|Applications accepted through October 31
Albemarle County is accepting applications through October 31, 2015 for the upcoming round of the Acquisition of Conservation Easements Program (ACE), a voluntary, non-regulatory program established to protect land and working farms in the rural area. Any landowner in the County whose land is worthy of protection after an ACE evaluation is eligible. This evaluation process system scores and ranks properties by 17 different criteria that measure conservation value including: 1) open space resources (such as size of parcel and whether it joins a permanently protected area); 2) threat of conversion to development and; 3) natural, cultural, historical or scenic resources (such as mountaintops, working family farms, important viewsheds, scenic highways and rivers, watersheds, productive soils and historically significant properties). Any property that scores a minimum of 20 points is eligible for consideration, however, properties in the applicant pool with the highest point total have the highest priority. The Program will pay up to 100% of easement value depending on an applicant’s average adjusted gross income over the previous 3 years.