Here's a hypothetical question (hopefully). If an ash stand no longer has sufficient density to qualify for the 480a program following ash borer invasion, and if that stand is necessary for having more than 50 acres for the program, what happens? Does the owner incur the tax penalties for removal from the program even if it wasn't voluntary? Anyone who has experience with this and is willing to share, it will be much appreciated.

Views: 200

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I don't live in New York State, but researching forest tax laws is a bit of a hobby of mine, so I took the time to look up the 480a program.  It appears that density can be measured in one of two ways.  The first, is basal area of the stand, which would generally be measured from samples of mature trees (your ash trees), but stocking can also be measured based on trees/acre, which can include seedlings over one foot in height.  If the total number of non-ash mature trees and advance regeneration is greater than 500 trees/acre, then it doesn't look like you would have a problem at all.

I don't know the particulars (either of your particular property or the laws in general) well enough to give definite advice, but it sounds like you could encourage seedling growth for the next few years, and then harvest the ash trees once you have enough growth to continue to qualify as forestland over that area.

Here's the document that I read about the 480a program:

Obviously, this is just brainstorming.  Maybe someone who has experience with New York property tax law can provide a better answer.

Thanks for taking the time to respond. I appreciate it! My understanding is similar to yours. In the particulars of my stand, there are areas with plenty of maple saplings. There are however some sections with little or no ingrowth of saplings. If the ash borer population stays away another ten years, the question will likely be academic for me. The issue is that it draws closer each year and its arrival is probably sooner than later. My stand is almost totally small to medium ash poles, so a harvest is not financially viable. Meantime I am thinning the ash wherever the maple are appearing and planting acorns and walnuts where there are already spaces. Whether my stand is disqualified or not will probably be a close call in terms of staying above 50 acres of eligible acres.If you have any further thoughts, please share. thanks, again.

I can't think of much else you could do that you aren't already.  The one thing I might try is to do a formal survey of the regeneration.  You say you have plenty of saplings in some parts of the stand, but none in others.  The way I understand it, for the purposes of tax assessment, all you would need is for the areas with saplings, and the areas without, to average out to more than 500 stems per acre.  Maybe next summer, you can set up a few sample plots, yourself, to see if that would be the case.  If your survey comes close to the required amount or exceeds it, you could then hire a forester to do his own survey and sign off on the results.  Of course, I am assuming that the tax savings that you are getting through 480a are worth some time and monetary expense, and from what I have read, that can be a false assumption.

I wish you luck with your forest,


Full Disclosure:  Anything you have read above is the advice of a high school student who has done a fair bit of reading on forest management and wishes to pursue it as a career, but has no formal education or job experience, and certainly no licensing to justify giving this advice.  Your question was certainly an interesting study for me, and hopefully I have been helpful, but take anything I say with that grain of salt.

Hello, Ely: Those "500 stems" are required to be evenly distributed. And that is the issue.

My thanks for your input and my admiration for studying up on this difficult and sometimes legalistic issue. Keep it up!




How long do brush cutter blades work?

Started by Joanne Vaughn in Woodlot Management on Monday. 0 Replies

I dunno maybe it's because time flies when it's multiflora rose and buckthorns that are getting whacked. It seems that these blades are needing retirement after 8 or so hours.   Is this typical for this type of material. WIde range of material but…Continue

Tags: cutter, brush

Nitrogen fixing bacteria for Alder trees

Started by Joanne Vaughn in Woodlot Management. Last reply by Joanne Vaughn on Friday. 7 Replies

I am thinking of starting some alder trees from seed for planting into an area that does not and has not hosted alders.  How can I gain the nitrogen fixing bacteria for inoculation of the roots ?  Continue

Seeking advice on controlling oriental bittersweet

Started by Kristen Whitbeck in Woodlot Management. Last reply by Lew Ward Apr 15. 2 Replies

A student in my silviculture class is seeking relayed the scenario below. If anyone has any tips or tricks I will gladly pass them along. Thanks in advance!"Oriental bittersweet is choking out my mature white pine trees and my mature apple trees.…Continue

Tags: bittersweet, Oriental

Are Gall's a reason to cull Hickory trees?

Started by Thomas Wilson in Forest Health. Last reply by Ron Goodger Apr 7. 8 Replies

I'll take a photo, but in the meantime....I have a lot of bitternut hickory and some shagbark as well.  I haven't yet noticed any on the shagbark, but about half of the bitternut have gall's.  They get up to about 3 inches in diameter.  Some tree's…Continue

Removal of grass around seedlings in pasture

Started by Joanne Vaughn in Woodlot Management. Last reply by Peter Smallidge Mar 19. 11 Replies

Even after the timely discussion of "green lie" this week, I am still unsure of the best method to eliminate grassy vegetation around the pine, cedar and oak seedlings we are putting in this spring. I feel this is very important because we lost a…Continue

Saving Trees With Tree-Eating Mushrooms

Started by Lew Ward in Forest Health Feb 27. 0 Replies

Saving Trees With Tree-Eating MushroomsControl of Amellaria Shoe-string Rot Fungus

Electric Fencing

Started by Carl DuPoldt in Agroforestry Jan 21. 0 Replies

Electric Deer Fence WorkshopLuke Freeman hosted a workshop at the incubator farm in Fayetteville, AR to demonstrate the use of the solar-powered electric deer fence. Luke built the fence with help from Extension specialist Kenny Simon and County…Continue

Beech control with triclopyr versus glyphosate

Started by Peter Smallidge in Woodlot Management. Last reply by Joanne Vaughn Nov 20, 2019. 3 Replies

[I'm pasting from a recent email thread]Question - I'm working on a couple beech regen and mid story control projects.   I have been using Garlon 4 in oil.   Works good, but sometimes I want it to move through the roots and the Garlon doesn't do…Continue



© 2020   Created by Peter Smallidge.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service