Fremont Motors is a huge supporter of the work of the Land Trust. We thank them for their donation of the use of a 2012 Dodge Ram truck. Use of the truck allows the Land Trust to save on rental car fees and makes for travel throughout the state of Wyoming safer and more efficient for our staff.
Board Member Dr. John Lunt met with a group of post-graduate students from Yale to discuss conservation.
This engaging group of post-graduate students in wildlife management has world-wide experience from across the U.S. to South America, Africa, and Asia. They were intrigued with the concept that large well-run working ranches, managed for profit, and just by their nature, provide more biodiversity than most National Parks and nature preserves; “You just can’t see ‘em from the road” (Chris LeDeux). We also discussed the successful role of land trusts in the west in helping perpetuate this agricultural heritage through the use of agricultural conservation easements and succession planning.
A record number of land trust leaders stormed Capitol Hill for nearly 200 meetings on the third annual Land Trust Alliance Advocacy Day. The timing could not have been better – while we were there, Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden (OR) released a package of expired tax provisions to be marked up that did not include the conservation tax incentive. Fortunately, Land Trust advocates were there to speak with members of the Finance Committee to co-sponsor an amendment to include the incentive by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (MI). It worked! Land Trust leaders across the country will continue working to keep the enhanced tax incentives a viable option for family ranchers and farmers.
Executive Director Pam Dewell attended Wyoming Wednesday and met with Senators Enzi and Barrasso and Congressman Cynthia Lummis and their wonderful DC-based staff members, Travis Jordan, Travis McNiven and Becky Cole. We are greatly appreciative of their good work on behalf of the state of Wyoming.
Wyoming Congressman Cynthia Lummis addressed members of Congress and staff at a policy briefing hosted by the Land Trust Alliance on Capitol Hill last week. As a past board member of the Stock Growers Land Trust, Representative Lummis understands and supports private land conservation and has joined a bipartisan group of nearly 200 Members of Congress who have co-sponsored bills to make the enhanced conservation easement tax incentives permanent. The enhanced incentive helps landowners of modest means choose conservation by:
Without the enhanced easement incentive, an agricultural landowner earning $50,000 a year who donated a conservation easement worth $1 million could take a total of no more than $90,000 in tax deductions. Under the enhanced incentive, that landowner can take as much as $800,000 in tax deductions – still less than the full value of their donation, but a significant increase. This provides a significant tool for working families in estate planning and passing family lands on to the next generation of Wyoming producers