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[ft-l] Raid on Source of Conservation Land Funding



Hello All

The Nature Conservancy has sent out an alert that there is a move in the
Florida House to shift documentary stamp taxes to fund the general budget
rather than for the acquisition of land for recreation and conservation.
Please see the below alert.  House Bill 1793 would remove the source of
funding the state relies upon to buy land that may help us complete the
Florida National Scenic Trail.  Please call your State Representative to
tell them to vote against House Bill 1793.  Thanks.

Kent
**************************************************************************************************

Kent L. Wimmer, AICP
Florida National Scenic Trail Liaison
Florida Trail Association, Inc.
kwimmer@fs.fed.us
(850) 523-8576 (w)
(850) 523-8578 (fax)
(850) 386-8442 (h)
Mailing address:
USDA Forest Service
National Forests in Florida
325 John Knox Rd, F-100
Tallahassee, FL 32303-4160
**************************************************************************************************




----- Forwarded by Kent Wimmer/NONFS/USDAFS on 04/03/2003 03:29 PM -----

                      Phyllis Anderson
                      <phyllism@comcas         To:      <Undisclosed-Recipient:;@fs.fed.us;>
                      t.net>                   cc:
                                               Subject: Action Alert #4 - 4/3/03
                      04/03/2003 05:26
                      PM






 THE FLORIDA CONSERVATION ACTION NETWORK
THE NATURE CONSERVANCY ACTION FUND

TO:           Florida Conservation Action Network Grassroots Supporters
FROM:     Sue Mullins and Phyllis Anderson
DATE:      April 3, 2003

ACTION ALERT

<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office"
/>House Scheduled to Vote on Diverting Environmental Trust Fund Dollars on
Friday, April 4th

ALL MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE SHOULD BE CONTACTED AND ASKED TO VOTE AGAINST THE
BILL

HB 1793 terminates the dedication of documentary stamp revenues to many
environmental trust funds, and permanently diverts those monies to General
Revenue.  The bill is scheduled for a vote this Friday, April 4.

All members of the House should hear from their constituents about this
bill and what it will do to the trust funds.  The most effective way to get
through will be by phone, but e-mail also should be sent.  If you cannot
speak to your representative, speak to an aide and leave a specific message
that the representative should vote against HB 1793.

Don't know your all of your representatives?  on the Internet, go to:
http://www.flsenate.gov/data/legislators/local_delegations.pdf .  The PDF
file lists delegations alphabetically by county.  Make a note of the House
Members (Rep.) for your county delegation.  Next, go to
http://www.myfloridahouse.com and on the links listed on the left, click on
"Representatives."  The Representatives will then be listed alphabetically
by name.  Clicking on the name will provide all contact information.  In
addition to the House members in your local delegation, you may want to
share your message with House leadership, even if they are not from your
district.

THE MESSAGE:
1.  The documentary stamp has been increased twice, with the increases
promised to permanently link conservation of Florida's natural resources to
the growth and development that puts pressure on those natural resources.
If documentary stamp taxes are diverted into general revenue, that linkage
will be broken forever and the documentary stamp tax will simply be another
tax.

2.  Protection of Florida's natural areas and proper management of those
areas are vital to the state's natural resources, agriculture, water
supply, recreation, and tourism.

3.  Breaking the linkage between development and conservation is a terrible
legacy for Florida and in the long run will compromise the protection of
the state's natural resources.

4.  HB 1793 is not the way to balance the State's budget-- vote against the
bill.