Land Preservation

The 72nd meeting of the Garrett County Agricultural Preservation Advisory Board will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Tuessday, November 16, 2021 in room 208 of the Garrett County Courthouse.

Document Agenda (50.45 KB)

Planning & Land Management helps administer the following land preservation programs:

Program Open Space

Program Open Space is a nationally recognized program providing dedicated funds for Maryland's state and local parks and conservation areas. POS funding is used to purchase ballfields, neighborhood playgrounds, tennis courts, boating facilities, swimming pools, fishing sites, hunting areas, forests, golf courses, hiking trails, greenways, wildlife areas, historic sites, formal gardens and a host of other natural community resources.

Garrett County Agricultural Land Preservation

Garrett County has adopted a Document Garrett County Agricultural Land Preservation District Ordinance (376.39 KB) in order to assist in the preservation of agricultural land.

The Document Garrett County Agricultural Land Preservation District Fact Sheet (105.31 KB) provides information about the County's District program.

The Document District Property Description (125.83 KB) form is completed with the assistance of the Garrett Soil Conservation District (301-334-6951) to determine if the property meets soil productivity requirements.

The Document Garrett County Agricultural Land Preservation District Agreement (297.69 KB) must be signed and notarized by the landowner.

Garrett County has also adopted a Document Tax Credit Ordinance (162.97 KB) for agricultural land in Garrett County. Approved Agricultural Preservation District or easement properties are eligible for the tax credit on all agricultural lands and woodlands. Taxes continue to be assessed on all residential and agricultural structures, however, the property tax on all real estate is 100% rebated under the Tax Credit Program. Should the District be terminated, the landowner shall be responsible for all back property taxes plus interest.

Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation (MALPF)

The Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation (MALPF) was established by the Maryland General Assembly in 1977 and is part of the Maryland Department of Agriculture. The Foundation purchases agricultural preservation easements that forever restrict development on prime farmland and woodland. Property owners with an approved Garrett County Agricultural Land Preservation District may be eligible to sell an easement to MALPF.

Rural Legacy

Maryland's Rural Legacy Program provides the focus and funding necessary to protect large, contiguous tracts of land and other strategic areas from sprawl development and to enhance natural resource, agriculture, forestry and environmental protection through cooperative efforts among state and local governments and land trusts.

Garrett County created the Document Bear Creek Rural Legacy Area (90.94 KB) to help protect over 31,000 acres of the Bear Creek watershed in the northern part of Garrett County. Productive agricultural land is protected, which ensures the long-term viability of agriculture in the Area. The Rural Legacy Area also encompasses and provides additional protection for the Bear Creek drainage basin, Deep Creek Lake, the Cove scenic overlook, the Bear Creek Fish Hatchery, and a significant amount of State and private forested lands. Working farms, standing timber, view sheds, natural habitats and waterways are all being preserved. Property owners within the Bear Creek Rural Legacy Area may be able to sell a perpetual conservation easement to the County using available Rural Legacy funds.

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