Suffolk County Farmland Preservation 

Saved For Now! 



The landmark program, which has successfully protected more than 10,000 acres of farmland from residential development in the last 40 years, has been secured for the future for now.

After 18 months in limbo, the Suffolk County Farmland Preservation Program is back in business.

This innovative program — the first of its kind in the nation to protect working farms — had been in jeopardy since September 2016. That month, a decision by New York State Supreme Court Justice Thomas Whelan declared that – going forward – farmers could not have agricultural structures or improvements necessary to farming placed on their protected land. This was a shock to many farmers who had retained the right to make these improvements.

Fortunately, on March 14, the New York State Appellate Division rejected the State Supreme Court decision. That means that once again, farmers are permitted to build these structures and make improvements on their protected land. But, we are not completely out of the woods yet because this decision may be appealed to the Court of Appeals. We remain vigilant and ready to act if necessary.


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