The Montgomery County Farmland Preservation Program purchases agricultural easements on productive farms in Montgomery County. When the easement is sold, the owner keeps the land but no longer has the right to build non-agricultural buildings. The land must remain in farming in perpetuity. The farmer may sell the land, but the new owner must continue to grow productive crops or pasture on it. Applying to the program is voluntary.
Program Status As of June 2016, there are 157 farms preserved in Montgomery County under the farmland preservation program. These farms total 9,230 acres. In Pennsylvania there are 4,977 preserved farms in 58 participating counties; 522,545 acres total. Application material is available below and in the Montgomery County Planning Commission office.
Funding Funding for the program comes from both the county and state, and sometimes, the municipality. The Montgomery County Commissioners may allocate money each year to preserve farms in Montgomery County. The remainder of the funding comes from the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania through cigarette taxes, the Environmental Stewardship Fund, and other sources. A township or borough may contribute money to preserve a farm within its own boundaries.