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Starting Up a County/Township Program

Grant applications are to be submitted by eligible local units of government. For a local unit of government to qualify, a county or township must have zoning authority, covered under a master plan that includes farmland preservation, passed a Purchase of Development Rights Ordinance, and created a plan for monitoring conservation easements.

Comprehensive Land Use Plan
Comprehensive land use plan that includes a plan for agricultural preservation. This plan has to have been prepared in the last ten years and updated within the past five years. This comprehensive land use plan must contain an agricultural preservation component with the following included:
    • The areas included for agricultural preservation are clearly depicted on the future land use map
    • A description of how and why the preservation area was selected
         o Possibly give examples here?
    • Goals for farmland preservation
         o Possibly give examples here?
    • Language indicating why farmland should be preserved in the community (cost of services studies, economic benefit to the community, etc. )
    • Text describing the strategies intended to be used in order to preserve the agricultural land, including the PDR but should include other techniques
Included here is a template for a Comprehensive Land Use Plan.

Adopting PDR Ordinance
They have adopted a development rights ordinance providing for a PDR program in accordance with the applicable zoning act (county, township, or city and village) that contains the following:
    • A method to establish the price to be paid for development rights which may include an appraisal, bidding, or formula-based process.
    • An application procedure
         o insert template
    • Criteria for a farmland parcel selection-scoring system
         o insert template

Monitoring Conservation Easement Plan
A monitoring and enforcement plan for the farmland conservation easements has been established.