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Preserving Agricultural Land via Property Assessment Policy and the Willingness to Pay for Land Preservation


  • Russ Kashian

    (Marquette University)

  • Mark Skidmore

    (University of Wisconsin-Whitewater)


In 1995, Wisconsin changed its agricultural land assessment policy from market valuation to use-valuation. The result is a significant reduction in property tax burdens for agricultural landowners. The goal of this legislation is to protect Wisconsin’s farm economy and curb urban sprawl by reducing the costs of retaining fringe land for agricultural purposes. However, agricultural property tax reductions must be compensated for by increases in property tax burdens of the rest of the community. The authors examine the effects of the new assessment policy on households in Muskego, Wisconsin. Specifically, the authors calculate property tax reductions for agricultural land-owners and property tax increases for nonagricultural landowners. The authors then compare actual household benefits (or costs) of this policy with household willingness to pay for land preservation. From this analysis, the authors determine which households receive a net benefit and whether the community as a whole enjoys a net benefit.

Suggested Citation

  • Russ Kashian & Mark Skidmore, 2002. "Preserving Agricultural Land via Property Assessment Policy and the Willingness to Pay for Land Preservation," Economic Development Quarterly, , vol. 16(1), pages 75-87, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:ecdequ:v:16:y:2002:i:1:p:75-87

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    Cited by:

    1. Pavel CIAIAN & Sergio GOMEZ y PALOMA, 2011. "The Value of EU Agricultural Landscape," JRC Working Papers JRC65456, Joint Research Centre (Seville site).
    2. Kashian, Russell, 2004. "State Farmland Preferential Assessment: A Comparative Study," Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy, Mid-Continent Regional Science Association, vol. 34(1), pages 1-12.
    3. John C. Bergstrom & Richard C. Ready, 2009. "What Have We Learned from Over 20 Years of Farmland Amenity Valuation Research in North America?," Review of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 31(1), pages 21-49.
    4. Pavel Ciaian & Sergio Gomez y Paloma, 2011. "Valuation of EU Agricultural Landscape," EERI Research Paper Series EERI_RP_2011_20, Economics and Econometrics Research Institute (EERI), Brussels.

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