VISION ACTION TEAM: Chaffee County has a sustainable agricultural community, open rural landscapes, and growth concentrated in and around towns.
The team will create community solutions, programs and plans so that in 2030 and beyond, Chaffee County will have a sustainable agricultural community and open rural landscapes, with growth concentrated in and around towns.
In the Envision Chaffee Survey completed by more than 1,200 residents, 97% of community members indicated that working agriculture is important to our quality of life. These private lands support open views, wildlife, the economy, the community’s heritage, and help keep water rights local. However, one-third of the county’s working lands have been lost since 1982. Meanwhile, 62% of new single family homes were built in the unincorporated areas of the county in the last decade. Local ranchers identify multiple challenges to keep their lands in production: conflicts with growing population; restrictions limiting ability to develop new revenue streams; water rights protections; and workforce limitations. Protecting working lands and open spaces, and finding ways to focus new development in and around towns, is urgent and critical to maintain the vibe that makes Chaffee County special.