Five things you should know about Ag Districts and Ag Security Areas

1. Landowners can enroll in an agricultural district with their county auditor. The land must be at least 10 acres, or if less than 10 acres, have an average gross income of at least $2,500 from agricultural production. While the requirements are the same as for the Current Agricultural Use Valuation program, a landowner must enroll in each program separately.

2. Agricultural district registration affords important benefits to landowners, including an affirmative defense in certain nuisance suits that might be filed against a landowner for their agricultural activities. Other benefits concern assessments for water, sewer and electric and eminent domain review.

3. If land is in a municipality, the agricultural district enrollment must be approved by the city’s legislative body and the benefits of the ag district program can be modified.

4. Agricultural security areas are an opportunity for a group of landowners and local officials to make a commitment to keeping land in agricultural production for at least 10 years. During an Agricultural security area agreement, no non-agricultural development will be permitted on the property.

5. Agricultural security areas need to be at least 500 acres of contiguous farmland, have all landowners agree to enroll, and be located in unincorporated areas of a township or county. An application must be filed with the county auditor, and the local governments must hold a hearing and pass a resolution approving the area.

More Landowner Information

For further explanation of these tips and other information on other topics impacting landowners, Ohio Farm Bureau members can log in and download the Landowner Toolkit. Not a member? Join today!

Get the full list of landowner topics covered in the toolkit, with tips blogs for each in Ohio Farm Bureau’s Legal Information Series.

Also, listen to Legal with Leah, a podcast featuring Ohio Farm Bureau’s Director of Ag Law Leah Curtis discussing topics impacting landowners.