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Active Farming program applications being taken

Siblings are a new addition this year to Active Farming.

The Active Farming homestead program is for property owners who do not live on their property but they or a qualified relative actively farm the land.

Here are important points for Stevens County property owners about the 2008 Active Farming program:

• 2008 new law for actively farming now includes siblings.

• Applications will be available in the office on Monday, Aug. 4, 2008.

• Applicants need to call for an appointment so the Stevens County Assessor's Office can help them fill out the application. Call (320) 589-7407.

• Individuals who received Active Farming in 2007 or have contacted the Assessor's office will receive letters in the mail informing them applications are available starting Monday, Aug. 4, 2008.

• If they received Active Farming in 2007 and need to make a re-application for 2008, they need to bring from the Farm Service Agency a copy of their 156EZ.

• If they are applying for Active Farming for the first time in 2008, they will need to bring a copy of the front page of their Schedule F income tax form; a copy of their 156EZ from the Farm Service Agency and Social Security numbers of the persons owning the land and farming the land.

• Active Farming is for property owners who do not live on their property but they or a son or daughter or granddaughter or grandson or sibling farm the property.

• Applications must be filled out in the Assessors's office by Aug. 18, 2008 or the property will be classified non-homestead for the 2008 assessment year taxes payable in 2009. No abatements for homestead will be granted if application is not filled out.

• Active farming applications must be completed every year.

• To qualify for Active Farming, the owner and the relative farming the land must be: Minnesota residents; Live within four townships of the property; Land must be 40 acres in size and not enrolled in easement programs.(CRP, CREP, WRP, RIM or other programs).