The California Forest Taxation Reform Act of 1976 sets forth
procedures for Counties to protect viable
timberlands and offers a tax break to property owners
for keeping their property in timber production. The
mechanism used by local governments for this process is zoning.
The Timber Production Zone (TPZ) was established for
property assessed for the growing and harvesting of trees; and contains
regulations for the use of timber property, including divisions.
State law provides specific regulations for the division
of timberlands, including the need for property
owners to submit a Joint Timber Management Plan for project
approval. The purpose of the Joint Timber
Management Plan (JTMP) is to provide a management guide
for the harvesting of timber for all parcels
directly affected by subdivision of land.
WHEN ARE JTMP's NECESSARY?
State law requires property owners to submit a JTMP for
all land divisions which reduces parcels zoned
TPZ below 160 acres (this includes Lot Line Adjustments).
The County must then review and approve the JTMP
before the subdivision of land can be approved. If you are unsure
whether your project will require a JTMP, please contact Planning staff
for a preliminary project review.
WHO PREPARES A JTMP?
A JTMP must be prepared by a Registered Professional
Forester (a list of qualified foresters is available at the
front counter in the Planning Division upon request).
CONTENTS OF A JTMP
The JTMP includes both a Management Plan and a Management
The Management Plan is the legal document that is recorded
with the deed.
his document identifies access, rights-of-ways, and stocking
requirements as regulated by State law.
The Management Guide is the descriptive document that
describes the property and outlines the
management opportunities to the land owner. The
Management Guide includes information such as: a
description of the property, existing and proposed
access, a timber inventory and stocking plan, and the
proposed Timber Management Plan. This document
can be a vital educational tool that introduces the
landowner to intensive forest management.
Standards for a JTMP have been documented and are available
at the Planning Division upon request.
WHO REVIEWS AND APPROVES THE
The Forestry Review Committee reviews and approves recommendations
to the Board of Supervisors who make the final
decision on the JTMP.
The Forestry Review Committee consists of seven Registered
Professional Foresters who are appointed by the
Board of Supervisors, and two non-voting members (the Planning Director
and the Assessor or their designees). The Committee meets once a
month and the registered forester who prepared the JTMP and the property
owner are encouraged to attend.
Once the Forestry Review Committee has reviewed for the
JTMP conformance with State law, the item will be scheduled for a public
hearing before the Board of Supervisors. The Board of Supervisors
considers the recommendations of the Forestry Review Committee and the
public testimony received before taking action on the JTMP. The Board
of Supervisors' decisions are final.
PLEASE NOTE: Once a JTMP is received by
staff, the processing time is approximately 2-3 months prior to a decision
being made on the project.