Project Selection Criteria

The primary project selection criterion is an application’s Project Ranking Index score. All applications meeting the basic eligibility criteria for a category will be scored in the applicable index for that category (stewardship plans, management practices, easements, or timber bridges). Each scoring item evaluates a project’s potential contributions to forest health and water quality. Applications will be ranked according to their index score and funds distributed on the basis of ranking until available funds for a given period are exhausted.

Selection criteria include factors such as:

  • Location within a Priority Funding Area
  • Importance for source water protection
  • Proximity to surface water that connects to the Delaware River
  • Current participation in other forest management and conservation programs
  • Size of project
  • Adjacency to protected areas
  • If a purchased easement, the degree of leveraging with matching funds

Forest Stewardship Plans
Project Ranking Index

Forest Stewardship Plans Total Points Available
Source Water (Index value of 8-10=10 points, Index value of 6-7=5 points, Index value of 4-5=2 points, Index value 3 and below=0 points ) and Ability to Produce Clean Water Ranking (Index value of 20-24=10 points, Index value of 19=5 points, Index value of 16-18=2 points, Index value of 15 or below=0 points) 20
Adjacency of property to a stream (stream on property or directly adjacent to property (e.g. property boundary)=10 points, property within 300 feet of stream=5 points, >300 feet=0 points) 10
Feet of stream frontage on property(>100 feet = 10 points, 50-99 feet=7 points, 25-49 feet =5 points, 5-24 feet=3 points, none=0 points) 10
Located within Tier 1 =20 points, Located within Tier 2=10 points, Located within Tier 3=5 points 20
Size of parcel (5-10 acres 2 points, 11-25 acres 5 points, 26-50 acres 7 points, >50 acres 10 points) 10
New stewardship plan for a property with no previous written management plan (yes 10, no 0). If applying for plan update, score based on # of previous practices implemented (5 or more practices implemented=10 points, 3-4 practices= 7 points, 1-2 practices, 4 points 0 practices, 0 points) 10
Property is protected or connected with other protected land (yes 5, no 0) 5
Stewardship potential category (High 10 points, medium 7pts, low 4pts, no potential 0 points) 10
Current participation in other forest programs, such as Tree Farm, etc (5 points) 5
Enrolled in or applied for enrollment in preferential tax assessment programs (yes 5 points, no 0) 5
Soil Conditions - erodibility of predominant soil type(s), (highly erodible - variable score out of 5) 5
Total Possible Score 110