[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Elk 3-6-2003 by Ord. No. O-2-2003. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Editor's Note: The following nonbinding public question was placed on the November 5, 2002, election ballot: "Are you in favor of the annual appropriation of a sum equal to the rate of $0.1 per $100 assessed valuation per year in the Elk Township Municipal Budget to contribute toward the purchase of Open Space and Farmland Preservation Easements in Elk Township." The voters of Elk Township approved the question.
The intent of this chapter is to establish a Farmland Preservation and Open Space Assistance Trust to encourage retention of farmland and open space by placing into each annual budget an amount equal to $0.01 on the tax rate. This Trust Fund shall be used to encourage landowners to apply for the State and County Farmland Preservation Program and help them gain additional qualification points by allowing them to agree to a lower per acre price (called a bid down) than that established by the State Program Approved Appraiser. Payment shall be limited to those landowners accepted into the State and County Program for Permanent Farmland Preservation. This Trust Fund will also be used to acquire open space in the Township of Elk.
Each year the Elk Township Committee shall place in the annual municipal budget an amount up to $0.01 on the tax rate. The amount to be raised shall be determined by the Elk Township Committee and verified by the Elk Township Auditor.
[Amended 8-5-2010 by Ord. No. O-2010-43]
The Elk Township Chief Financial Officer (CFO) shall establish and maintain an Elk Township Farmland Preservation and Open Space Trust Fund by using the amount placed in the final adopted annual budget to fund this program. The CFO shall make monthly reports to the Township Committee regarding the balance status of the trust.
[Amended 4-1-2010 by Ord. No. O-2010-15]
This Trust Fund shall retain all interest earned for program use.
There shall be no money dispensed from this fund until an amendment to this chapter or a separate chapter has been established and approved that sets forth the qualifications, procedures, payment formula and pay out method for permanent farmland preservations assistance and open space acquisition.