Working Farm Protection Act

August 28, 2018

By Yvette DeBow-Salsedo

Conservation News
Farms for the Future

New Legislation allows state funding to be used to purchase additional restrictions on farmland to help keep farmland affordable.

New York State is the first to enact.

On August 2, Governor Cuomo signed the Working Farm Protection Act into law. Recently passed unanimously in the New York State Legislature, the Act makes farmland more accessible by making working farm easements permanently eligible for funding through the State’s Farmland Protection Implementation Grant (FPIG) program. Working farm easements include farmer ownership and affordability provisions that help keep protected farmland affordable and in the hands of farmers.

This is similar to the Peconic Land Trust’s enhanced easements that have been used on Long Island, through both donation since 2010 and Town purchase of development rights programs since 2014.

The Act was championed by the National Young Farmers Coalition (NYFC) and supported by New York Farm Bureau, American Farmland Trust and land trusts from around the state, including the Peconic Land Trust.

“On Long Island, we have witnessed firsthand the need to have multiple tools available to communities to protect their important agricultural resources for the next generation,” said Trust President John v.H. Halsey in the NYFC press release. “This legislation is an important addition to New York State’s impactful farmland protection programs. It helps both existing and future generations of farmers to have affordable access to prime agricultural soils that provide a wide-variety of agricultural products to New York families, including fresh, locally grown food.”

Read the full press release from the National Young Farmer’s Coalition >>>

Learn more about how the Trust is using enhanced easements to protect farmland for the future generations. >>>

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