Federal funds help preserve the Marratooka North Farm

11/08/2013 12:00 PM |
CARRIE MILLER PHOTO | Marratooka North Farm, an 18-acre farm off Main Road in Mattituck.

CARRIE MILLER PHOTO | Marratooka North Farm, an 18-acre farm off Main Road in Mattituck.

Southold Town has received federal grant funding to help preserve Marratooka North Farm, an 18-acre farm on Main Road in Mattituck.

The town has been awarded a state Farmland Protection Implementation Grant of $530,500 to be used toward buying the farm’s development rights – ensuring the farm remains in agriculture.

The town has spent a total of $1.138 million for the development rights. That’s a figure that includes the federal grant money, with the remaining $607,900 coming from the town Community Preservation Fund, said Melissa Spiro, land preservation coordinator for the town.

Southold Town’s land preservation office applied for the grant in 2008 and was able to close on the deal in July, Ms. Spiro said.

The now third-generation farm grows holiday plants, perennials and annuals in greenhouses, containers and in the field.

Grant funding is provided through the state Environmental Protection Fund and administered by the State Department of Agriculture and Markets.

Long Island Farm Bureau Farm executive director Joe Gergela said, “we’re at the point where every piece of farmland that is able to be protected is critical. There is still a lot of land in Suffolk that isn’t, and every piece of land is important to the future of agriculture.”

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