Public Workshop to be held on Wednesday, September 7
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (DEM) announced today a second public workshop on the State's new Farmland Acquisition Program (FAP). FAP, approved by voters as part of a 2014 environmental bond measure, helps ensure Rhode Island's farmlands remain in farming. During the workshop, DEM will highlight and gather input on a preliminary outline of the FAP program.
WHAT: Review and Comment on Draft Rules & Regulations for the Rhode Island Farmland Acquisition Program
WHEN: Wednesday, September 7, 2016 – 5:30 p.m.
WHERE: Corless Auditorium, URI Graduate School of Oceanography 215 South Ferry Road, Narragansett
DEM continues to work across many fronts to strengthen Rhode Island's green economy and to promote the viability of local agriculture. The state's green industries account for more than 15,000 jobs and contribute $2.5 billion to the economy each year. And local agriculture continues to be a hotbed for innovation and entrepreneurship – with the number of farms in Rhode Island on the rise and a growing young farmer network. Access to land, however, continues to be a challenge for many farmers. FAP is one way DEM is addressing this challenge. It allows the Department to partner with the State's Agricultural Land Preservation Commission and willing sellers to purchase farmland, protect it, and affordably sell it to farmers looking for land. The voluntary program supports farmers by giving landowners an option that will keep historic farmlands available for farming. As part of the 2014 Clean Water, Open Space and Healthy Communities bond measure, $3 million is available for farmland preservation. The Draft FAP Rules & Regulations are available online and will be updated based on public input.
For more information on DEM programs and initiatives, visitwww.dem.ri.gov. Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/RhodeIslandDEM or on Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM) for timely updates.