Agriculture & Markets - Agricultural and Farmland Protection Programs - Statement of legislative findings and intent

Published: 2018-11-02

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§ 321. Statement of legislative findings and intent. It is hereby
found and declared that agricultural lands are irreplaceable state
assets. In an effort to maintain the economic viability, and
environmental and landscape preservation values associated with
agriculture, the state must explore ways to sustain the state's valuable
farm economy and to protect farm operations and the land base associated
with it. External pressures on farm stability such as population growth
in non-metropolitan areas, lack of access to affordable farmland, and
public infrastructure development pose a significant threat to farm
operations, yet are the pressures over which farmers have the least
control. Local initiatives in agricultural protection policy,
facilitated by the agricultural districts program established in article
twenty-five-AA of this chapter, have proved effective as a basic step in
addressing these pressures. In an effort to encourage further
development of agricultural and farmland protection programs, and to
recognize both the crucial role that local government plays in
developing these strategies, plus the state constitutional directive to
the legislature to provide for the protection of agricultural lands, it
is therefore declared the policy of the state to promote local
initiatives for agricultural and farmland protection.