Friday, February 28, 2020     Volume: 20, Issue: 52

Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on August 20th, 2019, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 20, Issue 25 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 20, Issue 25

Land Trust announces expansion plans

By William D'Urso

The Land Trust for Santa Barbara County announced ambitious plans to broaden its conserved area to 40,000 acres by 2025.

Bruce Reithman looks over land in Santa Barbara County protected through an easement with the Land Trust of Santa Barbara County.

“One of the most important innovations at the Land Trust over the past few years has been a discernible shift in the execution of our mission from an opportunistic and largely reactive organization to one that is proactive and strategic,” the trust’s executive director, Chet Work, said in a news release.

The trust was established in 1985, and through various partnerships with local families and other landowners, it has helped to preserve 27,000 acres. The trust’s preservation work spans ranches, farms, and natural habitats in areas like Arroyo Hondo Preserve, Point Sal, Sedgwick Reserve, and the new Rincon Bluffs Preserve.

The Land Trust for Santa Barbara County was recently acknowledged by the California State Legislature for its efforts to sustain and protect local lands. The certificate of recognition lauds the “organization’s work with property owners to preserve and protect key historical and natural resources.”

The trust’s efforts have also resulted in what it calls an agricultural easement of a 395-acre plot owned by the Hibbits family in Lompoc. An agricultural easement enables property owners such as the Hibbits family to voluntarily deed-restrict their property from being developed outside of traditional agricultural uses in perpetuity.

According to the organization, working with families like the Hibbitses is key to accomplishing its goals. The Sun reached out to the Land Trust for comment, but was unable to connect with a representative prior to press time. 

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