The Delaware Forest Service’s urban and community forestry program has awarded $58,409 in grants to 22 municipalities, homeowners associations and nonprofits to fund planting and management projects to improve tree canopy on public lands and open space in the first state.

During the past 10 years, the program has funded more than $1 million in community-based tree projects in Delaware.

Funded by the U.S. Forest Service, Delaware’s Urban and Community Grant Program is open to all municipalities, community associations and certified 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations within the state of Delaware. Funds can only be utilized on public property owned by the municipality, HOA or nonprofit organization. Grants can range from a minimum of $500 to a maximum of $5,000 in one of two project categories: tree planting or tree management.

Applications require a 50-50 cost-share match in either cash or in-kind services within program guidelines. Applications were limited to one project in one project category and were judged on a competitive basis by a grant committee of the Delaware Urban and Community Forestry Council.

Eligible projects must be performed on public lands within the community. Priority is given to first time applicants, Tree City USA’s, Tree Friendly Communities and applicants that have passed an Urban Tree Canopy Goal Resolution — only applies to municipalities.

Applications for the next round of grants will be available early in 2018.

For information, call 698-4578 or email Kesha.Braunskill@state.de.us.