Senate staffers tour Idaho conservation easement

On Aug. 7, Ducks Unlimited met with two of Sen. Mike Crapo's (ID) key staff members; representatives of the Southern Idaho Land Trust (SILT); and John Shaw, owner of Hagerman Wings Farm (HWF), in Hagerman, Idaho, to discuss the merits of tax incentives associated with donated conservation easements.

DU Biologist Chris Colson, the SILT team and Shaw led Michael Quickel, senior policy advisor, and A.J. Church, regional director, on a tour showcasing the Hagerman easement. DU, Shaw and SILT partnered to secure a grant for the easement, which was funded by the North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA). The grant allowed DU to purchase the easement on HWF land for SILT. As a result, Shaw was able to benefit from tax incentives afforded by the charitable donation of the remaining value of the easement.

The time spent with Sen. Crapo's staff members gave Colson and other DU staff the opportunity to promote the benefits of the enhanced easement incentives, and the waterfowl habitat they contribute to the region, as they relate to the trend of parceling and developing large family farms and ranches in southern Idaho.