Agriculture, Environment, Food, Land Protection, Stewardship

What to Know About MALT and Marin’s Measure A

November 29, 2021

Measure A, which levies a quarter-cent sales tax to support parks, open space, and agricultural lands across Marin County, was passed in 2012 with 74% support of county residents.

The vote to renew Measure A doesn’t happen until June 2022, but already there’s plenty of conversation—and, unfortunately, some misconceptions—about the measure, especially as it relates to the portion of the law that goes toward agricultural protection.

Here are some common questions and concerns we hear about Measure A and MALT.

What is MALT’s relationship with Measure A funds?

What is an agricultural conservation easement?

Are agricultural conservation easements just ways to put money in ranchers’ pockets?

Why was MALT formed in the first place?

How do agricultural conservation easements make a positive impact on agricultural lands?

What is MALT’s role in the agricultural conservation easement process?

But why should public tax funds be used to purchase conservation easements for privately owned farms and ranches?

How much Marin County land is now covered by MALT’s agricultural conservation easements?

With that much agricultural land protected, doesn’t that mean that MALT has succeeded in its mission?

Why the need to devote Measure A funds to Farmland Protection?

Fire prevention is top of mind for everyone in Marin. Shouldn’t Measure A prioritize funding for fire prevention rather than agricultural easements?

But how do agricultural lands help with fire protection?

How much Measure A funding has MALT received to date?