Stewardship Assistance and Restoration (SARA) application period open'.
The SARA program helps improve the status and condition of land that has been protected by an APR. Massachusetts farmers who own or operate farmland placed under an APR held by the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources are invited to participate in the SARA Program to improve the overall utilization of APR land resources for commercial agriculture.
Funds must be used for activities related to restoring inactive farmland for active commercial agricultural use or project implementation costs associated with resource restoration for increased agricultural production on existing farmland. Eligible applicants include APR landowners and those engaged in farming activities on APRs who have been actively operating a commercial farm or have the background and experience to manage productive farm resources on APR lands that were protected with Department funds on or before June 30, 2018, and meet all program eligibility requirements. Applicant(s) must not have been the original owner of the property when the land was placed under the APR unless the proposed restoration is clearly in response to damage caused by a natural disaster or damage perpetrated by a third-party (e.g., storm, abutter runoff).
Maximum funding per applicant is 85% of total project costs, up to a maximum amount of $35,000, subject to the availability of funding. There is a match requirement of a minimum of 15% of total project costs, including materials and contracted labor.
Applications must be received by 4:00 pm on Friday, April 2, 2021. All projects will begin at contract start date, anticipated to be in late Summer of 2021, and must be completed by the contract end date of June 30, 2022.
Additional information or questions should be addressed to:
Julie Weiss – (617) 913-5317