Public policy plays an important role in our endeavors. With a new administration, and hearings starting this year for the next Farm Bill, LFG and our partners – including many also involved in the Land Access Project (LAP2) – are working on policy proposals focused on land access and transfer.
Outside the Farm Bill, tax reform is a policy target, such as capital gains exclusions on farm sales, and beginning farmer tax credits. Our region leads the nation in state policy innovation in areas of farmland protection and mitigation, land restoration for agriculture, land availability and affordability, and farm transition. For example:
- estate tax changes in Vermont and Massachusetts
- solar siting bill in Vermont
- voluntary municipal farm support program in Maine
- state land access program in Rhode Island
- land Conservation Plan pending in New Hampshire
- revisions to a Connecticut statute allowing greater support for farm linking and transfer
We believe that good policy starts with good information. Our policy work is informed by what we learn directly from farmers and landowners around the kitchen table, and through collaborations with a wide variety of research and program partners. With core support from other funders, Land For Good continue to engage our LAP2 colleagues and others in work on state and federal policy initiatives advocating for greater, more secure access to farmland for all farmers–and for keeping working farmland active across the generations.
Our work on the ground with farmers, farm families, public and private landowners directly informs our advocacy. We understand the specific land challenges entering and exiting farmers face, and what landowners need to improve access and tenure to farmers.
As part of our advocacy, we investigate state and federal policy barriers, gaps and solutions; engage diverse stakeholders to change systems that will improve how farmers access, hold and transfer land; and educate policymakers about the importance of land access to a vibrant and sustainable regional and national food system. Through our outreach, education and policy work, we build awareness and catalyze action.
For more information, contact Cris Coffin, Policy Director at Land For Good, firstname.lastname@example.org.