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The original item was published from 1/25/2021 1:08:53 PM to 1/25/2021 1:11:28 PM.

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Posted on: January 26, 2021

[ARCHIVED] 10,000 Acres of Farmland Permanently Preserved in Montco!

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We are pleased to share the achievement of a major milestone for the Montgomery County Agricultural Land Preservation Program—the permanent preservation of 10,000 acres of farmland in Montgomery County. (Check out the celebratory video!) The program, which celebrated its 30th anniversary last year, has preserved 177 farms, for a combined total of 10,196 acres—a remarkable achievement for a suburban county in the Philadelphia region. These farms account for 25 percent of all farms in the county. The program, part of a statewide program, has worked to support and preserve productive farms in Montco. In addition to supporting farmers and the heritage of farming, these properties also provide valuable open space and scenic vistas. Congratulations and thank you to all of the participating farm owners and our partners who have helped to achieve this accomplishment.

The farmland preservation program purchases agricultural easements on productive farms in Montgomery County. When the easement is purchased, the owner keeps the land, but the land must remain in farming in perpetuity. The farmer may sell the land, but the new owner must continue to grow productive crops or pasture on it. Funding for the program comes from the county and state and, in some cases, the municipality. The remainder of the funding comes from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania through cigarette taxes, the Environmental Stewardship Fund, and other sources.

Applying to the program is voluntary. The application period for the current cycle of the program is open through February 1, 2021. For information, contact Stephen Zbyszinski at (610) 278-5960.