The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) has announced updates to its Farmland Preservation Program due to Governor Tony Evers signing 2023 Wisconsin Act 42 in December.
This legislation makes the following updates to the Farmland Preservation Program:
- Decreases the minimum term of a farmland preservation agreement from 15 years to 10 years for newly effective agreements starting on December 8, 2023.
- Beginning in tax year 2023, the amount of the tax credits that eligible landowners may receive for qualifying acres will be increased to the following rates:
- From $7.50 to $10, per qualifying acre, for qualifying acres that are located in a farmland preservation zoning district but are not subject to a farmland preservation agreement.
- From $5 to $10, per qualifying acre, for qualifying acres that are subject to a farmland preservation agreement but are not located in a farmland preservation zoning district.
- From $10 to $12.50, per qualifying acre, for qualifying acres that are located in a farmland preservation zoning district and are subject to a farmland preservation agreement.
- Expands eligibility for farmland preservation tax credits to land that is subject to an agricultural conservation easement purchased under s. 93.73, Wis. Stats to the extent planned for farmland preservation and not already eligible through a farmland preservation zoning district or farmland preservation agreement. Eligible landowners will receive $10 per acre for qualifying acres.
- DATCP will also be required to report on tax credits per qualifying acre and recommendations for the tax credit amounts in the program’s biennial report.
“The Farmland Preservation Program helps ensure agricultural lands will remain productive, viable, and sustainable,” said DATCP Secretary Randy Romanski. “This change to the program supports farmers and the future of Wisconsin agriculture and demonstrates the commitment of Governor Evers and the legislature to Wisconsin’s $104.8 billion agriculture industry.”
Preliminary data for claims made in 2022 shows that more than 9,700 agricultural landowners claimed the farmland preservation tax credit on tax schedule FC-A at an average of 200 acres, and over $1,500 per claim. Currently, there are more than 7.8 million acres located in an eligible zoning district, Agricultural Enterprise Area, or both. Landowners who are interested in participating in the Farmland Preservation Program can contact their local land conservation department to get started. CLICK HERE FOR A MAP AND MORE INFORMATION.