Fulton County Agriculture Planning Open Houses
Fulton County will hosts three open houses for farmers and farmland owners seeking input to update Agricultural & Farmland Protection Plan
The Fulton County Planning Department recently announced it is seeking public input on updating the county’s Agriculture and Farmland Protection Plan and will be holding three (3) open house-style events over the next several weeks.
The open houses for farmers and farmland owners will be held at the following local volunteer fire departments and times:
– Saturday, Feb. 10, Mayfield Fire House, 28 North School Street, Mayfield, from 11 am to 12:30 pm;
– Monday, Feb. 26, Sammonsville Volunteer Fire Department, 1326 Route 67, Johnstown, from 5 to 6:30 pm,
– Wednesday, March 6, Berkshire Volunteer Fire Department, 320 Steele Ave Ext, Gloversville, from 6 to 7:30 pm. Anyone that is interested in agriculture is encouraged to stop by and provide feedback.
In the summer of 2023, The Fulton County Board of Supervisors hired Community Planning and Environmental Associates of Berne, New York as a consultant to work on the plan. Led by Nan Stolzenburg, FAICP, a former dairy farmer, they have completed several county agricultural plans such as Schoharie and Herkimer Counties as well as working with the Town of Broadalbin on their Comprehensive Plan in 2005.
Over the past several months, surveys have been sent to residents and farmers.
Surveys have been sent to residents and farmers seeking input for the Fulton County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Board and Fulton County Farm Bureau. Subsequently, focus groups have been held on a variety of topics such as dairy and livestock, field crops and orchards, tourism, commercial agriculture, solar and the increasing presence of Amish in the southwest corner of the county.
“The current Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan is over 20 years old and does not take into account the increase of renewable energy on prime agricultural soils, succession planning, HFM BOCES PTECH and invasive species affecting crops,” says Scott Henze, Director of the Fulton County Planning Department and Fulton County Visitors Bureau.
“The county’s goal is to help showcase the diverse assortment of agriculture ventures within the county such as the successful Farm to Table event with Fulton and Montgomery County farmers, and the Ag. Loan Program through Fulton County Center for Regional Growth (FCCRG). This includes local breweries, farmers markets and farm stores, an increase of blueberry farms and maple production, cannabis production, and the presence of commercial ventures like Fage, Westmeadow Creamery, and Pata Negra LLC (Espuna),” Henze continues.
Information on the open houses can be found on the Fulton County homepage at fultoncountyny.gov, the County’s Tourism Page at 44lakes.com or by calling the Fulton County Planning Department at 518-736-5660. For those who are unable to attend the open houses can stop by the Fulton County Planning Department by appointment and offer feedback at 1 East Montgomery Street, Johnstown.
Fulton County is working to revise and update its County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan. As part of this effort, we are reaching out to farmers and farmland owners to understand diverse interests and perspectives on agriculture and identify key issues, challenges, and opportunities to the agricultural industry. (PLEASE NOTE: We are also reaching out to the general public via a separate survey. If you are looking for the public survey, please visit fultoncountny.gov or Fulton County Public Survey for Agriculture and Agri-Tourism
We hope you will share your thoughts with us by participating in the survey, which will take about 15 minutes to complete. All responses will remain anonymous. We welcome your input and thank you in advance for contributing to this very important effort. Thank you for participating in our survey. Your feedback is important.