View Full Version : PA Clean & Green question

Jan. 4, 2011, 11:10 AM
I went to look at a property over the weekend, it grossed 10.5 ac, netted 10 ac with set backs and road stuff, and netted 3.6 w/ setbacks and wetlands. I hope that's understandable.

I know that you have to have 10 ac in PA for the C&G program, but is it 10 ac gross, or is 10 ac net?:confused:

The property had MANY other problems, the whole property is a flood plain:eek:, so it's no longer an option, but did spark this question.

Thanx in advance, feel free to ask any questions, or for clarification!:yes:


Jan. 4, 2011, 11:29 AM
Hey LDR!

happy new year! was going to PM you this morning but saw this and figured I'd say hello here.

C&G is very ambiguous and confusing (ask me how I know :rolleyes: and you basically need Cliff Notes to get through it lol) but one thing I was told by my realtor is that in order for a property to be in C7G, it must have been previously an established farm or it won't immediately get the C&G program.

However, I suggest calling the Ag Dept directly because I have since been told by said realtor that a 5 acres property can get in C&G so I honestly don't know how that could be possible.

It's all Greek to me so as I also look, I plan to call the Ag ext office when we finally (if we ever) find a place.

But I'm curious, which property are you looking at? I was going to call about one today in Adams that has about 10 acres and needs work, wondering if it's the same one....

Jan. 4, 2011, 02:00 PM
I'll PM you the addy. If it is the same, it's one of those props that either needs a WHOLE lot of work, or just needs a little, it's hard to tell without a pro.


Jan. 5, 2011, 03:39 PM
The last time I looked into Act 319(about a year ago), it was gross acreage, but the acreage needs to be contiguous. And there are three categories, so it doesn't necessarily have to be a "farm":

Ag Use: Typical "farm" producing "something"- livestock, eggs, hay, etc

Forest Use: suitable for logging

Ag Reserve: what most of us with 10 acres or more, but not really "farming" would fall under. Downside of this is you need to leave your land "open to the public for recreation". What does that mean? I don't know. the best I could determine was that if I did not post "No Trespassing" signs, implying that people could walk on my land, then I was good. AFAIK, it does NOT mean that I need to allow hunting or anything like that on the property.

Our property is 9 acres, just shy- but there is a 2 acre parcel right next to us that we've been considering purchasing for about the last 5 years solely for tax breaks. it is owned by a billboard company and I did confirm that there can be an easement for the billboard and we would still qualify, as long as the 10 contiguous acres are met. Be aware there is a June 30th filing deadline to enroll for the next tax year(again, as of last year when I last looked into it).

Here's a link to the actual PA code:
http://www.pacode.com/secure/data/007/chapter137b/chap137btoc.htmla here's a link to a good overview doc: http://extension.psu.edu/scregion/Communities/Programs/Ag%20Security%20Area_files/156%20C&G%20%20Handout.Revised.02.pdf

Take all of the above at face value- I have not gone through the actual process. i did find that the state and county ag depts were extremely helpful every time I called to ask some questions. Fortunately for me that 2 acres is acreage that no one else would ever want, and it only has value to us for Act 319. With land prices so low and hopefully billboard revenue too, I should really look into this again... they may have softened up to a super-lowball offer :lol:

Jan. 5, 2011, 08:26 PM
No advice about C&G....but....some unsolicited advice...

We live on a very wet property and I'd NEVER DO IT AGAIN...

The amount of time, labor, and $$ we've put into the farm over the past 5 years WOULD have made a LOVELY farm on a DRY property.

BUT - we're wet with clay dirt (doesn't drain), so it takes probably 5x the amount of time, labor, supplies, ($$) etc. to get the small things done...

For example - we have @32" of shale down under the barn footing and sacrifice paddock, just to keep the barn from flooding and the sacrifice paddock from turning into a total quagmire. Then add in the normal building footing, stall footing, mats, etc.
(bonus, though, we can use the machine to just scrape out the paddock when everything finally melts in spring!)

Same thing in trying to build a ring - between putting down the base of shale and building drainage around the ring, we've already paid for the same ring probably 4x over IF the property was dry and only needed the typical excavation/base/footing.

Just something to consider and build into your plan!!

oh - was just thinking though -
b/c the property is a flood plain, you may qualify for state grants for a barnyard and manure pit!!!
We're looking into that right now b/c we're so involved in the water supply/table.

Jan. 5, 2011, 08:34 PM
I don't know the answer legally, but when we were looking we looked at a property that was just over 10 ac (10.25) and had 5 ac in hay. They were enrolled in C&G, so I would guess it is the total

Jan. 5, 2011, 09:21 PM
As of 1/1/05, there was no longer any minimum acreage. You still have to meet the minimum gross annual income of $2,000 from the approved sources. You have to apply to your county before June 1.