Forest Land Owner Info Center

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Agency contact information for the following topics can be found at the bottom of this page.

I. Burn Bans and Permitting

Burn permitting is administered by the N.C. Forest Service. Below are information and tips for obtaining a burn permit. 

  1. Check for active burn bans issued by the Forest Service. Bans can be viewed by clicking here, the NCFS News Releases, for the current year.
  2. Review open burn rules and regulations set forth by the Department of Air Quality. The Fayetteville Regional Office serves Montgomery County. Review N.C. G.S. Ch. 106, Art. 78: Regulation of Open Fires.
  3. Apply for a burn permit in person at Montgomery Farm and Garden, or online through the N.C. Forest Service.
  4. Burn responsibly! The leading cause of wildfires is careless burning of debris. Don’t be careless. Be ready. Visit the Fire Safety Outdoors page.

These steps and regulations are designed to prevent wildfires, and protect one of our most valuable natural resources – forests that connect and benefit all North Carolinians. By burning properly, you are helping protect your community and forests for future generations.

II. Prescribed Burn Training

The Sandhills Prescribed Burn Association (SPBA) provides workshops, field days, and mentorship programs to private landowners and participants who wish to increase their comfort, capacity, and confidence to conduct prescribed burns, and participate in actively restoring Longleaf pine ecosystems on private and public lands.

The SPBA is highly inclusive and welcomes landowners and citizens who desire to learn more about, or simply participate in, prescribed burning. This includes people who’ve been doing their own burns for years, landowners who are new to the prescribed fire community, people who may use contractors to burn on their land but want to be knowledgeable about the process, and citizens who are interested in the processes and outcomes of prescribed fire.

If you want to learn how to use prescribed fire as part of your forest management program, or if you are interested in joining and supporting efforts, please contact the SPBA in the contact list below.

III. Forest Management Plans

Forests are natural resources that provide social, economic, and environmental benefits to woodland owners and their communities. To ensure, protect and preserve these values, State and National forests follow management plans. Private forest owners also have this opportunity, and by doing so steward their forest resources for future generations. 

Forest management plans incorporate your vision and goals, and increase efficient usage of natural and financial resources. Basic plan components include goals and objectives, property maps, property description and forest inventory, and activities and timeline. To learn more about the process and planning, please refer to the following Extension Forestry publication: Management Plans: A Planning Guide for Landowners.

N.C. Cooperative Extension can only provide information, education, and advice on management plans. Only professional foresters are licensed to develop management plans. Plan development is subject to a contract and service fees. To inquire about making a forest management plan for your property, first contact the North Carolina Forest Service or a Consulting Forester. To learn more about Consulting Foresters, visit the following site: NCFS Consulting Foresters. To find registered foresters, access the list at www.ncbrf.org/list.htm.

When searching for a Consulting Forester, it is recommended to “shop around”. Ask these professionals for their qualifications, experience, services and fees, and client references. Extension Forestry recommends avoiding advice from Consulting Foresters who are employed by a business that buys timber, which may create a conflict of interest. N.C. Cooperative Extension Montgomery County can recommend reputable individuals upon request. 

Read more:
First…See a Forester
Benefits of Using a Consulting Forester

IV. Present Use Value

Under the N.C. present-use value (PUV) program, “forestland” is defined as land that is a part of a forest unit that is actively engaged in the commercial growing of trees under a sound management program. Forestland is a specific property type defined in the N.C. constitution, distinct from real or motor vehicle property. PUV enrolled forestlands save significant amounts on property tax, or may even be exempt from taxation. The purpose of PUV and forestland tax classification is to encourage forest stewardship through owners adhering to sound forest management plans.

To initially qualify for PUV, the individual or entity must own 20 continuous acres of forestland. Other, smaller tracts can be added to PUV after this initial 20 acre parent tract is enrolled. The PUV enrolled property must be under a sound forest management plan. 

To determine further qualification and to obtain an application, please contact your county tax assessor. 

V. Timber Markets

NC Extension Forestry – Selling Timber

Forest lands are often managed for wildlife, water protection, and recreation. These lands can also typically be managed to produce revenue from timber sales, which can in turn finance the improvement of other natural resources. Ideally, forest management is environmentally friendly and profitable. 

For those interested in selling their timber, it pays to be informed. Timber sales often occur in a single transaction, but there are many factors that influence the sale price. A few examples are:

  • When and how the timber sale takes place
  • Age and quality of timber 
  • Forest management practices, past and present
  • Historic and current market value
  • Tree species

Post-harvest forest regeneration and other management costs should also be considered prior to timber sale. It is in the best interest of the forest land owner to represent their timber using this knowledge to maximize their financial and environmental returns. If you need assistance selling timber, Extension advises to consult first with a certified Consulting Forester. 

Read more:
First…See a Forester
Benefits of Using a Consulting Forester
NCFS Consulting Foresters

Contact Directory

N.C. Forest Service Montgomery County Office (All topics)
897 NC Hwy. 109
Troy, NC 27371
910-576-5481
Website
Directions: The office is located on 109 about half a mile north of Troy on your left. From the north, the office is just before coming into Troy. Google maps link

N.C. Department of Environmental Quality (Burn Bans and Permitting)
Fayetteville Regional Office
225 Green Street, Suite 714 
Fayetteville, NC 28301
910-433-3300
Website
Directions: Located in the Systel Building. Bring parking ticket to the DEQ office for validation, you do not need to pay. Google maps link. 

Montgomery Farm and Garden (Burn Permitting)
702 N Main St 
Troy, NC 27371
910-572-3990
Facebook Page

Jesse Wimberley (Prescribed Burn Training)
Sandhills Prescribed Burn Association Coordinator
(910) 603-1052 
jesse@sandhillspba.org
Website

Vickie Maness (Present Use Value – Montgomery County)
Tax Assessor, Montgomery County
Administration Bldg, Tax Department
102 East Spring Street, Floor 2
Troy, NC 27371
(910) 576-4311
Website

Katie Stovall (Forest Management Plans, Present Use Value)
Conservation Land Manager, Three Rivers Land Trust
204 East Innes St., Suite 120
Salisbury, NC 27205
katie@trlt.org
Website