Purchase of Agricultural Conservation Easement (PACE) Program

The County of San Diego has an agricultural conservation program known as the Purchase of Agricultural Conservation Easement (PACE) Program. The PACE Program promotes the long term preservation of agriculture in the County of San Diego.

Under the PACE Program, willing agricultural property owners are compensated for placing a perpetual easement on their property that limits future uses to agriculture. As a result, the agricultural land is preserved and the property owner receives compensation making the land’s continued use for agriculture more viable.

Program Contact:  Stephanie Neal | AgConservation@sdcounty.ca.gov | (858) 505-6677



The County’s Climate Action Plan (CAP) Measure T-1.2 identifies the expansion of the PACE Program in order to achieve GHG reduction goals by preserving 443 acres of agricultural lands annually. The County has developed proposed updates and expansions to the PACE Program, which includes proposed eligibility criteria to provide this opportunity to a larger group of agricultural landowners beyond those who experienced a density reduction during the 2011 General Plan Update and an update to the ranking criteria used for easement selection. Ranking criteria alternatives have also been identified for the Board of Supervisors’ consideration and direction; the alternatives presented, when implemented, emphasize various benefits of the PACE Program when selecting applicants to participate.

We want to hear from you! As a member of the community, your questions, suggestions, and comments about the proposed changes and, in particular, the ranking criteria alternatives identified are important to the County.

A public outreach period was held for the proposed changes to the PACE Program Guidelines from November 16 to December 18, 2020 to collect feedback for discussions with the Board of Supervisors in Spring 2021. The County held meetings with public agencies and other interested members of the public. Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) public health emergency, the County held public meetings to discuss the proposed updates to the PACE Program Guidelines via Zoom webinar on December 2 and 15, 2020.

Click Here to View Webinar Video (December 2)

Click Here to View Webinar Video 2 (December 15)

Staff will continue to provide project updates as they become available, through the stakeholder email list and through this project web page. We anticipate presenting the proposed PACE Guidelines, ranking options, and the input received to the Board of Supervisors in Spring 2021.