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ODA Announces First Farmland Preservation Commitment of 2023

Bob and Betty Jo Lill (Courtesy of Marion Soil and Water Conservation District)

More Ohio farmland will remain Ohio farmland. The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) is proud to announce 96.57 acres have been added to the Farmland Preservation Program. Bob Lill in Marion County becomes the 1st Ohio farmer to join the program in 2023. 

Agricultural land is a key part of Ohio’s landscape. Preserving this land is essential. An agricultural easement in Farmland Preservation is a voluntary agreement between the landowner and ODA, where the landowner agrees to perpetually maintain the land predominately in agricultural use. In exchange, the landowner is either compensated or may be entitled to a tax deduction.
In partnership with ODA, local sponsor Marion Soil and Water Conservation District played a significant role in securing this agreement.

Since the Office of Farmland Preservation began in 1998, 681 farms totaling 103,041.42 acres have entered into agreements. This enables Ohio to continually be a top producer, aiding not just Ohioans, but all Americans. 

Funds from the purchase of these easements are invested in the local economy by the landowners who use them by expanding their farming operations, purchasing new equipment, reducing debt, adding conservation practices, planning for retirement, sending their children to college or for other purposes. When the state purchases a farmland easement, the proceeds are plowed into Ohio’s economy and our agriculture industry is preserved for future generations.