Action needed on federal conservation bill


Lee’s note: My apologies, folks. This one got away from me. I’ve been slammed hard by a couple projects and should have posted this yesterday when it was released.

This is a fantastic piece of legislation that would make donating tracts of land for conservation much, much easier.

The powerful U.S. House Ways and Means Committee is scheduled to consider this bill today.

Here’s the belated release from the National Shooting Sports Foundation:

Urge Your Representative to Support H.R. 2807
Encourage Landowners to Make Conservation Donations

Call your U.S. Representative to seek his or her support for the Conservation Easement Incentive Act (H.R. 2807) which is scheduled to be consideredwaysmeansbanner by the U.S. House Ways and Means Committee tomorrow (Thursday, May 29).

This important legislation will provide permanent tax incentives to family farmers, ranchers and other landowners who make conservation donations that benefit wildlife, enhance hunting, fishing and shooting access and keep working lands working and intact.

Currently, landowners who make conservation-related donations can deduct the fair market value of their donation, up to 30 percent of their adjusted gross income, in the year of the donation and over a subsequent 5 year carry-forward period.

By increasing the cap to 50 percent for all donors, removing the cap for farmers and ranchers and extending the carry forward period to 15 years, the enhanced deductions afford “land rich, cash poor” farmers and ranchers the same deductions, for the same donations, that high income donors already receive under the tax code.

In short, the enhanced deductions remedy an inequity in the tax code by leveling the playing field for lower income donors. First enacted in 2006, the enhanced deductions expired at the end of 2013 despite far reaching bipartisan support for their continuation.

Permanent authorization of these important deductions is a cost-effective way to facilitate voluntary, private-sector alternatives to government led conservation efforts while also making the tax system fairer and simpler for family farmers, ranchers and forest owners.

Call the U.S. House switchboard (202) 224-3121 today and Thursday to be connected to your U.S. Representative.


About Author

Lee Williams can’t remember a time in his life when he wasn’t shooting. Before becoming a journalist, Lee served in the Army and worked as a police officer. He’s earned more than a dozen journalism awards as a reporter, and three medals of valor as a cop. He is an NRA-certified law enforcement firearms instructor, an avid tactical shooter and a training junkie. When he’s not busy as a senior investigative reporter, he is usually shooting his AKs, XDs and CZs. If you don’t run into him at a local gun range, you can reach him at 941.284.8553, by email, or by regular mail to 1777 Main St., Sarasota, FL 34236. You can follow him on Twitter: @HT_GunWriter and on Facebook @The Gun Writer.

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