Monday, December 9, 2013

Golf Courses and Conservation Easements

Over the weekend the listserves for land trusts were abuzz with the validity of conservation easements on golf courses due to a New York Times Op-Ed piece.  Apparently the NYT thinks that conservation easements on golf courses should not be eligible for the conservation easement deduction.  Seems like class warfare extends even to the out-of-doors.  For some reason they believe golf courses are the domain of the privileged, the affluent, and those evil with such wealth shouldn't be given a "tax-break".  I beg to differ.  The grand standing on important issues like the environment needs to stop.


We must all recognize that easements are a voluntary action for which the ONLY incentive is the income tax deduction.  I cannot accommodate the notion that conservation easements are a "cost" to the government or tax payers - if we want to argue about costs, benefits, value to the tax payers there are much much bigger issues to address than conservation.  the CE  choice made by the benefitting taxpayer costs them far more than the value of the incentive - it is forever - the value of the highest and best use has nothing to do with the centuries of benefit in the future.  central park is a great example of the long term benefit of greenspace.  We need to band together and demand more incentives, not gripe about who gets them.  It took Rockefeller thirty years and the threat of development to convince government of the value of jackson hole.  Seems like we ought to be beyond this by now - conservation easement incentives approximate less than a thousandth of a percent of the federal budget - less than 2 hours a year of government spending if you must view them as an "expenditure", which they are not.  We don't work for the government, what we pay them is an informed consent and by common agreement.  We all agreed over 40 years ago we could choose to give away our stuff and deduct it from our income.  If someone chooses to give away their building rights on a golf course that is their right - and the cockaded woodpeckers who particularly enjoy the open habitat next to their homes are grateful I'm sure.

11 comments:


  1. Do you mind if I quote a few of your articles as long as I provide credit and sources back to your weblog? My blog is in the very same niche as yours and my users would really benefit from a lot of the information you present here. Please let me know if this ok with you. Regards! gmail email login

    ReplyDelete
  2. The ascent in the ubiquity and utilization of team building has paralleled the developing impression of work as the yield of teams of laborers as opposed to as compartmentalized undertakings on a sequential construction system. Skillsfuture courses

    ReplyDelete
  3. I know your expertise on this. I must say we should have an online discussion on this. Writing only comments will close the discussion straight away! And will restrict the benefits from this information. penny stocks

    ReplyDelete
  4. Brilliantly composed article, if just all bloggers offered the same substance as you, the web would be a far superior spot.. golf swing basics

    ReplyDelete
  5. When your hand is placed under the golf grip (facing the sky), or on top of it (facing the ground), you will in all probability alter the swing plane direction as you swing back away from the ball. Masters golf live stream

    ReplyDelete
  6. First You got a great blog .I will be interested in more similar topics. i see you got really very useful topics, i will be always checking your blog thanks. Ryder Cup 2020 Schedule

    ReplyDelete
  7. Pretty good post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog posts. Any way I’ll be subscribing to your feed and I hope you post again soon. Grumpy Gopher

    ReplyDelete
  8. At Stickiewicket she chips away at Online cricket score,Cricket Records,RR vs CSK Live Score & Live Streaming Guide

    ReplyDelete
  9. In this arrangement, you'll still make monthly premiums. mortgage payment calculator canada It is simply financing that you decide to use purchase your house. canada mortgage calculator

    ReplyDelete
  10. Many professional golfers, including Nick Faldo, wait until they hear the sound of the ball hitting the bottom of the cup or know the ball has definitely missed the cup before looking up. It's a good way to force yourself to keep your head down. golf ball cannon

    ReplyDelete
  11. In depth golf tips on how the golfer will find his own personal golf swing. The reason why it is always better to hit the golf ball with speed instead of force. A lesson on how to find a more smooth golf swing. Allgolfreviews

    ReplyDelete

ShareThis