Center for a Better South. All rights reserved.
a Better South
P.O. Box 22261
Charleston, SC 29413
in the South is taking off. Any longtime resident knows that development
has transformed the South, often for the better. But both this generation
and those to follow next will need our natural infrastructure for recreation,
clean water, natural industries and the dramatic beauty of functioning
more tools at our disposal than ever before to manage and protect these
resources. With so much value to preserve, the South should take advantage
of this opportunity to lead through steady state investment in conservation,
assistance to local governments for conservation, and a favorable tax
structure for voluntary private efforts.
12: Every Southern state should boost dedicated revenue and bond funding
for land conservation to at least $1 per person per month, and should
maintain at least an acre of state parks for every 30 residents.
13: Southern states should provide incentives to encourage localities
to implement strategic countywide land conservation plans.
14: Southern states should emulate Virginia's encouragement of permanent
private land conservation through state tax credits that enhance federal
tax incentives for land preservation.
more and more people moving into the South, the region's land resources
are increasingly being threatened, developed or fragmented.
forests have the highest concentration of tree species diversity in
the U.S. and their streams, rivers, bottomlands and swamps have the
highest aquatic diversity in the continental U.S.
due to market conditions, private companies are starting to sell off
large forest and watershed landholdings, which makes them susceptible
to development and threatens the South's land traditions.
private organizations are increasing the amount of Southern protected
land, Southern states generally have a long way to go to protect land
for an increasingly populous and more urbanized society.
- By increasing
spending on land conservation through additional revenue streams, increased
bonded indebtedness or other tools, Southern states can protect the
traditional Southern link to special places.
also can partner with local governments in innovative ways to preserve
land for future generations.
also can consider improving tax incentives for private landowners to
protect more of their land.
As this chart from Chapter
6 highlights, Southerners generally spend less per capita on conservation
than the average person in the eastern United States.
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