GrowSmart Maine supports two bills on farmland protection

Planning for Ag provides an opportunity to prioritize farmland protection and farm viability as essential smart growth outcomes, as we consider where to focus our lobbying efforts.  GrowSmart Maine will support two bills that affirm municipal and property owner actions to protect productive farmland and conserve open space.

LD 54  An Act to Require Compliance with Natural or Agricultural Resource Protection Ordinances, sponsored by Representative Lee of Auburn, requires that housing allowed under municipal zoning ordinances and built after October 1, 2023 comply with municipal ordinances designed to protect natural and agricultural resources adopted before April 27, 2022.

LD 596  An Act to Exempt Certain Conservation Lots from Municipal Subdivision Review, sponsored Senator Pierce of Cumberland, would ensure that the division of a parcel of land does not create a subdivision lot  if the transferred interest is to be permanently held for one or more of the following conservation purposes:

– retaining or protecting the natural, scenic or open space values of the land;

– ensuring the availability of the land for agricultural, forest, recreational or open space use;

– protecting natural resources; and

– maintaining or enhancing air quality or water quality.