2013 Land Stewardship News

February 18, 2013

Farm Bill Update: The Agriculture Act of 2014 and Conservation

With the enactment of the Agriculture Act of 2014, known to most of us as the Farm Bill, landowners have more certainty about the availability of federal funds for conservation on farm and ranch lands. The Farm Bill provides up to $57 billion dollars over the next five years to support a variety of rural land conservation activities, including the dedication of conservation easements, and eliminates some of the complexity of the varied conservation programs.Read more from Braun & Gresham.

February 13, 2014

Hill Country Land Trust Acquires 685 Acre Easement in Gillespie County

“A wonderful diversity of native plants is found on this property, and many years of excellent wildlife and range management by the owners is evident,” says HCLT President, Katherine Peake. “But even more exciting to us is that this property contains habitat of the Golden-cheeked Warbler. We consider this easement one of HCLT’s crown jewels.” Read More

January 10, 2014

Bennett endowment to provide ongoing AgriLife Extension land stewardship programming

“We are excited about helping landowners protect their piece of Texas. In doing so, we believe other parts of the state will also benefit.” The first educational efforts to be made through the Bennett endowment will be the “Protecting the Legacy of the Edwards Plateau” conference, April 23-25 in Kerrville. Learn More

December 12, 2013

Texas Land Conservation Conference Set for Feb 26-28, 2014

Topics include conservation easement negotiation and amendment, bridge financing and other conservation funding issues, Texas water policy, legal issues, endangered species, conservation easement appraisals, conservation on agricultural lands, public-private partnerships for conservation, and much more. Learn More

September 6, 2013

Land for Water

Texas Land Conservancy announces “Land for Water,” a new conservation project focusing on the protection of 6 key watersheds: Llano, Pedernales, Medina, Lower Brazos, Lower Trinity, and Neches. Learn More

July 8, 2013

USDA and DOI Highlight Successes of Protecting Bird Habitat on Private Lands

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Interior Secretary Sally Jewell today announced the release of the State of the Birds 2013 Report on Private Lands. A collaborative effort as part of the U.S. North American Bird Conservation Initiative, involving federal and state wildlife agencies and scientific and conservation organizations, the report shows how private land conservation incentives positively impact bird habitat. Read More

June 10, 2013

NRCS in Texas Announces Incentive Payments to Improve Wildlife Habitat

USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) State Conservationist Salvador Salinas today announced that NRCS in Texas has $5.5 million in funding available for people who want to develop and improve wildlife habitat on their land through the agency’s Wildlife Habitat Incentives Program (WHIP). Learn More

April 30, 2013

Funding Available for Landowners

The Texas Landowner Incentive Program (LIP), administered by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department, offers cost-share funding to private landowners who wish to implement conservation practices that benefit wildlife, both upland and aquatic species and their habitats. Learn More

March 27, 2013

Barnes: George Cofer works to save open spaces

Cofer (head of the Hill Country Conservancy) has led the charge to snap up conservation easements in the Hill Country, allowing some private projects, thereby securing legal protection for other open space in perpetuity. Soon, his group will help break ground on Phase 2 of a grand project — the 30-mile Violet Crown Trail that will link the parks and greenbelts in Austin’s urban core toward a spine of Hill Country that arcs across the Barton Springs recharge zone. More from Statesman.com.

March 13, 2013

Cibolo Conservancy sets workshop to help families protect land, receive tax incentives

A workshop exploring how families can legally protect and preserve the legacy of their land – and be eligible for tax relief at the same time – will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday, April 3, at the Cibolo Nature Center & Farm auditorium. Learn More

February 20, 2013

Hill Country Land Trust Earns National Recognition

The Hill Country Land Trust has achieved land trust accreditation from the Land Trust Accreditation Commission, an independent program of the Land Trust Alliance. The Hill Country Land Trust’s accredited status demonstrates our commitment to permanent land conservation that benefits the entire community,” says John Huecksteadt, Hill Country Land Trust President. Learn More

February 12, 2013

How Hill Country Grazing Led to Cedar Fever in Texas

Grazing practices introduced to the Hill Country region in the late 19th century may be the cause of your cedar allergies. Read how from State Impact Texas.

January 15, 2013

Wildlife Tax Valuation Workshop

Do you have an agriculture tax valuation on your land? Are you interested in managing for wildlife? This in depth three-part seminar is especially for owners with more than 20 acres and emphasizes wildlife management strategies that improve native habitat and increase species diversity. Learn More

January 5, 2013

Fiscal Cliff Deal Renews Tax Incentive Through 2013

Congress has passed a fiscal cliff deal that renews the enhanced income tax deduction for conservation easements through 2013, and retroactive to the beginning of 2012. This incentive will help land trusts work with farmers, ranchers and other modest-income landowners to increase the pace of conservation by about a third. Learn more from the Land Trust Alliance here.