The Frederick Agricultural Land Preservation Program has opened up an application cycle for the Frederick County Critical Farms Program. The Critical Farms Program assists full-time farmers in purchasing new farmland and also works to preserve the land.
Since the county program began in 1994, it has assisted 44 farmers in acquiring farms and preserved more than 5,560 acres of farmland. The program was created to help farmers compete with non-farm buyers who oftentimes have resources not available to farmers and therefore are in a more competitive position to buy farmland. Through the program, the county pays the farm buyer for an option to acquire an easement. The option agreement requires the new farm owner to make application to either the state easement program and/or other governmental land preservation programs within seven years.
Applications will be accepted in the office of the Division of Planning & Permitting until 4 p.m., Friday, May 31, 2019.