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1 13 Easements & Land Use

1 13 Easements & Land Use






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    1 13 Easements & Land Use 1 13 Easements & Land Use Presentation Transcript

    • Natural Resources Government Agencies
    • Term: Easement
      • Define: Easement
      • Go to www.landtrustva.org
      • Go to the “About Conservation Easements” tab.
      • What does a conservation easement do?
    • Conservation Easements
      • Easement: A right held by someone to use land belonging to someone else for a specific purpose
      • Conservation Easements prevent a parcel of land from being developed
        • usually indefinitely
        • some are written for a specific period of time
      • Landowner maintains the title
      • If sold in the future, easement goes with the land
    • Sources of Easements
      • Private land trusts: usually land is donated
        • Land Trust of Virginia
        • Virginia Outdoors Foundation
        • The Nature Conservancy
      • Non-common Open Space: 85%
        • Required of subdivisions of 30 acres or greater in RA & RC zoned areas
      • PDR- County buys the right to develop
    • PDR
      • Purchase of Development Rights: Under a PDR program, a landowner voluntarily sells his/her rights to develop a parcel of land to a public agency or qualified conservation organization.
      • Owners sell the right to develop to raise cash or make improvements to property
      • Budget will be cut 50% next year
    • Who owns the land?
      • The original owner maintains title to the land
      • He sells (or donates) his right to develop it (break it into smaller parcels).
      • Putting any easement on land decreases its market value.
      • If you donate your land you write that loss off of your taxes
    • Process
      • Apply for PDR or Easement donation
      • Land is appraised
      • Land is accepted or declined based on likelihood of development
      • Requires legal expertise
      • Requires closing costs
      • Expenses are tax deductible
    • Advantages & Disadvantages
      • Land permanently preserved
      • May have financial benefits
      • Your property decreases in value
      • You can’t undo it if you change your mind
      • More complicated if you have a mortgage
      • Easement holder maintains right to monitor property
    • Agriculture Land Use Valuation
      • Special property tax rates for land used for agriculture or forestry
      • Tax rate is based on “use” rather than market value
      • Taxes deferred annually (apply in Jan & Feb)
      • If you sell or stop producing you owe “rollback” taxes – difference between the use tax and the assessment tax rate
    • Types
      • Forestry – minimum 20 acres forested
        • Must have 40% stockage:
          • 400 seedlings or 21 trees 15” dbh per acre
          • Or inaccessible or adverse site
      • Agriculture/Horticulture – min of 5 acres
        • Must have been in production for 5 years
        • Must have sales averaging over $1,000/yr for the last 3 years
        • Minimum of animal units per acre per month
    • Cost share programs
      • Funded by the 2008 Farm Bill
      • Managed by the local Soil & Water Conservation Districts, the Department of Forestry, and the USDA
    • CREP – Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program
      • Shares cost of planting riparian buffers along streams
      • Fencing livestock out of riparian areas
      • Building alternative livestock water access
      • Pays 75% - 100% of costs
      • Continuous sign-up
    • CRP – Conservation Reserve Program
      • Plant long term cover crops on highly erodible land
      • Pays cost share of the cover crop or forest
      • Pays rent on the land
      • Fixed sign-up periods
      • Make a contract for 10 – 15 years
      • Cropland must have been in production for 2 of the 5 most recent years
    • Conservation Security Program (CSP) & Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP )
      • Financially rewards stewardship and sustainability
      • Only for lands in priority watersheds
      • Land must be in use for livestock or crop production
      • Contract payments are made for conservation treatments or practices