Volunteer Ag District Meeting Held in Tyrrell County

Published 10:34 pm Tuesday, June 3, 2014

-From News Release
Seventeen people were in attendance at a recent Voluntary Ag District (VAD) meeting held at the Tyrrell County Farm Bureau.

Mr. Brandon King, Extension Associate Agricultural & Resource Economics of the NC Cooperative Extension Service and Mr. Steve Woodson of North Carolina Farm Bureau gave a tag team power point and question and answer presentation of what VAD means to a community and the steps needed to establish it in a given county.

The purpose of the program is to encourage the preservation and protection of farmland from non-farm development.  There are currently 86 counties in North Carolina that are enrolled in VAD.  Agriculture is a $78 billion industry in North Carolina.  Farm communities are seeing a need to protect their rights; to use tractors late at night, run grain dryers, move heavy machinery down the highway and other things connected with farming that others might see as a nuisance.

Implementing VAD in a given county is not considered zoning or an easement nor is it mandatory for any farmer to include their land.  It is strictly voluntary.

Mr. Frank Winslow, County Extension Director of the Tyrrell County Extension Office, is in the process of collecting names for submission, to form an advisory board.  It was suggested that various local departments including the Register of Deeds office, the county lawyer, the county manager, County GIS and the Soil and Water department get involved in the process.

VAD is not state controlled and answers to local government only, as long as they abide by the General Statutes mandated by the state.  This is why the advisory board is so important.  If someone disagrees with the decisions of the advisory board the county commissioners would then hear an appeal.

Step one has been taken in getting Tyrrell County included in the almost statewide VAD.

More information may be obtained by contacting the NC Department of Agriculture and Consumer Sciences or your local extension agent.