Ag workshop slated for Friday at CVIC Hall |

Ag workshop slated for Friday at CVIC Hall

Staff report

How do agricultural lands benefit communities and their quality of life? What are some forms of compensation to farmers and ranchers – other than money? Is compensation desirable and might it influence agricultural sustainability?

Compensating agriculture for the values it provides communities is the subject of a free workshop 9 a.m.-noon Friday at the CVIC Hall in Minden.

“Agriculture’s Value to Communities” is sponsored by the University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, Carson River Coalition and Western Nevada Resource Conservation and Development Council/Natural Resource Conservation Service. It will explore the potential of rewarding farmers and ranchers for the value their land use brings to communities.

“Agricultural lands and people provide essential ingredients to the rural character and quality of life we cherish in Nevada,” said Steve Lewis, Extension Educator, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension.

“To a large degree, these characteristics are taken for granted and seem to be enjoyed while they last. Rather than leaving such a critical community component to fate, could specific efforts help sustain agriculture?”

Workshop speakers will include Paul Urban, program manager for the Truckee River Flood Management Project. Urban will discuss lessons learned from flooding problems created when agricultural lands are lost to development.

Ed James, general manager for the Carson Water Subconservancy, will introduce a concept of leasing agricultural lands to keep floodplains open to accommodate flood waters and a lease/sell water-rights option.

Harmon Zuckerman, principal planner with Douglas County, will describe the lease development rights programs used in other states.

Mitch Dion, Douglas County Community Development director, will speak on how agricultural landowners might be reimbursed for damage due to flooding.

Jacques Etchegoyhen, of Terra Firma Associates LLC, will address compensation through conservation easements.

Douglas County Commissioner Kelly Kite will help set the stage by discussing the value of agriculture from a commissioner’s perspective.

For details and more information, call Steve Lewis at 775-782-9960.