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Southern Pine Beetle Community Recovery Grants

The 2017 Southern Pine Beetle Community Recovery Grant opportunity is now available. Learn more information about this opportunity below or visit the NYS Grants Gateway website (link leaving DEC's website) to apply.
closeup of a southern pine beetle

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation's (DEC) Southern Pine Beetle Community Recovery Grants program provides funding that can be used to remove trees infested or killed by the southern pine beetle (SPB), replant impacted areas with native trees and other plants, and conduct forest management activities, such as thinning and prescribed burns, that would make the forests less susceptible to SPB attack.

Southern pine beetle has killed thousands of pine trees on Long Island since it was first discovered in 2014. These grants will help communities in Nassau and Suffolk Counties maintain public safety and recreational opportunities, slow the spread of SPB, and protect water quality, wildlife habitat, and endangered species by removing the dead and infested trees and replanting native species in areas where trees have been killed. In addition, these grants will help communities make their forests healthier and less susceptible to SPB attack through forest management activities like thinning and prescribed burning.

Request for Applications

This page provides an overview of the available Southern Pine Beetle Community Recovery grant opportunity and should be used as a preliminary reference only. Refer to the full Request for Applications (RFA), available on the NYS Grants Gateway (link leaving DEC's website), for details on the application process, eligibility requirements, project scoring, and contractual requirements.

  • DEC anticipates that approximately $500,000 will be available for this grant program.
  • Applicants may request a minimum grant amount of $25,000, up to a maximum amount of $75,000.
  • The minimum amount of local match funds required for this program is 25% of the requested amount of grant funding.
  • Projects must be completed within a two-year contract term.
  • DEC anticipates that grant awards will be announced in the fall of 2017.

What Types of Projects are Eligible?

The following types or projects are eligible for funding:

1. Tree and Pine Barrens Planting

Applicants may apply for funding to plant trees and/or native Pine Barrens species on public property to replace pine trees affected by southern pine beetle, and promote habitat creation; air and water quality; increased property values; community revitalization; public health; and/or improved quality of life for residents. Applicants must use only non-invasive species for planting. A list of invasive species is available on the Nuisance & Invasive Species page.

2. Infested and Hazard Tree Removal

Applicants may apply for funding to remove trees infested or once-infested by southern pine beetle. These projects will help remove hazard trees from rights-of-way, parks, and in other public spaces as well as help slow the spread of the beetle by removing infested trees. Projects where the majority of trees targeted for removals are infested will receive more points in the review process as removal of infested trees

3. Thinning

Applicants may apply for funding to remove some of the living trees from an overcrowded forest that are susceptible to, but not yet infested with, southern pine beetle to promote resiliency of remaining trees to southern pine beetle attack.

4. Prescribed Burning

Applicants may apply for funding to write prescribed burn plans and conduct prescribed burns to help prevent or manage southern pine beetle. Prescribed burn plans will need to be compliant with 6NYCRR Part 194. Burn Plans must be approved by DEC's Region 1 regional land manager before any burning can be implemented. Writing of the plan and conducting of prescribed burns must be under the supervision of an NWCG (National Wildlife Coordination Group) qualified Burn Boss.

Where Can the Projects Take Place?

Eligible projects must be located in an area affected by southern pine beetle in Nassau and/or Suffolk County in New York State. Projects must be implemented on public properties owned by governmental entities, as defined in the RFA.

Who May Apply?

Eligible applicants include governmental entities, as defined in the RFA, and 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporations.

How May I Apply?

All New York State grant applicants must be registered in the NYS Grants Gateway system (link leaving DEC's website) to be eligible to apply for any NYS grant opportunity.

Not-for-profit applicants must also prequalify in the Grants Gateway system prior to the application deadline to be considered eligible to apply for a grant. Registration and prequalification must be completed online in the NYS Grants Gateway.

Additional Application Information

Grants Gateway Tips - Southern Pine Beetle Community Recovery Grants (PDF, 778 KB) - Includes information on how to find, complete, and submit the Southern Pine Beetle Community Recovery application in Grants Gateway.

NYS Grants Reform - Information for Current and Potential Grantees (link leaving DEC's website) - Includes step-by-step tutorials and guides to registration, prequalification, and applying for a grant opportunity through Grants Gateway.