Conservation Easements – Not A Positive Force in Virginia – Week 2

As a true believer in free market capitalism being the best way to allocate resources, I would like to provide you a very brief summary of some of the most serious negatives associated with Conservation Easement Tax Credits. Here is the first of the six worse negatives:

Conservation Easements are “in perpetuity”:

The significance of “in perpetuity” is best illustrated by the fact that if Captain John Smith had claimed the new land of Virginia (when he put his foot on the ground in Jamestown in 1607) for the Queen of England and then immediately placed a conservation easement on the new land, there would not be one home, road, utility system, etc. built in Virginia in the last 412 years.

Just like Captain John Smith, none of us today can see what use of land will be necessary for Virginian’s to prosper in 50 years, 100 years, much less 400 years in the future. “In perpetuity” is a dangerously long time.