New York Agriculture & Markets Law
Statement of Legislative Findings and Intent
It is hereby found and declared that agricultural lands are irreplaceable state assets. In an effort to maintain the economic viability, and environmental and landscape preservation values associated with agriculture, the state must explore ways to sustain the state’s valuable farm economy and the land base associated with it. External pressures on farm stability such as population growth in non-metropolitan areas and public infrastructure development pose a significant threat to farm operations, yet are the pressures over which farmers have the least control. Local initiatives in agricultural protection policy, facilitated by the agricultural districts program established in article twenty-five-AA of this chapter, have proved effective as a basic step in addressing these pressures. In an effort to encourage further development of agricultural and farmland protection programs, and to recognize both the crucial role that local government plays in developing these strategies, plus the state constitutional directive to the legislature to provide for the protection of agricultural lands, it is therefore declared the policy of the state to promote local initiatives for agricultural and farmland protection.