Agriculture is a diverse, dynamic and vital land use in Connecticut that provides countless economic and environmental benefits to a community. This session will provide planners and town governments the tools and resources to plan for the future of agriculture and help create a supportive community atmosphere in which agriculture can thrive. The session will: 1) address the status of agriculture and challenges farmers face in CT; 2) discuss major issues facing agriculture related to land use and planning; 3) describe planners' efforts to foster a thriving agricultural sector; 4) discuss state and federal programs to protect farmland and manage it sustainably; and 6) offer specific planner ‘take-aways’ from the webinar.
The program attendees will also receive copies of the newly-revised educational guide, ‘Planning for Agriculture: A Guide for Connecticut Municipalities’. This comprehensive booklet covers topics including the benefits of farms, planning and zoning tools, right-to-farm ordinances, subdivision regulations, financing local farmland protection, promoting local farm viability, and addressing common farming issues and concerns.
Town Planner, Town of Lebanon
Philip Chester, AICP, holds professional degrees in both planning and architecture. As a Town Planner in Suffield and Lebanon, CT, he helped established successful agricultural preservation programs, mandatory cluster regulations, village district zoning and other smart growth initiatives. Philip is the 2011 recipient of the ... Read More
Director of Planning and Zoning, Town of New Canaan
A member of New Milford Farmland & Forest Preservation Committee since 2006 and Chair for the last four years, Steve Kleppin is also full-time Director of Planning and Zoning for the Town of New Canaan and owner of Windswept Farm, a choose-and-cut ... Read More
Director of Farmland Preservation, CT Department of Agriculture
Cam Weimar directs the farmland preservation programs for the State of Connecticut, including community farms, farmland restoration, and CT Farmlink. Cam has been an urban planning professor, planning consultant, land trust director, and a municipal planner. He holds a doctorate in Natural ... Read More
Director of Member Relations and Community Outreach, CT Farm Bureau Association
Joan Nichols is the Director of Member Relations and Community Outreach for Connecticut Farm Bureau Association. In this role, she provides one-on-one assistance to farmer members on a variety of issues related to running an agricultural business including but ... Read More
Consulting Conservation Scientist – American Farmland Trust
Kip Kolesinskas is currently a Consulting Conservation Scientists and his current projects include assisting agencies, NGO’s, and private individuals with farmland protection, land access and affordability for new and beginning farmers, farmland restoration, and climate change adaptation strategies. He is a member of ... Read More