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A Critical Week for the Easement Incentive

Advocates Alert: September 5, 2012

Thank you to all the land trusts that made the most of August recess with site visits, in-district meetings, and personal contact with legislators all around the country.

When Congress returns on Monday, they'll be in Washington for just 8 days before the election. Your follow-up with staff over the next few days is critical to ensuring that your legislators follow through in support of your priorities.

Senate: S. 339 Co-sponsors are Key to Renewing the Tax Incentive

As Hill staffers put together memos of decision points for their returning bosses, your timely calls can ensure that S. 339 and H.R. 1964 are on their minds -- it could be our last chance to secure their public support before tax issues are debated in the post-election session of Congress.

Unless you hail from Colorado, Connecticut, Mississippi, Montana, or Rhode Island, we're still missing at least one of your senators -- and there are still 34 co-sponsors of identical legislation in previous years, who haven't yet renewed their support. Please call today:

If it comes up, please share the great news that an extension of the easement incentive (through 2013) was included in the Senate Finance Committee’s tax "extenders" bill. However, House leaders have said they don't plan to consider tax issues until after the election. Whether an extension is ultimately considered as part of that Senate bill or some other year-end package, the best way you can demonstrate support for the incentive is by seeking co-sponsors for S. 339, our stand-alone bill to make it permanent.

House: Focus on Passing the Farm Bill

The Farm Bill expires October 1, but House leaders remain reluctant to bring it up for a vote. They fear that many in their own party will oppose it for not cutting enough from food stamps and other nutrition programs, while many Democrats will oppose it for cutting too much. As reported previously, we think the House bill is a good deal for conservation and hope you will urge your Representative to support it. Click here for talking points.

One Week Left to Register for Rally

Wednesday, September 12 is the pre-registration deadline for Rally 2012 in Salt Lake City, UT, September 29 - October 2. Click here to register.

The National Land Conservation Conference is a great opportunity to advance your land trust's advocacy skills -- check out our list of two dozen opportunities to learn about policy. In particular, we'd like to highlight:

Seminar 13: Advocating for Conservation
Saturday, September 29, 9:00am -- 5:00pm
$150 (member) / $180 (non-member)
Sticker shock? Scholarships may be available. Contact policy@lta.org.

Please Welcome Public Policy Associate Bryan David

We're excited to introduce the latest member of our public policy team. Bryan David, comes to the Alliance with experience in the offices of his local Congressman Mike Thompson (D-CA), Congressman Ike Skelton (D-MO), and New Partners, a political consulting and fundraising firm. Bryan will work on all aspects of our policy work, but with a particular focus on cultivating the advocacy capacity of the land trust community. If you're ever seeking the latest information and materials on our policy priorities, please don't hesitate to contact Bryan at 202-800-2223 or bdavid@lta.org.

See you in Salt Lake City!

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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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Congress wrestles with tax breaks for open space

July 29, 2014 | Poughkeepsie Journal | NY

House passes Gerlach conservation tax break bill, now up to Senate

July 18, 2014 | The Mercury News | Pottstown, PA

The Time is Now for Congress to Act on Conservation

July 15, 2014 | Politico | Washington, D.C.

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