Gov. McAuliffe announces more than $1 Million in farmland preservation grants

Gov. Terry McAuliffe announced on Tuesday the recipients of fiscal year 2014 farmland preservation grants.  Eight localities have been awarded just over $1,058,000 from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS).  Localities must use the grant monies to preserve farmland within their boundaries through local Purchase of Development Rights (PDR) programs. PDR programs compensate landowners who work with localities to preserve their land permanently by voluntarily placing a perpetual conservation easement on it.

farm-droughtVDACS allocated almost $149,678.46 each to the counties of Albemarle, Clarke, Fauquier, Isle of Wight, James City, and Stafford, as well as the City of Virginia Beach.  Rappahannock County will receive an $11,000 grant.  These allocations total a little more than $1,058,000, bringing the total allocation of state matching funds to $8.68 million since 2008, when PDR funds were first distributed.

Speaking about the farmland preservation grants, Governor McAuliffe said, “Today’s announcement, which will be the first of many, highlights my administration’s goal of conserving Virginia’s working lands, an important component of land preservation.  These grants are the first step toward my administration’s goal of conserving 400,000 acres of open space and working lands across Virginia. I applaud the commitment of my predecessors and the General Assembly to land preservation, and I look forward to building on the successes they have achieved over the last eight years.”

Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Todd Haymore added, “Adequate and accessible working lands are the foundation of agriculture and forestry, Virginia’s largest industries.  Local governments receiving these funds will be able to use them alongside their dedicated local support, creating new opportunities to preserve working farmland, produce goods for purchase, create jobs, generate tax revenue, and protect our precious natural resources.  I look forward to working with Governor McAuliffe, Natural Resources Secretary Molly Ward, localities, and landowners during the next four years to preserve as many working land acres as possible”

This is the seventh time that the Commonwealth has provided state matching funds for certified local PDR programs.  Of the 22 local PDR programs in Virginia, 18 have received local funding over the past few years. To date, more than 6,700 acres on 49 farms in 12 localities have been permanently protected in part with $6 million of these funds.  Additional easements are expected to close using the remaining funds over the next two years.  Future new appropriations will help preserve additional working lands as well.

Localities interested in future rounds of grant applications for PDR matching funds should contact the Office of Farmland Preservation at the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. They may e-mail Andrew Sorrell, the Office of Farmland Preservation Coordinator, at andrew.sorrell@vdacs.virginia.gov or call 804.786.1906.



augusta free press
augusta free press news

UVA Basketball Fans!

uva basketball team of destiny
Team of Destiny: Inside Virginia Basketball’s Run to the 2019 National Championship, by Jerry Ratcliffe and Chris Graham, is available for $25. The book, with additional reporting by Zach Pereles, Scott Ratcliffe, and Scott German, will take you from the aftermath of the stunning first-round loss to UMBC in 2018 through to the thrilling overtime win over Texas Tech to win the 2019 national title, the first in school history.

Dick Vitale on Team of Destiny: “This is a hoops story you will LOVE! Jerry and Chris capture the sensational and dramatic championship journey by Tony Bennett and his tenacious Cavalier team. UVA was Awesome Baby and so is this book!”

Ralph Sampson on Team of Destiny: “Jerry and Chris have lived and seen it all, even before my time. I highly recommend this book to every basketball fan across the globe. This story translates to all who know defeat and how to overcome it!”

Buy here.

AFP Business

As professional consultants, Augusta Free Press LLC provides clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia and beyond with marketing and PR solutions including website design, SEO, TV/radio, video work, branding and logos, social media and overall marketing campaign design and implementation. Augusta Free Press LLC was founded in 2002.

Web Design

Augusta Free Press has designed more than 800 websites for clients in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia. We take care of all facets of web design – visual design, layout design, content development and SEO. Short on staff? We’ll work with you to update your AFP-designed website in a timely manner or train your staff to make changes.

Marketing/Social Media Management

Augusta Free Press manages advertising campaigns for small- and medium-sized businesses across Virginia. You don’t need to hire a full-time marketing coordinator. Bring the experience of the Augusta Free Press team to work for you – for a fraction of the cost.

Graphic Design

Augusta Free Press will help you take your vision to the next level. From branding and logos to print materials, our team will work with you to develop products to showcase your business. From brochures and rack cards to full-color magazines or print/digital ads, we’ve got you covered.

Event Planning/Fundraising

Augusta Free Press will help you plan the best event for your organization. From an open house or anniversary to a 5K or Pay Per View, we can handle it all. Looking for training for your sales staff? We can help energize your employees or board. Need ideas to raise more money? Let us help you plan a successful event. Want to hold a news conference or need help with a press release? We can do that too.

Click here for more.