AGRICULTURE AND FARMLAND PROTECTION COMMITTEE
Agriculture and Farmland Protection Plan - adopted February 26, 2013
The importance of agriculture to the local economy and the rural character of Ulysses was recognized in the Town’s 2009 update of the Comprehensive Plan. The Town is home to a healthy and diverse collection of farming enterprises that contribute to the viable and flourishing agricultural industry in the Finger Lakes region. In an effort to support, protect, and preserve agricultural enterprises and land use in the Town of Ulysses for future generations, an Agriculture and Farmland Protection Plan is currently being developed by farmers, farmland owners, and crop consultants in the Ulysses community.
The volunteer Ag Committee, appointed by the Town Board, is charged with drafting the Agriculture and Farmland Protection Plan and includes representatives from local farms, large landowners, and agriculture-related businesses. Professional planners from Bergmann Associates (who assisted in preparing the Town’s 2009 Comprehensive Plan) and staff from Cornell Cooperative Extension of Tompkins County are also acting as committee consultants.
Economic development, education, policy implementation, and sustainability were identified as the four objectives that would help achieve the Ag Plan’s overall vision. Based on these, the following goals for the Plan were developed:
- Strengthen the agricultural economy
- Improve the public’s understanding of all aspects of rural farming
- Establish appropriate governmental regulations that support agriculture
- Enhance land-use policies to better protect farmland
A grant from the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets is providing the majority of funding to complete the Agriculture and Farmland Protection Plan. The Ag Committee will submit the Draft Plan to the Town Board who will make it available for additional public review and comment before scheduling a public hearing and moving to adopt the plan.
Ag Committee Members
John Wertis, Chair
Bruce Austic - Farmer
Yhi-Chaw Chang - Organic Farmer
Charles Houghton - Farmer
Anne Finney - Farmer
Robert Howarth - Farmland Owner
Mark Ochs - Crop Consultant
Alison Pritts - Farmer
Anthony Potenza - Organic Farmer
Robert Weatherby - Farmer