Jefferson County seeks DNR collaboration on forest lands

Board suggests parcels around Daybob Bay

PORT TOWNSEND — Jefferson County is hoping to collaborate more closely with the state Department of Natural Resources on forest management following an $83 million appropriation from the state Legislature.

At their regular meeting Monday, the Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved a response to a letter sent by Commissioner of Public Lands Hilary Franz with recommendations on which lands the county would like to see benefit from DNR investment and collaboration.

“I would like to invite you to work with me and my team to develop a strategy for how DNR manages the county forest trust lands in your county,” Franz said in her June 7 letter. “I am seeking your collaboration and input so that together we can make decisions that reflect our shared values.”

In their letter, commissioners identified the expansion of the Dabob Bay Natural Area; specific parcels for the Trust Land Transfer program and parcels for potential reconveyance or co-management between the county and DNR.

DNR has $70 million available to purchase new forest lands to offset a commitment to move up to 2,000 acres of structurally complex, carbon-dense state trust forest lands to conservation status, and commissioners identified nearly 500 acres in Jefferson County that could benefit from that program.

Most of those lands are located around Dabob Bay, and commissioners suggested those parcels could be included in an expansion of the Dabob Bay Natural Area. Jefferson County has been seeking to expand the natural area for several years and had already identified parcels that may be eligible for DNR’s program.

The county has also identified up to 2,500 acres in the region owned by forest products company Rayonier Inc. that commissioners say the company is willing to sell which are adjacent to working forest, recreation and conservation lands.

“We see great potential for DNR to acquire significant acreage from private forest landowners with areas that would connect well with existing DNR-managed lands and be in the same junior taxing districts as many of our conservation priorities,” the commissioners’ letter said.

The state’s Trust Land Transfer program allows for certain forest lands to be placed into conservation status while replacing them with other, more economically viable lands. There are roughly 1,500 acres — mostly within the Dabob Bay expansion area — that commissioners listed as candidates for the transfer program, but the letter states the boundaries of the natural area must be expanded before those lands can qualify.

The letter also identifies just under 700 acres of state-owned lands the county is interested in for reconveyance or co-management with DNR.

The commissioners’ letter also asks for a meeting with Franz and her team in the near term to discuss the increased collaboration.


Reporter Peter Segall can be reached at

More in News

Rich Foutch of Active Construction, Inc., in Tacoma paints a line on the roadway at the new roundabout at Kearney Street and state Highway 20 for the placement of temporary stripes in a pedestrian crosswalk on Monday in Port Townsend. The temperatures have to be in the mid-50s to install permanent striping, he said. (Steve Mullensky/for Peninsula Daily News)
Roundabout striping

Rich Foutch of Active Construction, Inc., in Tacoma paints a line on… Continue reading

Proposal to rename Sequim road put on hold

Rotary, city to consider other options to honor local Olympian

Researcher: Managed forests needed to fight climate change

Wood products can replace existing fossil fuel-based materials

Jefferson County updates fee schedules

Environmental Public Health up 6 percent

The downtown Port Angeles Christmas tree is surrounded by people during a lighting ceremony on Saturday at First and Lincoln streets. The 30-foot tree will stand at the Conrad Dyar Memorial Fountain plaza through the holidays. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)
Lit up for the holidays

The downtown Port Angeles Christmas tree is surrounded by people during a… Continue reading

Community Aid seeks support for Toys for Sequim Kids

Nonprofit helps hundreds of children with Christmas presents

Planned electrical outage in Forks on Thursday

A planned power outage in Forks will affect electric service… Continue reading

Nordland man dies of injuries from Nov. 14 wreck

A second person involved in a two-car collision on Nov.… Continue reading

Santa Claus, portrayed by Stephen Rosales of Sequim, waves to the crowd after his arrival by vintage fire truck at Centennial Place in downtown Sequim on Saturday, part of the city’s Hometown Holidays celebration. Santa, accompanied by Irrigation Festival royalty, greeted children next to the city’s Christmas tree in an event that also featured music by the Sequim City Band and a lighted tractor parade. (Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News)
Holiday tradition

Santa Claus, portrayed by Stephen Rosales of Sequim, waves to the crowd… Continue reading

District 3 chief pick bows out

Fire officials could resume search in ’24

Clallam considers law enforcement pact with Makah

The Clallam County commissioners will consider a contract with… Continue reading