The 2013 legislative session concluded with some notable victories for farmland preservation, which were a direct result of WLA’s strong advocacy work. This includes the following successes:
- After many years of hard work by our coalition, the legislature unanimously passed a bill to protect 825 acres of state-owned farmland at the Southbury Training School! This was one of WLA’s top priorities this session, and countless hours went into advocating for this bill and seeing it through to successful passage. This important bill protects a large tract of prime and important farmland and we hope will set the stage for preservation of other key state-owned farmland.
- WLA successfully defended the Community Investment Act (CIA) from a proposed raid of $4 million in funds. Even better, the final budget actually included a significant new source of revenue to the CIA account by requiring the recording of mortgage assignments, with a portion of the recording fees dedicated to the CIA account. This will increase the total funds available to support farmland protection efforts and many other important community-level investments in agriculture, open space, historic preservation, and affordable housing across Connecticut!
- WLA continues its strong advocacy on behalf of the Farmland Preservation Program, which will receive another $20 million in total bond funds over the next two fiscal years. This steady and robust funding for the program is critical to the program’s success, and will leverage millions of dollars in local, federal, and private funds for farmland preservation.