07.11.19

Daines Bill Set to Generate $6.6 Billion in Federal Revenue

Bill will protect conservation easement program, prevent abuse from bad actors

U.S. SENATE– U.S. Senator Steve Daines today announced his bill, the Charitable Conservation Easement Program Integrity Act of 2019, will generate $6.6 Billion in federal revenue, according to the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Tax, by restoring integrity back to the conservation program.

“My bipartisan bill will protect this critical conservation tool by stopping abuse from bad actors,” Daines said. “The massive $6.6 billion revenue estimate shows that, despite previous IRS guidance, abuses have continued and it demonstrates the need to bring integrity back to this program so it can be used for years to come.”

The bill limits qualifying conservations contributions, used for tax deductions, to those transactions that do not exceed 2.5 times (250%) of the partner’s adjusted basis. The bill excludes family owned partnerships from the proposal.

The U.S. Senate Finance Committee, which Daines sits on, is currently investigating conservation easement abuses by bad actors.

Statements of Support:

“Clearly a small number of bad actors are abusing the concept of charitable donations and also abusing US taxpayers, and clearly Congress needs to pass S. 170, The Charitable Conservation Easement Program Integrity Act. Thanks to Senator Daines for leading this congressional effort and thanks to the Land Trust Alliance for making S.170 a national land trust priority.” - Glenn Marx, Executive Director, Montana Association of Land Trusts

“This revenue estimate uses the best available data to illustrate how dramatically taxpayers have been bilked by bad actors abusing a system our nation established to encourage charitable giving. The nearly $7 billion estimate represents the known amount of abuse since 2016. If even more abuse comes to light, that number will surely grow. While the IRS has made combatting abusive deals an enforcement priority, congressional action is urgently needed. We applaud Senator Daines for introducing the Charitable Conservation Easement Program Integrity Act, which will effectively shut down these egregious transactions and stop this drain on the U.S. treasury. This bipartisan legislation is fair, it is reasonable and, as we see from the revenue estimate, it is essential to safeguard taxpayers from these bad actors.” - Andrew Bowman, President & CEO, The Land Trust Alliance 

Background: 

On January 17th, 2019, Daines introduced the bipartisan Charitable Conservation Easement Program Integrity Act of 2019.

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