Agricultural & Farmland Protection Board
- Liz Alexander, Chair
- Tanya McGee, Planning Advisor
- Michael Hanlon
- Eugene Stowe
- Thomas Rhodes
- James Bush
- Mark Watts
- Tom Pipher
- John Pastrick
- Ken Bush
- Theresa Murdock
The New York State (NYS) Constitution directs the State Legislature to protect agricultural lands, which the State and its counties have done together since the implementation of Article 25AA of the Agriculture and Markets Law in 1971. This law authorizes the preservation and protection of agricultural lands and products. Section 302 of that Law provides for the establishment of an Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board (the "Board") by the County Legislature. In Chemung County, the Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board's powers and duties include:
- Advise the county legislative body on matters related to the proposed establishment, modification, continuation, or termination of any state-certified Article 25AA agricultural district (Ag District FAQ).
- Review notice of intent filings (pursuant to Article 25AA) and make findings and recommendations on the potential impacts of governmental actions involving lands in state-certified Article 25AA agricultural districts.
- At the request of one or more owners of land used in agricultural production, review the land classification established by the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets for such land and recommend revisions the specific classification to the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets.
Consolidated Agricultural District Certified by the New York State
Chemung County has one Consolidated Agricultural District certified by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets that encompasses approximately 40,678 acres. Property owners may apply to have land included within the Agricultural District to conserve and protect agricultural lands as valued natural resources and open space, and to encourage the improvement of agricultural lands for the production of food and other agricultural products. The Board and County Legislature undertake a comprehensive review of each district every eight years, at which time properties may be added or deleted from the district. In addition, Chemung County has an open enrollment period every November when a property owner can apply for inclusion in a district. Note that in December 2017, the Chemung County Legislature voted to consolidate the five agricultural districts into one Consolidated District, the "Chemung County Agricultural District."
Agricultural & Farmland Protection Plan
Section 324 of Article 25AA provides for the development of an Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan. The Chemung County Legislature adopted the Chemung County Agricultural Economic Development Plan (the "Plan") by Resolution Number 11-223 on April 11, 2011. The Plan promotes the preservation of agricultural land use while encouraging and strengthening agricultural development in the county. The Plan also provides for the creation of an Agricultural Resource Group, a subcommittee that is charged with implementing the plan's recommendations.