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Bucks County expands farmland preservation

By Kris Rile, WFMZ.com Reporter
Published On: Mar 20 2013 08:54:08 PM CDT

Bucks County is continuing extensive farmland preservation efforts throughout the County. The Bucks County Commissioners approved the purchase of two large properties in the county to assist in farmland preservation. The first property is located in Durham Township and the second is located in Buckingham Township.

The first property is a request from the Bucks County Agricultural Land Preservation Program. The property is over 151 acres of farmland owned by Patricia Cook in Durham Township. The total purchase price of the property is $584,353, of which the County will be responsible for approximately 40% equaling $233,741.20. The remaining 60%, or $350,611.80 of the cost will be coming from the state. According to Agricultural Land Preservation Representatives, more than 80 acres of the soil on the property is labeled Class 2 Soil, which is some of the best soil in the state. Cook plans on contacting Delaware Valley College to request some college students to work on this property for experimental farming purposes as an addition to classwork.

The second property is a request from the Municipal Open Space Program. The Open Space Program is requesting a 64.1858-acre easement on a grant for this property from the Commissioners. The total acreage of the property is over 300 acres. The total appraised value of the property is $1.3 million, of which the County will be responsible for 32% or approximately $427,053. Buckingham Township will be responsible for $258,000 of the total purchase price of the property.

Including the property in Durham Township, the Bucks County Agricultural Preservation Program will be responsible for 156 farms. With the addition of the farm in Buckingham Township, over 600 acres in the Township will be under the umbrella of the Open Space Program.