Suffolk County’s visionary Farmland Preservation Program has just achieved a triumph.The state’s Appellate Division last month rejected a ruling by a state Supreme Court justice in 2016 that hamstrung the program.
Conceived by County Executive John V. N. Klein, the program, begun in 1974, is based on the brilliant and then novel idea of purchasing development rights. Farmers are paid the difference between the value of their land in agriculture and what they could get for it if they sold it to a developer. In return, the land is kept in agriculture in perpetuity. (more…)