Current use law now protects ecologically sensitive land

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Many wetlands and other ecologically sensitive areas are expected to have greater protections under a new law allowing land owners to enroll those parcels in the state’s tax-reducing current use program.

A bill signed into law this week by Governor Jim Douglas allows land owners to enroll larger portions of non-working land like wetlands in the current use program. It removes a 20 percent cap on the amount of non-working land that can be enrolled in current use.

The underlying current use law allows property to be taxed at its use value, what it earns for the property owner as farm or forest land, rather than at the value that it would command on the open market.

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