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Ask Your Delegation to Co-sponsor, Get Congressional Directories

Advocates Alert: March 15, 2011

Note: This special Advocates alert included congressional directory information with issue staff email addresses for each state. If you’d like a copy of your state’s directory, please email policy@lta.org. We plan to send updated contact information to Advocates subscribers frequently, so please sign-up today.

(Re)introduce Yourself to Your Congressional Delegation

You have a compelling story to tell.  Your passionate members and the landowners you work with are their constituents!  There’s no better time than the present to (re)introduce yourself to your members of Congress and their staff members working on tax and conservation issues -- especially if they are among the 107 NEW members or one of hundreds of new staff members. If you need guidance, try adapting our sample letter of introduction, then forward it with personal e-mails to staff.

This is also a great time to invite legislators and staff to come visit some of the places you've conserved. The House is only in session an average of ten days a month! The rest of the time, including next week, they're back in the district meeting with constituents, so take the time to show them what you do. Our guide to hosting site visits includes sample materials and a list of upcoming recesses.

Ask Your Senators and Rep to Co-sponsor Easement Incentive Legislation

Our top legislative priority this year is to prevent the enhanced tax incentive for conservation easement donations from expiring on December 31, 2011!  Please ask your senators and rep to co-sponsor new legislation in the 112th Congress to make the easement incentive permanent:

  • Urge Representatives to become original co-sponsors of the Conservation Easement Incentive Act, to be introduced by Reps. Jim Gerlach (R-PA) and Mike Thompson (D-CA). They can sign on by contacting Lori Prater Rep. Gerlach's office at 5-4315 or Carla McNeill in Rep. Thompson's office at 5-3311.
  • Urge Senators to co-sponsor the Rural Heritage Conservation Extension Act, S. 339, introduced by Senators Max Baucus (D-MT) and Charles Grassley (R-IA). They can sign on by contacting Tiffany Smith of the Finance Committee at 4-4515.

We encourage you to call first, then follow-up with additional materials and local anecdotes by e-mail. Click here for new fact sheets and talking points, including new House and Senate coalition letters signed by 64 agriculture, conservation and sporting organizations.

The following directory indicates if each member was a co-sponsor of identical legislation the 111th Congress. If so, be sure to thank them when asking for their support this year, but past co-sponsors do need to sign-on again in the new Congress.

The original alert had directory information here. Please email policy@lta.org for your state’s list.

Thanks for helping!

P.S. -- There are just two weeks left to respond to the 2010 National Land Trust Census. This detailed survey, completed once every five years, provides critical information for our policy work. To respond, please visit: www.lta.org/census by March 31.

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Advocates Alerts

February 12: The House successfully voted 279-137, demonstrating a supermajority (67%) of support, on H.R. 644, a package of charitable incentives including the conservation tax incentive.Now we need your help in the Senate to secure co-sponsors! Sens. Heller and Stabenow have requested land trusts’ assistance in asking senators to cosponsor S. 330, the Conservation Easement Incentive Act. Learn more »

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