ODA announces 2019 funding for Agriculture Easement Purchase Program

The Ohio Department of Agriculture announced that eight land trusts, four counties and 15 Soil and Water Conservation Districts will receive funding to help preserve farmland across the state. These organizations will receive allocations from the Clean Ohio Fund to select, close and monitor easements under the Local Agricultural Easement Purchase Program (LAEPP).

LAEPP sponsor organizations will accept applications from Ohio landowners interested in selling an agricultural easement on their farms. A total of nearly $8.5 million will be made available in this funding round. Local sponsors have been certified to accept applications in 34 counties. Interested landowners should contact the certified local sponsor in their county for application details.

The program allows landowners to voluntarily sell easements on their farms to the state of Ohio. The easement requires the farm remain permanently in agriculture production. Selected farms must be 40 acres or more, actively engaged in farming, participate in the Current Agricultural Use Valuation program, demonstrate good stewardship of the land, have the support of their local government and not lay directly in the path of development. Landowners may use the proceeds of the easement in any way they wish, but most reinvest it in their farm operations.

Funding for the program is derived from the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund, approved by voters in 2008. When combined with easements from all programs, 449 family farms in 59 counties have collectively preserved more than 73,500 acres in agricultural production. For more information on Ohio’s farmland preservation effort visit: www.agri.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/oda/programs/farmland-preservation-office.

Check Also

Fairs are finding a way

By Matt Reese, Dusty Sonnenberg, Kolt Buchenroth, and Dale Minyo After planning, re-planning, and changing …


  1. Unfortunately Marion County will not receive any of the $8.5 million tax supported dollars this year for farmland preservation. For a second year in a row farmland preservation will not continue in Marion County. ODA has a backlog of accepted applicants from years back to 2016 that they have yet to process. Our local sponsor, Marion County Soik and Water cannot continue to put in time and resources until the state pays the farmers already accepted, of which Soul and Water gets 3% to cover their costs in sponsoring farmland preservation in Marion County. How unfortunate!

  2. The very same thing has happened for Ashland County. Hopefully some of this will change with a new administration in Columbus. My father has been accepted and continues to be told he is receiving it but nothing seems to happen. He has several farms in this program and has been an advocate for the program but is becoming less of an advocate as time goes by. His land trust has decided this is the last time they will sponsor a property for this program. Very sad ! My father was very grateful for the program a few years ago as the rover pipeline had planned to come through two of his protected farms. Because they were in this program the state and his land trust were able to change the route and the pipeline had to go around his protected farms. He was very grateful. He wants to continue to put more of his acres in this program for this reason but when the state keeps dragging on and not taking care of business that is now almost 3 years old it gets very discouraging. Hopefully something changes and we can continue this great program the way it was intended

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *