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Abstract

While many states such as Vermont have adopted the Purchase of Development Rights (PDR) programs to protect farmland, few studies have examined how the prices of such development rights are determined and whether the prices are close to the market value. Using data from the state of Vermont, this study first examines the effects of development restrictions on the market price of rural and semi-rural properties and then addresses the question of whether the prices paid for development rights are close to the market value. Our results based on an hedonic model suggest that development restrictions do reduce the market value of rural and semi-rural properties in Northern Vermont but the prices paid by Vermont's PDR programs are significantly higher than the estimated market value.

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