PLATTSBURGH — The Clinton County Planning Department is now accepting applications for state funding for the purchase of development rights on all or a portion of agricultural property.
New York state recently announced the availability of 2014 funding for the state's Farmland Protection Implementation Program.
It includes funding for the purchase of development rights for the protection of farmland.
The Clinton County Planning Department, on behalf of the Clinton County Farmland Protection Board, administers the effort to collect individual applications from interested farm landowners.
The board then reviews the applications and submits the highest-rated ones to the state.
Since 2004, Clinton County has received grant awards under this program that protect five farms totaling 4,077 acres.
The Purchase of Development Rights Program (also called the PDR Program) involves the sale of development rights on farmland in exchange for monetary compensation.
Under the program, the landowner gives up, forever, the ability to sell or develop their property for any purpose other than agriculture (with some minor exceptions).
The landowner will still own the land and can continue to farm the property, but all future use of it will be limited to agriculture.
In exchange, the owner selected under the program would receive funding from the state for about 87.5 percent of the value of the development rights (in past years, the program was capped at 75 percent).
Anyone who would like more or information or wants to apply may attend a public information meeting sponsored by the Planning Department for all farm landowners who are potentially interested in participating.
The meeting is set for 2 p.m. Tuesday, June 17, in the Cornell Cooperative Extension/Soil and Water Conservation District conference room at 6064 Route 22, Plattsburgh.
The Planning Department will distribute applications that must be completed by the landowners and returned in order to be considered under the program.
The deadline to return applications to the Planning Department is 4 p.m. Thursday, June 26.