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Workshop scheduled for landowners looking to lease

Farmer, attorney join panel at Forest Grove UCC Jan. 25

Those with a few extra unruly acres on their hands no longer have to resort to their lawn mowers or hungry goats for help. That land could be leased to a local farmer to use and care for instead.

Adelante Mujeres, Dairy Creek Community Food Web and Friends of Family Farmers are hosting a workshop Jan. 25 for landowners that will cover all the basic questions and legal requirements for farm land lease agreements.

While farmers gain somewhere to set up shop, landowners not only receive compensation for the use of their land but sustainable farming practices encouraged in the workshop will also theoretically improve the land, according to Alejandro Tecum of Adelante Mujeres, a Forest Grove nonprofit.

Tecum helps teach sustainable agriculture students how to grow healthy food without a lot of chemicals or other harmful substances.

The workshop will feature Forest Grove resident Charlene Murdock, farmer Greg Malinowski and attorney Nellie McAdams.

Murdock grows much of her own food on her own land and is currently leasing a portion to Adelante Mujeres’ farming program participants. Malinowski serves as a Washington County Commissioner and has been farming and leasing his land out for 20 years.

McAdams will speak about lease negotiations, agreements about farming practices, record-keeping and problem solving. She’ll cover basic questions both sides should be asking, such as who’s responsible for payments or repairs that may come up and management responsibilities. She’ll bring up common problems that arise with dogs and other animals on the leased land.

McAdams, who works to connect farmers and landowners, said many farmers are not only looking for land but also mentorship. “Those situations can be really rewarding for everyone,” McAdams said.

“A lot of this stuff can be scary and intimidating but this just puts everything on the table so people can make the wisest decisions,” she added.

The workshop will be held from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 25, at the Forest Grove United Church of Christ, 2032 College Way. It is free and snacks are provided. RSVP to 503-992-0078, Ext. 302.

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