“The City of Auburn values its agricultural heritage, protects the natural beauty of its land, and promotes locally grown food, raising livestock, managing forests and natural resource-based businesses.”
Rural Auburn has a unique Agricultural and Resource Protection (AGRP) zoning district, which has been in place since the early 1960’s that contains over 40% of the city’s land area, or over 20,000 acres. The purpose and intent of the AGRP zoning regulations has been to manage development and to promote food, agricultural, timber and natural resource production and uses. The AGRP zoning regulations have significantly restricted development for the last 50 plus years. Today however, the nature and trends of farming and food production have drastically changed. In response, Auburn desires to strengthen its natural resource-based economy (farming, timber, food businesses, etc) and better integrate this sector into community planning and City-wide priorities. In order to do so, the City requires a better understanding rural land owner needs and goals; the identification of opportunities for additional support and/or investment, and greater understanding of existing barriers and potential solutions and strategies.
The Ad-Hoc Committee on Auburn's Agriculture and Natural Resource was established to serve in an advisory role to the City Council, Planning Board and city staff during the length of the contract term with Crossroads Resource Center (the “consultant”). Committee Members are the primary volunteer liaisons with Crossroads Resource Center and will meet at a time, place and such frequency as the Committee and the consultant deem necessary. Any final report and/or recommendations from the work of the consultant will come to the City Council and/or Planning Board by way of votes of the Committee. The Committee may select a chair or vice-chair, if necessary, and shall determine as a group and with guidance from the consultant the best way to facilitate their meetings. It is expected that the Committee is not the only means of public input and involvement in the study, but they may provide guidance to city staff and the consultant on approaches to public engagement throughout the study period. Any continuation of this Committee beyond the term of the consultant’s contract will be at the discretion of the Mayor at the time or vote of the City Council.