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Forest Practices Act - Enforcement
How to Request a Penalty Reduction (Mitigation)
You may request a reduction of the penalties (mitigation), either as part of your request for a hearing or as a separate issue. Mitigation can be requested:
  1. For Economic/Financial Reasons – If you want the Department of Forestry to consider your economic and financial condition, you must do so in a written request for mitigation . The burden of presenting evidence of your economic and financial condition is on YOU. Doing so is not an admission that the violation has occurred or that you are responsible for the violation.
     
  2. Based on Repair Costs – You may request that the costs of the repairs ordered by the State Forester be considered in reducing your penalty. This request must be received in writing within 20 days from the date of service of the civil penalty (see #1 under "Requesting a Hearing"). You may present evidence of the costs without any prejudice to your claims regarding the violation or your responsibility.
 
Because of a desire to substitute a higher level of repair or to substitute a suitable restoration or enhancement project for all or part of the civil penalty – The Board of Forestry is interested in encouraging landowners and operators to mitigate the damage caused by violations of resource protection rules. This can be done by investing in enhancement of the resources protected by the Forest Practices Act. These resources include air quality, water, soil productivity, fish, wildlife and scenic resources.
 
The State Forester is authorized by the Board of Forestry to reduce your civil penalty in exchange for your commitment to perform one or more of the following resource enhancement projects:
  • Planting a higher tree density per acre in a set timeline for a reforestation violation
  • Reconstructing, relocating or vacating roads that present a higher risk to water quality than if they had been located and designed to current forest practice rule standards
  • Restoring or enhancing upstream/downstream fish passage, including replacing crossing structures not designed to current forest practice rule standards
  • Restoring or enhancing fish habitat by placing large woody debris or other structures in or adjacent to stream channels
  • Retaining conifers adjacent to streams to supplement current forest practice rule requirements that are consistent with forest health considerations
  • Restoring or enhancing habitat for threatened and endangered species or other wildlife habitat
  • Restoring or enhancing the protection of salmonid production areas
  • Controlling noxious weeds or exotic species
  • Reducing the risk of catastrophic fire or insect and disease damage
 
In addition, you may also agree to donate all or an agreed-upon portion of the penalty to a local watershed council or other program that does resource enhancement projects.   (These mitigation projects may be discussed and agreed-upon during a collaborative dispute resolution process, as well.)
 
A request for mitigation must be made in writing to:  
 
State Forester
Attn: Civil Penalty Administrator
2600 State Street
Salem, OR 97310
 
The State Forester must receive the request for mitigation within 20 days from the date of service of the notice of civil penalty (see #1 under "Requesting a Hearing").
 
IMPORTANT: Even if you request a penalty reduction, you must also request a hearing or the notice of civil penalty will become final by default.

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