Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board
The principal responsibility of the Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board is to review land owner applications for inclusion in the County's Agricultural District.
The Agricultural District provides agricultural lands with a number of benefits and protections without burdening a landowner with additional restrictions. The district is comprised of 19,673 acres or approximately 13% of the County’s total land area (see map). The goal of the Agricultural District is to maintain a viable agricultural industry within the County and we encourage local farmers and growers to consider enrolling their property.
Annual 30-Day Review
The Schenectady County Legislature has established the month of December as the annual 30-day period within which a land owner may submit an application to include viable agricultural land within the County Agricultural District. A landowner who wishes to include land within the Agricultural District must submit the Agricultural District Review Application/Worksheet to the Schenectady County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board.
The forms can be submitted to:
Schenectady County Department of Economic Development and Planning,
107 Nott Terrace, Suite 303,
Schenectady, NY 12308
Application forms can be accessed by the above link or obtained by contacting the Department of Economic Development and Planning at 386-2225.
After the thirty day review period is completed, applications will be reviewed by the County’s Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board. A public hearing will be held by the County Legislature and a final vote taken by the Legislature to include additional parcels in the Agricultural District.
The Schenectady County Agricultural District was created in 1988 and must be reviewed and recertified by the NYS Department of Agriculture and Markets every eight years. The eight-year review process presents an opportunity to analyze the County's agricultural base and offers the County Legislature the opportunity to alter the boundaries of the district in recognition of changing land uses. During the review landowners can decide if they want their property to remain in the District, or be removed or added. Owners of property within the Agricultural District receive a mailed written notice of review. The primary goal of the review is to ensure that the agricultural district consists predominantly of viable agricultural land.
More information on Agricultural Districts can be obtained from the NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets web site.