Conservation Easements and the Urge to Rule

from Fauquier Free Citizen

By Tom DeWeese

Conservation easements. The Green Mafia tells us this is the only way to save the family farm. Without its tax credits and restrictions on development rights, America will be paved over and Astroturf will replace sod. We’re in crisis, they tell us. However, as H.L Mencken once warned, “A plan to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule.”

pec_logoConservation and environmental groups openly advocate the conservation easements as the answer to saving farm land, as do state departments of agriculture, farm bureaus, and the federal government. A full court press is on to lock in millions of acres of private property under the blazing headline “Save the Family Farm.”

There’s no question that the family farm is under assault. Taxes, international trade agreements, inflation, and government regulations are eating away at the ability to keep the farm operating. I’ve never met a farmer who wanted to give up and stop working the land that perhaps his ancestors first acquired. In most cases it’s agony for a farmer to decide to sell his property. On the other hand, the land is his main asset. To provide a good life for the family, selling the land, many times to developers is necessary for survival.

However, there is now a much more lethal threat facing small farmers, and the outrageous fact is, this threat is being disguised as a way to help them. The real threat is the green solution – “conservation easements.” And farmers are falling into its trap across the country.

Read the rest at Fauquier Free Citizen: http://fauquierfreecitizen.com/conservation-easements-and-the-urge-to-rule/

 

Posted in Environment, Regulations
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