CCA works on estate tax legislation

Aug 21, 2009
by WLJ
CCA works on estate tax legislation

The Colorado Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) has been working diligently with Congressman Salazar and the California Cattlemen’s Association to get H.R. 3524, an estate tax exemption bill directed toward agriculture, introduced to legislation.

The “Family Farm Preservation and Conservation Estate Tax Act” (H.R. 3524) was introduced the end of July by Rep. Mike Thompson, D-CA, and was co-sponsored by Rep. John Salazar, D-CO. This bill would set exclusions from estate taxes for certain farmland so long as farmland use continues.

Additionally, the value of an estate would not include the value of land in qualified conservation easements. The estate tax exemption for farmland would result in paying taxes on the property that is not considered qualified farmland. Qualified farmland is any real property which is located in the U.S. and was used as a farm for agricultural purposes on the date of the decedent’s death.

However, if at any time after the decedent’s passing the heir disposes of any interest in the qualified farmland (other than passing it to a family member), or the land ceases to be used by the heir for farming purposes, there would be a recapture tax imposed.

The tax imposed would be the tax which would have been imposed on the estate of the decedent initially. The same principle is applied for qualified conservation easements.

“We feel that the health of our nation is very dependent on agricultural lands being retained in the hands of legitimate producers of food and fiber who genuinely care about their lands,” states CCA producers Reeves and Betsy Brown. “Estate taxes have, and will continue to decrease the number of real farmers/ranchers on their farms and ranches unless this bill is passed as is. Our national debt and balance of trade is so frightening, we would hope that keeping as much land in production as possible will at least help hold the level of importation of foods and fibers.”

H.R. 3524 is a very important piece of legislation and CCA asks you to contact your legislators and ask for their support of H.R. 3524 and to co-sponsor it. For more information, please contact the CCA office at 303/431-6422 or