West Virginia is 79 percent timberland (12.5 million acres). The majority of this land is owned by small private landowners. This living and growing renewable resource has a major influence on our environment and supports an industry which is growing in both jobs and economic value.
The State of West Virginia recognizes the value of managing this resource. Through proper management, the potential losses to wildfire, insect, disease and exploitation can be reduced. This tax incentive approach was enacted to encourage landowners to actively manage their forest land thereby increasing the amount and quality of the resource.
Owners of timberland in excess of 10 acres can enter into an agreement with the West Virginia Division of Forestry and obtain Managed Timberland status for the property, provided that the property is not part of any subdivision that was approved or exempted by the planning commission.
This exemption is a tax incentive program whose contract is due to the State by July 1 of each year and is designed for people who want to manage their woodland. The Division of Forestry and State Tax Department determine the value of managed timberland tracts. It is actually a contract that is entered into with the Division of Forestry and reduces the price per acre on woodland. Forms and information for the program are available in the assessors office.