Patrick Hornschemeier, a Cardinal Land Conservancy Board of Directors member, asked the Highland County commissioners Wednesday to adopt a resolution authorizing that William and Glenna Rowe be allowed to enter their nearly 350 acres of farm land into the Local Agricultural Easement Purchase Program.
“Ohio Department of Agriculture regulations calls for a resolution of approval from the county commissioners,” he said. “Their rationale is that although they want to make funds available to purchase these easements to preserve farmland in perpetuity, they don’t want to go against any plans the county or township might have.”
According to the resolution that was adopt by commissioners Jeff Duncan, Gary Abernathy and Terry Britton, the Rowe’s have two tracts of land, one at 10970 Rowe Rd. that totals 137.811 acres, and the other totaling 211.031 acres at 10730 Rowe Rd.
Cardinal Land Conservancy, based in Milford, is a nationally accredited land trust that is also a 501(c)(3) charitable organization authorized to protect land in perpetuity.
In information supplied to the commissioners, an agricultural or conservation easement is a voluntary, legally binding agreement between a private landowner and a qualified conservation organization, with the sole purpose of restricting or eliminating development to protect scenic, natural or agricultural resources.
The organization serves individuals, families and communities within seven counties of Southwest Ohio, and to date has utilized more than $5 million in grant funding to protect more than 40 separate parcels encompassing more than 5,000 acres.
Also Wednesday, a pair of resolutions and one contract was approved.
In addition to the resolution authorizing the Rowe’s to participate in the Ohio LAEP program, another resolution appointed the 2020 board members to the Highland County Local Correction Planning Board and Re-entry Coalition.
The sole contract that was approved was a road use maintenance agreement between the commissioners, county engineer and Kiewit Construction, who Duncan said was an engineering contractor involved with one of the Highland County solar farm projects.
In other matters, approval was given to complete plans for the demolition of the barn that is at the site of the sewer plant on SR 124 east of Hillsboro.
Reach Tim Colliver at 937-402-2571