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DiMAIO’S GREEN ACRES LEGISLATION RECEIVES ASSEMBLY APPROVAL
Green Acres legislation, sponsored by Assembly Republican Appropriations Officer John DiMaio, that appropriates funding for the acquisition of land for the purpose of farmland preservation, was approved today by the General Assembly.
Under the three bills, several towns and nonprofit organizations in DiMaio’s 23rd Legislative District will receive grants ranging from $500,000 to nearly $2.2 million.
“New Jersey is known as the ‘Garden State’ for a reason. We have a responsibility to use our natural resources wisely and safeguard the land,” said DiMaio, R-Warren, Hunterdon and Somerset. “The funding provided by these bills will help ensure that our residents and visitors to our state will continue to enjoy the natural resources we are blessed with. These measures send an important message that New Jersey is committed to preserving and safeguarding its diverse landscape.”
The first bill, A-3592, appropriates $38.5 million from the “2009 Farmland Preservation Fund and the “Garden State Farmland Preservation Trust Fund” for the acquistion of development easements on farmland for preservation purposes.
Towns in DiMaio’s district that will each receive $1 million grants include, in Hunterdon County - Alexandria, Bethlehem, Clinton, Franklin, Hampton and Holland. In Somerset County - Bedminster and Bridgewater, and in Warren County – Alpha, Franklin, Greenwich and Harmony.
The second measure, A-3593, appropriates $16,250,000 from the “2009 Farmland Preservation Fund” for planning incentive grants to municipalities for farmland preservation purposes.
The following towns will each receive $500,000 in funding: In Hunterdon County – Alexandria, Holland and Kingwood; Somerset County – Bedminster and Peapack-Gladstone; Warren County – Franklin and Greenwich.
The third bill, A-3594, appropriates $4,083,420 from the “2009 Farmland Preservation Fund,” the “2007 Farmland Preservation Fund,” and the “Garden State Farmland Preservation Trust Fund” for grants to nonprofit organizations for farmland conservation purposes.
The Hunterdon Land Trust Alliance in Kingwood Township (Hunterdon County) will receive a grant not exceeding $289,600 while the New Jersey Conservation Foundation will receive $2,169,237 for two farms in Bedminster Township (Somerset County). The Land Conservancy of New Jersey has been allocated $1,516,983 for three farms in Harmony Township (Warren County).
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"When you're asked to cast a vote on a bill and it seems innocuous, and it's got a hidden land mine that perhaps only an expert would see, it would sort of behoove those experts to tell us in advance rather than make us look, shall we say, a little bit indecisive later on." - Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll (R-25).- NJTV
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