- Williamson Act at a glance
What is it? The state’s agricultural land protection program enacted in 1965 to keep land in agricultural production or open space. The property owner agrees to not sell it to a developer for at least 10 years.
How many acres in California? 16.6 million of the state’s 29 million acres of farm and ranch land are protected under the Williamson Act. California has 100.2 million total acres. (Figures as of 2010.)
Can contracts be terminated? Yes, but it takes 10 years after the county or property owner files a “notice of non-renewal.” If the notice isn't filed, the 10-year contract continues.
Contracts/acres in San Joaquin County: 543,663 acres, 12th in the state, and 2,549 contracts (as of 2010, the last years figures were available).
What's in it for the landowner? He or she is assessed for property tax purposes at a rate consistent with its actual use rather then potential market value. Their tax liability is reduced from 20 to 75 percent in property tax liability each year.
How many counties participate? 54, all except San Francisco, Yuba, Del Norte and Inyo.
Source: California Department of Conservation
Posted: Sunday, January 6, 2013 7:13 pm
The San Joaquin Farm Bureau Federation says a plan by Viaggio Winery to add a deli on its farm violates the state’s Williamson Act, which protects agricultural land from being sold for urban uses.
The Farm Bureau is asking the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors to overturn the county Planning Commission, which unanimously approved the deli on Oct. 18.
Sunday, January 6, 2013 7:13 pm.
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