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WAC 458-30-242

Application for open space/farm and agricultural conservation land classification.

(1) Introduction. The 1992 legislative changes to chapter 84.34 RCW created a subclassification of farm and agricultural conservation land within the open space classification. This section explains the criteria and procedures related to farm and agricultural conservation land.
(2) Open space application criteria and process must be followed. Farm and agricultural conservation land is not a separate classification within chapter 84.34 RCW. This type of land is merely a subclassification within the open space classification.
(a) To obtain the open space/farm and agricultural conservation land classification, the applicant must follow and comply with the procedures and requirements related to the open space classification. The process of applying for open space classification is set forth in RCW 84.34.037 and WAC 458-30-230.
(b) In addition to the information normally required to accompany an application for open space classification, an applicant seeking open space/farm and agricultural conservation land classification shall submit a statement about the previous use, the current use, and the intended future use of the land. If the land is traditional farmland that has never been classified under chapter 84.33 or 84.34 RCW, this information should be included in the applicant's signed statement.
(3) Specific requirements for classification as open space/farm and agricultural conservation land. To be classified as farm and agricultural conservation land, the land shall be:
(a) Previously classified as farm and agricultural land under RCW 84.34.020(2), that no longer meets the criteria for classification under RCW 84.34.020(2), and that shall be reclassified as open space land under RCW 84.34.020(1); or
(b) Traditional farmland that is not classified under chapter 84.33 or 84.34 RCW, that has not been irrevocably dedicated to a use inconsistent with agricultural uses, and that has a high potential for returning to commercial agricultural purposes.
(4) Examples.
(a) Farmer Jones and his wife own nineteen acres of classified farm and agricultural land. Farmer Jones dies and his wife inherits the classified land. Mrs. Jones realizes that she cannot actively farm the land and produce the annual amount of income required by RCW 84.34.020 (2)(b). She decides to have the land reclassified as farm and agricultural conservation land within the open space classification. The land may be reclassified as open space/farm and agricultural conservation land under subsection (3)(a) of this section if she submits an application for reclassification as open space/farm and agricultural conservation land and the application for reclassification is approved by the granting authority.
(b) Farmer McDowell has a fifty acre parcel of land on which he raises pigs and goats. He inherited this land from his father who farmed it before him. Also, the land has never been classified under chapter 84.34 RCW nor has it ever been designated forest land under chapter 84.33 RCW. As the result of an accident, Farmer McDowell breaks his back and cannot actively farm the land for an extended period of time. This land may be classified as open space/farm and agricultural conservation land under subsection (3)(b) of this section if Farmer McDowell submits an application for classification as open space/farm and agricultural conservation land, the application for classification is approved, the land is not irrevocably dedicated to a use inconsistent with agricultural uses, and the land has a high potential for returning to commercial agriculture.
[Statutory Authority: RCW 84.08.110, 84.08.070, 84.34.141 and 84.34.360. WSR 95-21-002, ยง 458-30-242, filed 10/4/95, effective 11/4/95.]
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