Substitute House Bill No. 6943
          Substitute House Bill No. 6943

              PUBLIC ACT NO. 97-171


AN ACT CONCERNING FARMLAND PRESERVATION.


    Be  it  enacted  by  the  Senate  and House of
Representatives in General Assembly convened:
    Section  1. Section  22-26cc  of  the  general
statutes is amended  by  adding  subsection (i) as
follows:
    (NEW)  (i)  The  Commissioner  of Agriculture,
pursuant to any  cooperative  agreement  with  the
United  States  Department  of Agriculture for the
disbursement  of  funds  under  federal  law,  may
require  that  any  property  to  which rights are
acquired under this section with such funds  shall
be  managed in accordance with a conservation plan
which utilizes the standards and specifications of
the  Natural  Resources Conservation Service field
office technical guide and  is  approved  by  such
service.  Any instrument by which the commissioner
acquires such rights and for which any such  funds
are used may provide for a contingent right in the
United States of America in  the  event  that  the
state  of  Connecticut fails to enforce any of the
terms of its rights acquired  under  this  section
which  failure  shall  be determined by the United
States Secretary of Agriculture.  Such  contingent
right  shall  entitle the secretary to enforce any
rights acquired by the state under this section by
any  authority provided under law. Such instrument
may provide that such rights shall  become  vested
in  the United States of America in the event that
the state of Connecticut  attempts  to  terminate,
transfer  or  otherwise  divest itself of any such
rights without the prior  consent  of  the  United
States  Secretary  of  Agriculture  and payment of
consideration to the United States and may further
provide  that  title to such rights may be held by
the United States of America at any  time  at  the
request   of   the   United  States  Secretary  of
Agriculture. In connection with such an agreement,
the   commissioner  may  hold  the  United  States
harmless from any action based  on  negligence  in
the   procurement  or  management  of  any  rights
acquired under this section and  may  assure  that
proper  title  evidence is secured, that the title
is insured to the amount of the federal cost  paid
for  the  interest of the United States of America
and that, in the event of a failure of  title,  as
determined  by  a court of competent jurisdiction,
and payment of insurance to the state,  the  state
will reimburse the United States for the amount of
the federal cost paid.
    Sec. 2. This  act  shall  take effect from its
passage.

Approved June 24, 1997