Senator Mark Udall passes over the easy solution and jumps right to the complicated one.
Legislation to help rural families avoid the pressure to sell, break up or develop their property by using conservation easements was introduced in the U.S. Senate last week.
The purpose of the law is to keep farms and ranches intact and in the family when handing it down to the next generation by changing the estate tax code to promote permanently conserving the land under easement.
A conservation easement is a voluntary agreement that permanently limits certain development on the land while allowing farming and ranching to continue.
Udall’s bill would raise the exclusion rate to 50 percent of the total value and cap it to $5 million, giving families tax relief when they choose to preserve portions of their lands for agricultural and conservation use.
The pressure that Udall and Mike Crapo are trying to solve comes from the amount of taxes a farming family has to pay when their land is passed down to the kids. This is know and the "Estate Tax". Rather than eliminate that tax, Udall and Crapo tie a marginal tax cut to a series of shoestrings that govern the use of their own land.
I don't know much about Crapo but I do know that Udall is always quick to find big government solutions. Also keep in mind that most of these farmers fall into the millionaire range that his base despises so much. In other words, this is a tax break for millionaires. Don't tell Occupy Denver.