Utah County Commission Proposes 274.3-Acre Agricultural Conservation Area News, sports, jobs

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A grandson of Rex Larsen sprays his 4-H cow with water at his family’s farm in Leyland near Spanish Fork on Friday, April 21, 2023.

Sarah Hunt, Daily Herald


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Rex and Sherry Larsen pose for a photo with two of their grandchildren next to one of their beef cattle that has just been groomed at their Leyland farm near Spanish Fork on Friday, April 21, 2023.

Sarah Hunt, Daily Herald


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Rex and Sherry Larsen stand next to a restored truck that belonged to Rex’s father, ordered from the Ford factory in 1977 and attached to a custom-made bed. This photo was taken at their Leyland farm near Spanish Fork on Friday, April 21, 2023.

Sarah Hunt, Daily Herald


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A grandson of Rex Larsen dries his cow 4-H with an air hose at his family’s farm in Leyland near Spanish Fork on Friday, April 21, 2023.

Sarah Hunt, Daily Herald

The Utah County Commission met last week to discuss a proposal to create a 274.3-acre agricultural protection zone in Leland and Benjamin.

Brandon Gordon, vice chair of the Utah County Commission, said at the April 12 meeting.

If passed, this district would be protected from outstanding domain and nuisance lawsuits brought by cities, municipalities, and utility companies. Many farmers and ranchers came out to the meeting to express their opinions on the proposed area.

“The main reason we’re going after that is because Spanish Fork City allows for a lot of potential subdivisions, the most recent being a four-story high-rise apartment building right next to farmland in our neighborhood. We just want to have that extra protection,” said Rex Larsen, Leyland farmer and farmer. Right now, most of us just want to continue cultivating and doing what we’ve been doing without harassment from newcomers.

Larsen’s great-grandfather started Larson Family Farms 154 years ago, creating a legacy for his children and grandchildren to carry on.

When asked by the Daily Herald why he enjoyed farming and ranching, Larsen said, “Well, it’s kind of in your blood. It just becomes part of your heritage, your legacy. I remember, if one of the previous generations ran out, how different my life would be because I didn’t have the chance.” To engage in farming and ranching. It’s a great place to raise a family and teach them how to work.”

In October, Larsens managed a Cornfield maze pumpkin patch. Almost every weekend of the season they have their whole family there helping out, while the cousins ​​and grandkids play.

Larsen is working on adding the land on which his corn maze sits to the conservation area, which currently includes his farm. He said he supports the APS because he wants the family farm to last for years to come.

Brent Money, a fourth-generation farmer in the area, shared similar sentiments. “I’m totally with that,” said Money. “Because I’m farming full time—it’s not a part-time job—and as cities encroach and populate, it would be nice to have some kind of protection in place.”

Brent Mooney, son of former Senator Eldon Mooney, remembers an agricultural conservation area his father established nearby that still exists today. He hoped that all farmers and ranchers in the vicinity would support the establishment of this new agricultural protection zone.

I think some people may be confused and think that if (their land) is in an agricultural protection area, then the land should still be an agricultural area. I’ve talked to people before and they said, “We don’t want to limit what we can do with our land.” But it doesn’t change your ability to sell your property, honor a home, or even if you’re in town to sell it to be subdivided. to protect you. So I can’t think of a reason why anyone would oppose cultivation.”

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