Definition of Farmer and the granting of Ag Exemptions from Building Codes and Zoning Ordinances

The Revised Scott County Zoning Ordinance definition of farmer and farming describes how the granting of an ag-exemption is determined by Scott County. It results in a two fold test. First, an individual must demonstrate that he or she is actively involved in a day to day farming operation and derives income from a farming operation or is retired from farming. Second, the buildings and land must also be primarily adapted and used for agricultural purposes. A request would have to meet both these requirements before being considered ag-exempt. It does not allow a farmer to construct non-ag buildings or use his or her land for non-ag purposes unless they comply with zoning regulations. It would also require zoning compliance for a building or land used for ag purposes if the owner does not meet the definition of farmer.

In order to be considered exempt from the Scott County Zoning Ordinance and building codes a farmer is requested to apply for and be granted an ag-exemption certificate.

Farmers are not exempt from floodplain development or subdivision regulations.


  • FARM: A tract of land primarily adapted and used for agricultural purposes.
  • FARMER: A person or persons actively engaged in farming or someone who is retired from farming when it relates to the land the farmer formerly farmed.