2019 Illinois Compiled Statutes
Chapter 505 - AGRICULTURE
505 ILCS 75/ - Farmland Preservation Act.

(505 ILCS 75/1) (from Ch. 5, par. 1301)
Sec. 1. Short Title. This Act shall be known and may be cited as the "Farmland Preservation Act."
(Source: P.A. 82-945.)


(505 ILCS 75/2) (from Ch. 5, par. 1302)
Sec. 2. Legislative Findings and Intent. The natural resources of Illinois - land, minerals, water, and air - are both finite and fragile. In the absence of wise use and consistent management practices, these resources are threatened by irreversible damage or loss. Protection of the State's natural resources is essential to guard the public health, safety, and welfare, and to assure an adequate natural resource supply and quality for use and enjoyment by future generations.
Since World War II, the amount of Illinois land dedicated to agriculture has steadily declined at an average rate of approximately 100,000 acres per year. This substantial loss of farmlands is the equivalent of eight average-sized Illinois counties. If this trend continues, the State will lose the equivalent of another five or six counties by the end of the century.
The conversion and loss of agricultural land has diminished Illinois' cropland base and affects environmental quality. The supply of land most suitable for farming is finite. Conversion of this land to urban development and other non-farm uses reduces future food production capability and may ultimately undermine agriculture as a major economic activity in Illinois. With less prime farmland available there will tend to be greater reliance on marginally productive land, resulting in greater soil erosion, increased fertilizer requirements and increased environmental damage. Loss of agricultural land can also reduce the beneficial role which the land itself can play. Agricultural land reduces runoff by absorbing precipitation, aids in replenishing groundwater supplies and can buffer environmentally sensitive areas from encroaching development.
The importance of preserving our agricultural land base has been recognized by the Illinois Rural Planning Council, the Task Force on the Future of Illinois, and in the State's "Comprehensive Growth and Resource Conservation Policies." Each of these efforts recommends that the State minimize the conversion of prime farmland that results from the direct or indirect effects of State programs and also encourages the achievement of related goals, such as reducing the loss of soil through erosion.
(Source: P.A. 82-945.)


(505 ILCS 75/3) (from Ch. 5, par. 1303)
Sec. 3. An Inter-Agency Committee on Farmland Preservation is created. The Directors or Chairpersons of the following agencies, or their representatives, shall serve as members of the Committee:
(a) the Capital Development Board;
(b) the Department of Natural Resources;
(c) the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity;
(d) the Environmental Protection Agency;
(e) the Department of Transportation;
(f) the Governor's Office of Management and Budget;
(g) the Illinois Commerce Commission; and
(h) the Department of Agriculture.
The Director of the Department of Agriculture, or his representative, shall serve as chairman.
(Source: P.A. 94-793, eff. 5-19-06.)


(505 ILCS 75/4) (from Ch. 5, par. 1304)
Sec. 4. The Inter-Agency Committee on Farmland Preservation shall prepare policy statements and working agreements for each of the agencies named in Section 3 of this Act specifying the policy of that agency toward farmland preservation and the administrative process used to implement that policy. The policy statements and working agreements shall be prepared as rules for the administration of the program. The policy statement shall include, but not be limited to, an analysis of the impact of agricultural land conversions attributed to the agency's programs, regulations, procedures and operations. The policy statement shall also detail measures that can be implemented to mitigate conversions to the maximum extent practicable. The State Agency policy statements and working agreements on farmland preservation shall be submitted to the Governor and the General Assembly and shall be updated by the State agency, and reviewed and approved by the Department of Agriculture, every 3 years. State agency policy statements and working agreements prepared in response to Executive Order Number 4 on the Preservation of Farmland and submitted to the Governor shall remain in effect upon this Act becoming law.
(Source: P.A. 82-945.)


(505 ILCS 75/5) (from Ch. 5, par. 1305)
Sec. 5. Except as provided in the working agreement between the Director of Agriculture and each State agency listed in Section 3 of this Act, when any State agency participates in a State funded capital project which will lead to conversion of farmland to nonagricultural purposes, the agency shall deliver written notification of the project to the Director of the Department of Agriculture.
The Director of Agriculture shall determine whether the project is in compliance with the agency's policy statements and working agreements on farmland preservation and shall conduct a study of the agricultural impacts if the project is not in compliance.
No agency may commit State funds for land acquisition or construction unless it is provided for in an exception contained in that agency's working agreement or until the study of agricultural impacts has been completed by the Department of Agriculture.
If the Director of Agriculture determines that a study of the agricultural impacts is necessary, the Department of Agriculture shall complete the study within 30 days of written notification by a State agency that it is considering a project which will result in conversion of farmland to a nonagricultural purpose. If the study is not completed within 30 days that agency may proceed with its intended action without the benefit of the study.
A copy of any study of agricultural impacts made pursuant to this Section shall be submitted to the Governor, to the President and Minority Leader of the Senate and the Speaker and Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, to the Director of each State agency participating in the project, and to each member of the Inter-Agency Committee on Farmland Preservation.
(Source: P.A. 82-945.)


(505 ILCS 75/6) (from Ch. 5, par. 1306)
Sec. 6. The Department of Agriculture shall administer this Act and report annually to the Governor and to the General Assembly the amount of farmland converted to nonagricultural uses as a result of State action.
The Department may seek the assistance and cooperation of other agencies of State government in compiling the data for this report.
The Department shall formulate rules and regulations for the implementation of this Act.
(Source: P.A. 82-945.)


(505 ILCS 75/7) (from Ch. 5, par. 1307)
Sec. 7. This Act shall not apply to those projects for which, on the effective date of this Act, (a) a final public hearing has been held or (b) design approval has been given by the responsible State agency or by the federal agency which is providing all or part of the project funds.
(Source: P.A. 82-945.)


(505 ILCS 75/8) (from Ch. 5, par. 1308)
Sec. 8. This Act shall take effect upon becoming law.
(Source: P.A. 82-945.)


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