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Va. OKs $1.2 million for farmland preservation

Tuesday - 1/17/2012, 12:52pm  ET

RICHMOND, Va. - More than $1.2 million in farmland preservation grants is heading to 13 Virginia localities.

The grant funding announced Tuesday by Gov. Bob McDonnell and the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is significantly higher than $100,000 made available last fiscal year.

For this round of funding, eight localities each will receive $110,952. They are: the cities of Chesapeake and Virginia Beach and the counties of Albemarle, Clarke, Fauquier, Isle of Wight, James City and Spotsylvania.

Other counties receiving farmland preservation funds are: Shenandoah, $105,000; Stafford, $66,093; Franklin, $50,000; Washington, $46,000; and Northampton, $45,287.

Under the farmland preservation program, landowners who permanently preserve their land are compensated through the purchase of development rights.

McDonnell says one of his top environmental priorities is to preserve 400,000 acres during his administration.

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