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America's Great Outdoors -- We Need Your Votes!

Advocates Alert: August 10, 2010

Over the past few months we've been telling you a great deal about the America's Great Outdoors Initiative--a golden opportunity to place private lands conservation and land trusts at the center of the Federal government's vision for the future of conservation.  Land trusts have responded in a big way, with hundreds turning out at listening sessions around the country, but we're falling behind in the online conversation and need your help to turn things around!

On the AGO "IdeaJam" website, you can vote for your favorite ideas.  And your vote is needed! For example, "Making the Enhanced Easement Incentive Permanent" has fallen from 1st place in votes to 250th place!  Large membership organizations advocating things like OHV access, wilderness designations, and national park staffing now dominate the IdeaJam conversation.  There aren't very many Land Trust ADVOCATES subscribers, but collectively land trusts have millions of individual supporters, easement donors and community partners. To get private lands conservation back in the picture, we need your help forwarding this alert and urging your members and supporters to vote!

Land trusts have already posted more than a dozen ideas on the IdeaJam--exactly the kinds of real world examples and collaborative strategies the administration is looking for.  We urge you to vote to "promote" each of these ideas and click their titles to comment--adding your own suggestions, examples and words of support:


We also encourage you to post your own ideas and local examples and use them to get your supporters excited about participating.  Add "land trusts" to your list of tags, when posting a new idea, editing one already online, or re-posting an archived idea, so it will appear when people click on the above link.

Spread the word! Whether it's a forward to a dozen board members, a post for your Facebook friends, or an email to everyone who gets your land trust's newsletter, no list is too big or too small.  Please just add a personal appeal and forward this email or promote this link today: http://tinyurl.com/landtrustideas.  You can also visit www.lta.org/greatoutdoors for other ways to get involved.

Several of the federal officials coordinating the America's Great Outdoors initiative know land trusts well and are predisposed to adapt federal policies to better support our work--but they can't help us if we don't show up!  Let's make the most of this unique opportunity!

Thanks for helping!

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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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