Farm and Open Space Programs

Farm and Open Space Valuation

Farm and Open Space

(Title 36, M.R.S.A. Sections 1101-1121 as amended by PL 195, c.603)

Farm land under this statute means land registered for long-term use in agricultural production.

Valuation - The assessor establishes the 100% valuation per acre on a current use basis, i.e. reflecting their value as agricultural land, not as developable land.

Requirements - At least one of the applicant's tracts must be 5 contiguous acres which produces a gross income of at least $2000 per year in one of the two or three of the five calendar years preceding the date of application. By April 1 of each fifth year, the owner must file an income report of the gross agricultural income derived from the subject property.

Withdrawal - Should the owner change the use of part or all of the property, a substantial penalty is assessed.

Open space land under this statute means registered land, the preservation or restriction of the use of which provides a defined public benefit

Valuation - Either market value of open space land or an alternative percentage-based method is used. In the percentage method, a reduction from market value is granted for each restriction placed on the subject property:

  • Ordinary open space land -20%
  • Permanently protected -30%
  • Forever wild -20%
  • Public access -25%

In no case can the land be valued at less than the prevailing tree growth valuation.

Requirements - A public benefit must be obtained in one or more of the following areas:

  1. Conserving scenic resources
  2. Enhancing public recreation opportunities
  3. Promoting game management
  4. Preserving wildlife or wildlife habitat

Withdrawal - Should the owner change the use of part or all of the property, a substantial penalty is assessed.

Click the links below to download the application forms: