Kathmandu– Every community forest consumer group has to provide 10% of income to the local level from now onward.
The Law, Justice and Human Rights Committee of the House of Representatives has made a provision in the amended Local Government Operation Act-2074 that the community forest should provide 10% of income to the local level. The provision has already been endorsed from the amendment committee.
Though the government had taken ahead a proposal stressing that the community forest should provide 25% of income to the local level, the committee rejected the proposal.
“The community forest has been doing good works in the field of conservation. The income of forest should be spent in the same area,” committee Chairman Krishna Bhakta Pokharel said, adding,” That is why 25% has been slashed to 10 %.”
Similarly, according to the new system, the community forests should prepare their plan for the sale and use of forest production and should provide to the local level. However, the community forest has been providing 15 % of income to the federal government.
Federation of Community Forest Users Nepal (FECOFUN) treasurer Bharati Pathak said that all the three layers of government should divide 15% income the community forests have been providing to the federal government.
“Community forest is service oriented. It has been doing the works of conservation,” Pathak said.
She said that the community forest consumer groups are spending 25 % of income for the development of forest, 40 % for development and 35 % for the development of enterprise.
Though the amendment proposal has been endorsed from the committee, it will be implemented as the law once the House of Representatives and National Assembly endorses it.
Although the forest covers 6,230,537 hectares of land in the country, the community forest consumers groups have been protecting 2,237,670 hectares of land. There are 22,626 community forests in 77 districts.