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Skip Navigation LinksHome > Departments > Development Services > Planning Division > Farmland Preservation Board Thursday, May 28, 2015
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Iredell County Development Services

Planning Division - Farmland Preservation

Farmland Preservation Program

Iredell County Voluntary Farmland Preservation Program

The purpose of the Iredell County Farmland Preservation Program is to protect and encourage the improvement and voluntary preservation of its agricultural and forest lands.  The ordinance does this by limiting the circumstances under which an agricultural or forestry operation may be deemed to be a nuisance by establishing farmland districts.  This is in recognition of the importance to the economic and cultural life of the county.

The General Assembly of the State of North Carolina authorizes counties to undertake a series of programs to encourage the preservation of farmlands. This statutory authority is found in Chapter 61 of the North Carolina General Statutes. On June 19, 2001 the Iredell County Board of Commissioners adopted the Voluntary Farmland Preservation Ordinance for Iredell County, North Carolina.

This ordinance allows for the creation of the Farmland Preservation Board. This Board reviews and approves all applications for qualified farmland and agricultural districts. The Board also advises the Board of Commissioners on issues affecting the agricultural community as well as the agricultural districts.

During the 2002-2003 year, the Farmland Preservation Board took an active role by designing and distributing farmland preservation signs (see picture below). This included deciding on the design and finding the funding (Farm Credit and Farm Bureau) for the signs. The Farmland Preservation Board has also given recommendations to the Iredell County Board of Commissioners for amendments to the Iredell County Zoning Ordinance that relate to farmland activities and they also held meetings about exploring other farmland preservation tools (PDR, agriculture zoning, etc).

Farmland Preservation Program

What are the qualifications to become a member of a district?

Agricultural Districts shall initially consist of 25 or more acres or be within 1 mile of an existing district of qualifying farmland, or at least two (2) or more qualifying farms, which collectively will create a district. Application Agricultural Districts can be enlarge by adding other qualified farms and non-farm landowners contiguous to the agricultural districts.

Participants must sign a preservation agreement that prohibits non-farm use or development of such land for at least ten (10) years, except for the creation of not more than three (3) lots that meet applicable County Zoning and subdivision regulations. Participants also agree to sustain, promote, and encourage agricultural in the district and support protection against impacts on participating farms.

A complete list of requirements is available at the Iredell County Planning and Development Department or at the Iredell County Cooperative Extension Office.


Farmland Brochure
(pdf format - requires Acrobat Reader)

Farmland Preservation Map
(pdf format - requires Acrobat Reader)

This map shows the Farmland Preservation Districts in Iredell County.

Farmland Preservation Ordinance
(pdf format - requires Acrobat Reader)
This ordinance details the Voluntary Farmland Preservation Program, the qualifications, how to apply, and Board procedures.

Enhanced Farmland Preservation Ordinance
(pdf format - requires Acrobat Reader)

Farmland Application
(pdf format - requires Acrobat Reader)
This application begins the review process for potential inclusion into the Voluntary Farmland Preservation Program.  You must complete this form and submit it to the Planning and Development Department’s Farmland contacts.

Countywide Farmland Protection Plan - October 2008
(pdf format - requires Acrobat Reader)


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