The paperwork’s been completed, the money has changed hands, and now there’s one more farm protected in perpetuity in New Paltz and 600 more feet of Wallkill riverbank which will be undisturbed.
Pete Taliaferro has been seeking a way to provide for his family in retirement for some years, and he wasn’t looking to do it by selling his farmland to real estate developers. After a number of schemes proved unpalatable, Taliaferro Farms have now become a nexus of cooperation in the name of preserving open space. In exchange for giving up those development rights, Taliaferro received $387,000, which was paid from the coffers of the Town of New Paltz, the County of Ulster and the nonprofit agency Scenic Hudson. Taliaferro has said that more than three-quarters of that money will be needed to pay off existing debt.
Under the agreement, the 32-acres Plains Road property won’t be usable for much else but farming and 660 feet of riverbank will remain as is. This ensures that a well-known farm in the community that’s associated with bucolic views from the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail will remain as residents have come to know them.
The easement documents grant enforcement authority to the Wallkill Valley Land Trust.