HARRISBURG, Pa. — Pennsylvania’s Agricultural Land Preservation Board added 2,724 acres on 34 farms in 15 counties to the more than 5,100 farms across the state permanently preserved for agricultural production.
The board preserved farms in 15 counties: Berks, Bradford, Cambria, Chester, Cumberland, Franklin, Greene, Lancaster, Lehigh, Mercer, Northampton, Schuylkill, Somerset, Washington and York.
Farms preserved in western Pennsylvania include:
- The William A. and Lura Ann Cree farm, Greene County, a 58.4-acre crop and livestock operation.
- The Jess Powell farm No. 2, Mercer County, a 60.4-acre crop farm.
- The Baer Bros. Farm, Somerset County, a 141.2-acre crop and livestock operation.
- The Alvin M. Carter Irrevocable Trust farm, Washington County, a 115-acre crop farm. The Laurel and Dale Rush farm, Washington County, a 115-acre crop and livestock operation.
Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding voiced concern that despite an additional $8 million in funding for farmland preservation under Governor Tom Wolf’s budget — $40 million versus the $32 million available this year — proposed cuts from the governor’s plan in operating support by the state House of Representatives may threaten the department’s ability to administer the program.
Since the program began in 1988, federal, state, county and local governments have invested nearly $1.4 billion to preserve 536,181 acres on 5,136 farms in 58 counties for future agricultural production.