The goal of the County’s agricultural preserve program is long-term preservation of agricultural and open space lands. The program is governed by the California Land Conservation Act (also known as the Williamson Act), the County’s Uniform Rules for Agricultural Preserves and Farmland Security Zones, and the recorded contract between the owner and the county, which runs with the land.
The California Land Conservation Act allows the County and owners of agricultural and open space land to voluntarily enter into agreements that restrict the owner’s use of the land to agricultural and/or open space uses and uses compatible with those agricultural and/or open space uses, in exchange for a reduction in property tax assessment. Land Conservation Contracts have ten (10)-year automatically renewing terms. The County also offers Farmland Security Zone Contracts, which are similar to Land Conservation Contracts, but for twenty (20)-year automatically renewing terms.
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