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Farmland Preservation Tools

Purchase of Development Rights (PDR) Programs

Purchase of development rights (PDR) programs are designed to compensate landowners who voluntarily place an agricultural conservation easement on their property.  A conservation easement is a deed restriction designed to protect a specific conservation purpose.

Information on established local PDR programs is listed below. Virginia localities interested in developing a PDR program should contact the Office of Farmland Preservation.

Virginia PDR Programs

Albemarle County
Website
Program ordinance 

Nelson County
Program resolution

Chesapeake (City)
Program ordinance

New Kent County
Program ordinance

Clarke County
Website

Northampton County
Website
Program ordinance

Culpeper County
Program ordinance

Rappahannock County
Contact locality for more information

Cumberland County
Program ordinance

Rockbridge County
Contact locality for more information

Fauquier County
Website
 

Shenandoah County
Website
Program ordinance

Franklin County
Program ordinance

Spotsylvania County
Program ordinance

Frederick County
Website

Stafford County
Website

Goochland County
Program resolution

Virginia Beach (City)
Website
Program ordinance

Isle of Wight County
Website
Program ordinance

Washington County
Program ordinance

James City County
Website

 

Recent and Upcoming PDR Matching Funding Opportunities

The Office of Farmland Preservation (OFP) has approximately $308,076 in funding available for the FY 2018 allocation round.

The FY 2018 allocation round opened on September 18, 2017 and closes on October 27, 2017. The following two (2) completed forms were required to be submitted by October 27, 2017 by each eligible locality:

Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) Programs

The Code of Virginia authorizes localities to establish programs that transfer the development rights from a “sending” property (property that the locality is trying to protect) to one or more “receiving” properties (properties where the locality is trying to encourage development). Please see the information below for more information.

Virginia TDR Programs

Frederick County
Website
Program ordinance

Stafford County
Program ordinance

Agricultural and Forestal Districts

The Code of Virginia authorizes localities to adopt districts designed to protect working farm and forestland. These agricultural and forestal districts are voluntary agreements between landowners and the locality, and offer benefits to landowners that agree to keep their land in its current use for a period of four to 10 years. Localities are required by the Code of Virginia to provide the VDACS Commissioner with a copy of the ordinance for new agricultural and forestal districts, and any changes that are made to these districts.

Use Value Assessment

The Code of Virginia allows localities to assess land that meets certain eligibility requirements at its current use value and not at its fair market value when determining local property taxes. The four categories for use value assessment are agricultural, horticultural, forestry and open space. Suggested tax rates for each of these categories are provided to localities by the State Land Evaluation and Advisory Council (SLEAC). For more information on the use value assessment program and SLEAC, please click here.

Conservation Easement Donation

There are options for landowners interested in donating a conservation easement on their property. Please contact the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation for more information.

Contact
Andy Sorrell, AICP
VDACS Office of Farmland Preservation
804.786.1906
andrew.sorrell@vdacs.virginia.gov


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