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Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) - Bruce Wells


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Bruce Wells, USDA-NRCS

Published in: Economy & Finance
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Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) - Bruce Wells

  1. 1. Leaving a Legacy with Conservation Easements What’s in it for You! 1 Natural Resources Conservation Service Bruce K. Wells Assistant State Conservationist for Water Resources Salina State Office
  2. 2. Conservation Easement Definition 2 A conservation easement is a restriction placed on a piece of property to protect its associated resources.
  3. 3. - Easement Programs have been around for 20+ years in some cases -Emergency Wetlands Reserve Program (EWRP) -Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) -Emergency Watershed Protection Program─Floodplain Easement (EWPP─FPE) -Grassland Reserve Program (GRP) -Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program (FRPP) 3 Historical Perspective of NRCS Easement Programs
  4. 4. - Interest in easements by private landowners - Has always been a voluntary program - In 2003, FRPP easements and selected GRP easements available for eligible entity financial assistance - NRCS holds easements for WRP and GRP 4 Historical Perspective of NRCS Easement Programs (cont.)
  5. 5. Easement Programs • Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program (FRPP), Grassland Reserve Program (GRP), and Wetlands Reserve Program (WRP) have been repealed • Consolidated into Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) • States will continue to monitor and manage GRP and WRP easements • Existing easement deeds remain valid 6
  6. 6. Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) 7 Farm and Ranch Lands Protection Program Grassland Reserve Program Wetlands Reserve Program
  7. 7. ACEP • ACEP has 2 components • Agricultural Land Easement Component (ALE) • Eligible entities implement and hold easements • Wetland Reserve Easement Component (WRE) • NRCS implements and holds easements 8
  8. 8. 9 ACEP-ALE Helps farmers and ranchers keep their land in agriculture. Protects grazing uses by conserving rangeland, pastureland, and shrub land.
  9. 9. Protecting Your Land • Allows for agricultural uses of the property • Establishes prohibited actions to the land 10
  10. 10. Determining Easement Value for ACEP-ALE 11 Appraisal of the property Before Appraised value - After Appraised value = Easement Value
  11. 11. Agricultural Land Easements • Landowners need to work with a Land Trust that can hold, monitor and enforce conservation easements in Kansas. • The Natural Resources Conservation Service provides financial assistance to the Land Trust to acquire the Conservation Easement from the landowner. 12
  12. 12. 13 ACEP-WRE Provides assistance to landowners to restore, protect, and enhance wetlands.
  13. 13. Determining Easement Value for ACEP-WRE 14 Lesser of: -Appraised Fair Market Value -Geographic Area Rate Cap -Landowner Offer
  14. 14. 15
  15. 15. Warranty Easement Deed • Title to the land • Quiet enjoyment • Control of access • Undeveloped recreational uses • Subsurface resources • Water rights and water uses • Reserved rights grazing 16 Reserved Rights
  16. 16. Easement Boundaries 17
  17. 17. Conservation Planning • Agricultural Land Easement Plan • Wetland Reserve Plan of Operations 18
  18. 18. Tax Implications – Easement payment is taxable income – Like kind exchange possibilities (1031 exchange) – Installment payments – Landowner donation for tax deductions – Kansas Statute 79-1476 19
  19. 19. 20
  20. 20. FRPP ALE map of state 21
  21. 21. Questions ?? 23
  22. 22. Nondiscrimination Statement • In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity, in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA (not all bases apply to all programs). Remedies and complaint filing deadlines vary by program or incident. • Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the responsible Agency or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English. • To file a program discrimination complaint, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online at and at any USDA office or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call 866) 632-9992 • Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: (1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights 1400 Independence Avenue, SW Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; (2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or (3) email: