), Division of Forestry. Grant funding, which requires a 50 percent local match, will support the removal and replacement of publicly owned ash trees by cities, villages and townships.

“These funds provided by the USDA Forest Service will aid local jurisdictions in the response and recovery of urban forests from EAB infestations,” said David Lytle, state forester and chief of the Ohio Division of Forestry. “Removing hazardous and soon to be hazardous trees from public streets and restoring lost canopy cover are the primary objectives of this grant program.”

Since the emerald ash borer was first discovered in northwest Ohio in 2003, millions of ash trees have been killed by this devastating invasive insect, which can claim the life of an otherwise healthy, mature tree in as little as one year. Due to the insect’s spread, many Ohio communities are now confronted with the costly expense of dead ash tree removal and replacement.

Communities in the following counties are eligible to apply for these Ash Removal and Canopy Restoration grant monies: Adams, Ashtabula, Athens, Belmont, Brown, Butler, Carroll, Champaign, Clark, Clermont, Clinton, Columbiana, Coshocton, Cuyahoga, Darke, Delaware, Fairfield, Fayette, Franklin, Gallia, Geauga, Greene, Guernsey, Hamilton, Harrison, Highland, Hocking, Holmes, Jackson, Jefferson, Knox, Lake, Lawrence, Licking, Logan, Madison, Mahoning, Meigs, Miami, Monroe, Montgomery, Morgan, Morrow, Muskingum, Noble, Perry, Pickaway, Pike, Portage, Preble, Ross, Scioto, Stark, Summit, Trumbull, Tuscarawas, Union, Vinton, Warren, Washington and Wayne.

To access Ash Removal and Canopy Restoration grant instructions and application forms, go to http://www.ohiodnr.com/default/tabid/23073/Default.aspx or e-mail drew.todd@dnr.state.oh.us or call (614) 265-6707. Applications must be submitted electronically no later than close of business on December 15.

Healthy, safe and functional trees improve our cities and towns by enhancing clean air and water, increasing property values, reducing erosion and stormwater runoff, providing wildlife habitat, moderating temperature, lessening energy demands, and offering year-round enjoyment. For more information of the many benefits of trees, urban tree care and this grant program, visit www.ohiodnr.com/forestry.

Ohio grows more acres of trees than corn and soybeans combined. The ODNR Division of Forestry works to promote the wise use and sustainable management of Ohio’s public and private woodlands. To learn more about Ohio’s woodlands, visit the Division of Forestry’s Web site at www.ohiodnr.com/forestry.

The Ohio Department of Natural Resources ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR Web site at www.ohiodnr.com.

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