We are working proactively with community and government leaders to plan a better future for Marion County’s farmland. The goal is for the County to write and adopt a forward-thinking Rural Land Management Plan that helps us to grow sensibly and preserve what makes Marion County the Horse Capital of the World®.
WHAT IS A RURAL LAND MANAGEMENT PLAN?
A plan that outlines compatible land uses for the rural area. It will identify issues, resources, policies and methods for the long-term viability of agriculture, while balancing growth and development.
- Preserve agricultural lands
- Promote compact urban growth and community-centered growth
- Conserve natural resources
WHY IT’S IMPORTANT
Marion County has one of the highest growth rates in the nation, and the majority of this growth is outside the municipal limits of Ocala. The Florida 2030 Report projected that the population would reach 500,000 by 2040; that’s an increase of nearly 150,000 residents over the next 20 years.
About 2,000 acres of the Farmland Preservation Area has already been lost to urban uses. Without a plan, rural lands are vulnerable to development and providing services to sprawling development is inefficient and costly to taxpayers.
A Rural Land Management Plan will help protect the natural resources and quality of life in Marion County, which is known for its pastoral views of horse farms, majestic oak trees and clear, blue spring water.