Paper presented at the Seventh International Symposium on Society and Resource Management, University of Missouri, Columbia, May 25-27, 1998. The preservation of farmland is an important issue in most areas of the U.S. and all states have enacted legislation to promote this activity. This article reviews the various policy tools for preserving farmland. Use valuation of farmland for property tax purposes is the most common remedy but it is not effective where there are strong incentives to convert land to nonfarm uses because of high land values. The purchase of development rights has become an important method in areas facing severe pressures.


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