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 April 13, 2012 - Lehman Farm in Londonderry Twp. Preserved through Joint County, State Easement Purchase

​HARRISBURG (April 13, 2012) – Dauphin County Commissioners Jeff Haste, Mike Pries and George P. Hartwick, III have purchased an agricultural conservation easement for 174.17 acres of farmland from brothers Gerald and Galen Lehman of Londonderry Twp., Dauphin County. The easement will preserve the property as farmland in perpetuity.

The easement was purchased for $261,255. The county contributed $190,010.76 toward the purchase, and the state contributed $71,244.24.

This is the seventh farm in Londonderry Twp. to be preserved through the state-sponsored program. A total of 871 acres of farmland have been preserved in the township.

Since 1992, when Dauphin County began purchasing easements under the program, the county has preserved a total of 13,782 acres on 139 farms.

“Growing up on a farm in Pennsylvania myself, I am delighted that we can protect prime farmland in Dauphin County,” said Haste. “Of the approximately 94,000 acres of farmland in Dauphin County, the program has preserved about 15 percent of the total agricultural acreage.”

“Selling an easement can permanently protect a family's farmland from being sold for non-agricultural development,” said Pries. “Every year Pennsylvania loses about 80,000 acres of farmland. We need to protect some of our most valuable, rich farmland from development and sprawl.”

“We have taken steps to not only protect our green fields, but also to ensure agriculture continues to lead in the way in our economy,” said Hartwick. “By purchasing easements, we can protect our green space and encourage redevelopment and ‘smart growth’ in urbanized areas.”

The Pennsylvania Agricultural Conservation Easement Purchase Program enables state and county governments to purchase conservation easements from owners of quality farmland. The program was authorized by a county resolution in 1989, and the first purchase was consummated in November 1992.

For more information on the conservation of natural resources and farmland, please visit the county’s Conservation District Web site at www.dauphincd.org or call 717-921-8100.

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Category: Economic Development
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