DC-18-0003: Agriculture-Related Amendments
The Board of County Commissioners authorized staff to pursue text amendments to the Boulder County Land Use Code related to agricultural uses and definitions on May 10, 2018. Staff is drafting proposed text amendments to the Land Use Code pertaining to agricultural uses and definitions. Staff will propose amendments based on the Agriculture Outreach Project and staff analysis. Primary areas of focus for the amendments include farm events, farm sales, structures to extend the growing season, and potential changes to land use review processes for producing farms. Upcoming public meetings and hearing will be posted to the DC-18-0003 webpage when scheduled, and notifications will be sent to the Land Use Code email list. Sign up for updates.
The agricultural community has expressed to the county that they face a variety of significant challenges. Staff is working with the community to identify and address potential issues that will better position farmers and growers to succeed and thrive in Boulder County. In late 2017 a team of staff from Boulder County Land Use, Public Health, and Parks & Open Space departments and CSU Extension launched the Agricultural Outreach Project to identify topics and prioritize for updates to the Land Use Code and related regulations and programs.
While we are accepting comments on a variety of issues specific to agricultural operations in Boulder County, the intent of the project is to identify current priorities for Land Use Code updates and related regulations and programs. Often, the challenges facing the agriculture community are complicated and are related to regulations in multiple county departments. The use of genetically engineered (GE) herbicide-resistant crops on county-owned open space agricultural land is a separate topic not related to the Land Use Code and therefore not part of this process. Please visit the Cropland Policy page for more information.
Members of the agricultural community have provided input through online comments and surveys, an open house in January, and topic-focused public meetings in March, 2018.
Agricultural Outreach Project Summary of Public Comments to Date
- Summary of March 2018 Public Meetings
- Summary of Jan. 18, 2018 Open House and online comments
- Summary of Jan. 18, 2018 Open House and online comments in tabular format
Subscribe to the Agriculture Outreach Project news list to receive updates via email or text message.
Agriculture Outreach Survey Results
A team of staff from Boulder County Land Use, Public Health, Parks & Open Space, and CSU Extension surveyed members of the agricultural community in May, 2018 regarding how the current Land Use Code and other regulations affect agricultural operations. Public input about what is working well and what could be improved will be used to update Land Use Code and Boulder County staff priorities. The survey included focused questions identified as important based on input from prior meetings. View the survey results overview.
How To Participate
Initial outreach feedback is posted (view survey responses) to allow other community members to view. Additional comments will be accepted throughout the Agricultural Outreach process and incorporated as the process continues. Staff is happy to meet in person or speak over the phone. Input can be provided via the staff contacts listed below.
Topic-focused community meetings, March 8 and 14, 2018
Staff held two topic-focused community meetings on March 8 and 14, on Farm Sales and Farm Events, and Hoop Houses, Greenhouses and Housing.
The purpose of the meetings was to gain a deeper understanding of some of the specific needs of the community, review staff’s initial ideas, and ask some additional focused questions. The meetings helped to equip staff with more detailed information to guide preparation of proposed Land Use code revisions. Staff is processing the input received, as well as any follow up comments received through the end of March.
An online survey is planned for launch in May, 2018. The survey questions will be informed by input received to date, and will be aimed at gathering both baseline information on current agricultural activity, and additional data needed to help shape revised code language. Through that survey we hope to capture responses from a greater number of participants in Boulder County’s agriculture community.
Open House, Jan. 18, 2018
Staff conducted an open house to introduce the project, provide information, review the feedback received, and discuss the current Boulder County Land Use Code.
County staff is available to discuss this project with interested parties and answer questions: