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Rural Legacy Program Preserves Land in Carroll County

Photo by Chuck Aaron

Photo by Chuck Aaron

The State has added 100 acres to its permanently protected rural landscape and eliminated several developmental rights in Carroll County. Governor Martin O’Malley and the Board of Public Works today approved funding to preserve the land located in the Little Pipe Creek Rural Legacy Area.

“Through the Rural Legacy Program we continue to protect Maryland’s valuable field, forest and farmland, and preserve its culture and heritage for our children,” said Governor O’Malley.

The easement known as the Sussman Property provides a valuable contribution to the future of agriculture in Carroll County because a full 75 acres of the 100-acre tract is tillable, and is predominantly made up of crop-productive Glenelg Soils. The region will be managed by the County Commissioners of Carroll County and the United States Department of Agriculture in accordance with a Total Resource Management Plan to help prevent soil erosion, maintain water quality and enhance agriculture and forestry.

The easement will eliminate approximately seven building lots requiring septic systems, reducing conflicting residential uses in the Carroll County Agricultural Zoning District. This project will also permanently protect more than 900 linear feet and 2.4 acres of land along an unnamed tributary to Turkeyfoot Run and Little Pipe Creek that will work to improve water quality and prevent damage from sediment and livestock.

Enacted by the General Assembly in 1997, Maryland’s Rural Legacy Program has to date provided approximately $249 million to protect 77,343 acres of valuable farmland, forests, and natural areas.  The 11-member Rural Legacy Advisory Committee and the Rural Legacy Board, comprised of Maryland’s Agriculture, Natural Resources and Planning Secretaries, reviews grant applications annually.

The three member Board of Public Works is composed of Governor O’Malley (chair), Treasurer Nancy Kopp and Comptroller Peter Franchot. The BPW is authorized by the General Assembly to approve major construction and consultation contracts, equipment purchases, property transactions and other procurement transactions.