On March 28, 2007, the Cattaraugus County Legislature adopted the county's first Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan. The purpose of this plan is to analyze and understand the foundations of Cattaraugus County's agricultural economy and to create recommendations for structural economic development programming to ultimately enhance the future of local agriculture.
The plan is intended to encourage long-term policy formation in support of agriculture while providing a specific short-term framework to guide local programs regarding specific agricultural economic development and land use initiatives. To accomplish this, the consultant team of ACDS, LLC and the American Farmland Trust (AFT) gathered published data for Cattaraugus County and the surrounding region to assess current conditions. This data was reaffirmed by interviewing 44 farmers, agribusinesses, entrepreneurs, service providers, public officials, and community leaders. In addition to interviews, the study team sent a survey to town officials to assess on-the-ground land use conditions.
The result of the process is a series of findings relative to agricultural business and land use conditions. As well, the study team has made 12 recommendations for action to improve these conditions in advancement of both the agricultural industry and local communities.
(warning: this is a large file - 16 Mb)