Managed forest plans offer benefits
Managed forest plans offer benefits to woodland owners
Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program (MFTIP) provides landowners opportunity to learn more about their forest while benefitting from reduced property tax rates
The Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program (MFTIP) recognizes the significance and environmental value provided by privately-owned forests in Ontario. The MFTIP program promotes management, by participating landowners of these privately-owned forests, to increase forest stewardship. The program also brings greater fairness to the property tax values of these lands, according to Certified Managed Forest Plan Approvers with Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA).
Landowners who enroll in the program have eligible forested lands on their property classed as Managed Forest and they are taxed at 25 per cent of the municipal tax rate set for residential properties. Landowners must own a minimum of four hectares (9.88 acres) of forested land and have a Managed Forest Plan approved by a certified Managed Forest Plan Approver to enroll in the program.
ABCA’s Managed Forest Plan Approvers are certified to work with landowners to develop and approve a Managed Forest Plan to meet MFTIP requirements for property enrollment. This service is provided on a fee-for-service basis but landowners find they recoup these costs quickly through the tax savings of having their property enrolled in the Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program, said Nathan Schoelier, Stewardship Technician with ABCA.
Ausable Bayfield Conservation staff work with landowners to complete the required forest inventory and develop a Managed Forest Plan that outlines the landowner’s goals and objectives to ensure long-term stewardship of their property. Management goals and objectives may include activities such as tree planting and logging or the landowner may include a less-intensive management approach such as protecting and enjoying the nature and recreational values their property has to offer, said Schoelier.
The annual deadline for submitting Managed Forest Plans for MFTIP, to have your property tax rate changed for the following year, is June 30.
“We encourage you to start the application process early in the year to ensure a comprehensive plan can be developed and submitted before the application deadline,” said Schoelier.
If you are interested in learning more about the Managed Forest Tax Incentive Program, or would like to begin the process to enroll your property in the program, contact Ian or Nathan at Ausable Bayfield Conservation at 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 to learn more.