Elk NetworkRMEF Helps Secure Colorado Conservation Victory

General | May 23, 2024

Testimony provided by the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation helped persuade Colorado lawmakers to pass legislation (SB 126) that cements statewide conservation efforts.

“RMEF has been involved in land conservation efforts since our inception in 1984 and completed our first Colorado conservation easements in 1994. Conservation easements represent an invaluable tool for permanently protecting critical wildlife habitat,” Susanne Roller, RMEF senior land program manager, testified before a Colorado Legislature committee. “This legislation furthers conservation efforts and specifically the conservation of wildlife habitat in the state of Colorado.”

The Conservation Easement Income Tax Credit indefinitely extends the certified program that was on track to be eliminated in 2026. It also increases the conservation easement (CE) income tax credits available to donors in a calendar year from $45 million to $50 million and allows multiple transfers of CE income tax credits.

A CE is a voluntary but legal and binding agreement between a landowner and a given organization that limits uses of the land to protect its wildlife and conservation values.

RMEF holds 91 CEs in Colorado covering nearly 151,000 acres of conserved wildlife habitat. Over the last three years, every completed RMEF CE protected migration corridors for elk, mule deer and other wildlife or a combination of migration corridors and big game winter range.

Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed the bill into law on May 20, 2024.

(Photo source: Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation)