Land trust has kept Marin's farms in business for 30 years
Rob Rogers, Marin IJ link to article
November 22, 2010
Kitty Dolcini feeds some of her open range chickens at her Red Hill Ranch on
When Rick LaFranchi looks out over his family's 1,150-acre Nicasio ranch, he sees the same fields, many of the same buildings and the descendants of the same dairy cows his grandfather brought to West Marin more than a century ago.
"Under typical zoning laws, a 600-acre property could legally be split 10 ways, and a residential homestead built on each parcel," said Jeff Stump, easement program director for MALT. "We retire those rights."
"Those easements have capitalized diversification projects like the Straus creamery, and allowed family members who wanted to continue in agriculture to compensate their siblings," said Ellie Rilla, community development adviser for the University of California Cooperative Extension in Novato.