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In response to growing problems of questionable conservation easements claiming a state income tax credit, House Bill 08-1353 was enacted to create state oversight of the conservation easement tax credit program. As a result, non-profit land trusts and governmental entities (also called conservation easement holders) must be certified by the Division of Real Estate (the Division) before the organization accepts a conservation easement for which a state tax credit will be claimed.
The purpose of the certification program is to establish minimum qualifications for holders that accept conservation easements generating a tax credit. To be certified, holders must meet minimum qualifications in five comprehensive categories: (1) organization; (2) conservation easement selection, review and approval; (3) stewardship practices and capacity; (4) finance; and (5) governance. Holders must renew their certification annually if they plan to accept a conservation easement for which a state tax credit will be claimed.
Below learn how to:
Initial certification has numerous requirements that may be confusing and overwhelming for a first-time applicant. The Division has provided a simple overview of the initial certification process in seven steps.
Don’t forget that holders may not accept a conservation easement for which a state tax credit is claimed if their certification has expired with the Division. Follow these four steps to renew your certification.
Application forms and project list templates associated with initial certification and renewal for holders.
The following nonrefundable fees associated with initial certification and renewal for conservation easement holders are in effect for the 2014 calendar year and are subject to change each year.
The Division must maintain an up-to-date listing of holders that have applied for certification along with their current status pursuant to section 12-61-720 (10) of the Colorado Revised Statutes. There are currently 41 certified organizations that can facilitate and hold conservation easements which generate a state income tax credit for 2014.
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