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House Passes Incentive Extension Too Late for Senate Action, Listening Sessions in MT & CA

Advocates Alert: May 28, 2010

Today, the House finally passed a one-year extension of the enhanced easement incentive, but the Senate has already left town, so further action will be delayed at least until the week of June 7th.

JUNE 8 UPDATE: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has introduced a new version of the "Extenders" Bill that still contains all the provisions we care about. He has called for a vote on Wednesday, June 9th, but that could easily be pushed back if he lacks enough votes. Regardless, changes to the House bill will require a new House vote and additional delays. We'll let you know if the Senate acts!

House Passes "Extenders" Bill, but Senate May Insist on Changes

In a week of dramatic negotiations, House Democratic leaders put together and tried out a variety of tax packages, costing between $135 and $190 billion, but these huge packages united the opposition of fiscal conservatives and opponents to specific components of the package.  Today, House leaders finally found a strategy that worked--splitting up the package into several pieces.  One-year extensions of the enhanced easement incentive, S-Corp fix and IRA Charitable Rollover were all included in H.R. 4213, which passed this afternoon by a vote of 215 to 204.

Unfortunately, today's vote came far too late for Senate action before the Memorial Day Recess (May 29-June 7). While an extension of unemployment benefits, expiring June 1st, remains part of H.R. 4213, the urgency of this week's negotiations appears to be gone.  Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has already announced that the Senate will consider changes to the package, which would require a third round of House votes and even more delay.

Members of Congress will be back in their districts this week and we hope you’ll have an opportunity to attend their public events and convey the pain and frustration of the expired incentive.  Urge them to enact the "extenders" bill as soon as possible.

Thanks for all you've done to get us this far; we'll keep you informed every step of the way.

America's Great Outdoors Listening Sessions in Montana and California

The Obama Administration has announced the first listening sessions of the America's Great Outdoors Initiative:

  • Montana : June 2nd, 9-11 a.m. in Helena, Missoula and Bozeman (click each city for details)
  • California : July 8th in Los Angeles (Details TBA)

If one of these sessions is in your region, we strongly suggest that you organize a group to attend and promote the potential of working with land trusts.  Please see our America's Great Outdoors talking points for specific advice.

No sessions near you?  Don't worry; more will be announced soon, but there are several ways you can get involved right now!  Please visit our Americas Great Outdoors webpage for links to provide feedback.  We don't know what they'll choose to emphasize, so please try out each of these tools.

Thanks for helping!

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Advocates Alerts

July 17: The House just voted 277-130 to pass the charities package! 56 Democrats joined their Republican colleagues to support charitable giving incentives, including the enhanced easement incentive - the second-highest number of defections after the research and development tax credit. Several others spoke on the floor in support of the conservation easement incentive, and other favorable charitable incentives. Thank you to organizations like Ducks Unlimited, CSF and others that reached out to Congressional offices over the last few days or alerted their membership of this important vote. Now, we pivot to the Senate.
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