Farm Bill Advocacy
The Texas Ag Land Trust works closely with state and national groups to advocate for policies that benefit privately-owned working lands. Not only do we work with the national Land Trust Alliance and the Texas Land Trust Council, we are also a member of the Partnership of Rangeland Trusts (PORT), a coalition of Western-states land trusts created by their state cattlemen’s associations, and we participate in the ad-hoc Agricultural Land Easement (ALE) Working Group. These groups are advocating for changes to the easement program found in the Farm Bill, known as the Agricultural Conservation Easement Program (ACEP), which provides funding for land trusts to purchase conservation easements on agricultural lands.
With Congress currently working on a new version of the Farm Bill, the Texas Ag Land Trust has participated in several recent briefings, town hall meetings, and Washington DC trips to make policymakers aware of changes that are needed to make the program work better for agricultural producers.
A full list of recommended reforms to ACEP for the 2018 Farm Bill can be found here. Our top priority is removal of a Matching Fund Requirement whereby a land trust must contribute cash from a non-federal source. With so few sources of conservation funding in Texas, this requirement disqualifies many viable land conservation projects that would help protect the state’s valuable agricultural lands.
We urge you to contact your US Representative and Senator to ask for their support! Click the button below to find your Congressman and Senator, and a sample letter can also be found here.