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Informational Resource
Participate in DNR's Timber Sales Planning Process

The Department of Natural Resources' timber sale planning process is very opaque, and DNR does not do a good job informing the public about how they can be involved in the process. This page is meant to serve as a resource for members of the public who want to make their voices heard.

1 / Early Timber Sale Planning

The DNR’s regional offices begin planning timber sales years before they are scheduled to be auctioned, but DNR does not provide the public with information about the sales until months before auction. Click here to find out which DNR region you are located in. The regional office will often conceive of a timber sale 5–10 years prior to its auction but will only begin serious planning 1-2 years prior to the proposed auction date. This is when the DNR will begin investing in surveys for the area. The only way to learn about timber sales in the early planning process is to submit a public disclosure request for data from the DNR. Public disclosure requests can be emailed to the DNR at and often involve a small fee. You can ask for data on planned timber sales, stand age, unstable slopes etc.

2 / Forest Practice Application

After DNR has laid out a timber sale, the DNR’s regional office will submit a Forest Practices Application to be reviewed by the regulatory side of DNR. At this point the sale will be referred to by its FPA Number. As a member of the public you can sign up to receive daily emails from DNR's Forest Practices Application Review System (FPARS) which includes all Forest Practices Applications across the state, both DNR and private. It is often hard to sort through the email notifications so you can also view FPAs under review by DNR on their Forest Practices Application Mapping Tool. To view Forest Practices Applications, both those that are active and those that are under review: 1) Click on “themes.” 2) Select "base resource" in the table of contents. 3) Click "Forest Practices Applications." 4) Check the box “FPA - All Harvest by Decision/Status.” You can then navigate to your area of interest and see all active and proposed Forest Practices Applications.

3 / SEPA Public Comment Period

After the FPA for a timber sale is approved, DNR will open a two week public comment period for the timber sale. The timber sale will be posted on the DNR’s website under the region that it is located in, and the "cover memo" will include a due date for public comments. If you are interested in being informed about every timber sale going through the SEPA process, you can send an email to and ask to be added to the list to receive all SEPA notifications. This is also the email that you can address public comments to during the two week comment period. After this comment period the DNR will issue a “Notice a Final Determination” (NFD) for a timber sale. If the NFD retains DNR's original Determination of Non-Significance (DNS) then the timber sale will be allowed to proceed.

4 / Board of Natural Resources

After a timber sale has gone through the SEPA process and DNR's Determination of Non-Significance has been retained, the DNR will present the timber sale to the Board of Natural Resources (BNR) for approval. The Board of Natural Resources is a six-member board made up of individuals representing the beneficiaries of DNR logging. This includes a representative from Washington State University, the University of Washington, and the Washington Association of Counties, as well as the Commissioner of Public Lands, a Representative of the Governor and the Superintendent of Public Instruction. A timber sale will be presented to the Board of Natural Resources on the first Tuesday of the month before its auction date. (If a timber sale is scheduled for auction in May, it will be presented to the BNR on the first Tuesday in April.) DNR publishes a list of proposed timber sales a week or two before the next BNR meeting. This information, along with instructions for registering to give public testimony in person or via Zoom, will be posted on this page. Members of the public can also send comments via email to During the meeting the board will hear public comment, vote on DNR business and eventually vote to approve proposed timber sales. The meetings take place at the DNR building in Olympia and start at 9am.

5 / Timber Auction

The month after a timber sale is approved for auction by the Board of Natural Resources, it will be auctioned. Members of the public can attend the auction via Microsoft Teams and information about timber sale auctions are posted here. To join the auction via Teams, navigate to the month on the side bar and click "Links to [month – year] Teams Auctions.” After a timber sale is auctioned, the logging company that wins the bid will typically have two years to complete the logging.

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