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Welcome to the Division of Land Resource Protection

Programs to Conserve California's Farmland & Open Space Resources

Californians make their home amidst some of the most productive farmland and diverse open spaces in the world. The Department of Conservation's Division of Land Resource Protection (DLRP) works with landowners, local governments, and researchers to conserve these resources for everyone's future.

Hot Topics

Open Space Subventions - 2014 Survey of Participation

The FY 2014 Survey of Participation is now available on the Open Space Subvention Payments page.  Despite elimination of the 2014 OSSA payments, this information is critical in order to document the level of participation in the program and the impact the loss of OSSA payments is having on local governments.  It is the basis for the biennial Land Conservation Act Status Report, which provides information to the Legislature and general public on the status of the Williamson Act Program among counties and cities. 

Solar-Use Easements - Senate Bill 618 Offical Regulations - Effective February 1, 2014

The Department of Conservation has formally adopted regulations (under Title 14 of the California Code of Regulations), establishing the procedures, fees, standards, and criteria for solar-use easements. The regulations clarify SB 618 language and the Department of Conservation’s role in implementing the solar-use easement statute.  Through these procedures, solar-use easement agreements may be approved between cities or counties and agricultural landowners that are parties to Land Conservation and Farmland Security Zone Act contracts.  Please see the Solar-Use Easements page for more information. 

Land Conservation (Williamson) Act - Open Space Subventions

Open Space Subventions were eliminated as of the FY 2010-2011 budget. Effective July 15 2011, AB 1265 allows eligible counties to re-capture 10 percent of the property tax benefits provided to their owners of Williamson Act lands. Background on the legislation is available in this updated Advisory Statement (PDF).

Farmland Mapping - California Important Farmland Finder

CALIFORNIA IMPORTANT FARMLAND FINDER
An interactive version of the Important Farmland map data. Locate your area of interest, calculate acreage, and other useful features, using this online tool. Introductory material about the site and its features is also available.    

News and Information

Easements and Land Conservation Status

Summary of Agricultural Easements and Planning Projects Funded by CFCP

The 2012 Williamson Act Status Report and Enrollment Statistics 
The 2014 Status Report is now being compiled. 

Agricultural Land Use and Farmland Conversion

2012 Important Farmland Maps and Statistics
Fresno, Sacramento and Yuba counties are now available.  Come back for more postings in the weeks ahead!

The 2008-2010 California Farmland Conversion Report
The most recent statewide and regional breakdown of farmland conversion trends.

Important Farmland Maps in PDF format
Full size maps for viewing your area of interest; new releases are posted regularly.

The LESA Model & Mitigation

The Land Evaluation and Site Assessment (LESA) Model  evaluates agricultural characteristics of specific sites, as indicated in California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) guidelines.   

The California Council of Land Trusts offers a guidebook titled Conserving California’s Harvest – A Model Mitigation Program and Ordinance for Local Governments, which contains input from experts in the fields of local governance, agriculture, conservation, law and mitigation.  The guidebook's focus is on implementation and evolution of farmland mitigation programs that preserve and protect California's world-class agricultural landscape.

Legal and Policy Information

CFCP legislation, effective January 2011
Creates flexibility for conservation of 'whole farms'

Right to Farm Real Estate Disclosure
2009 legislation relies on Important Farmland Maps to define agriculture in real estate transactions. 

Grant Programs

The DLRP administers two grant programs to assist local governments and nonprofits in achieving long-term resource management goals: the Sustainable Communities Planning Grants and Incentives Program (awarded by the Strategic Growth Council) and the Watershed Coordinator Grants. Both programs are funded through the Safe Drinking Water, Water Quality and Supply, Flood Control, River and Coastal Protection Act of 2006 (Proposition 84).