A land trust is a local, regional, or national non-profit organization that protects land for its natural, recreational, scenic, historic, or productive value. Land trusts have varying conservation objectives. Some work in specific geographic areas or concentrate on protecting different natural or cultural features. Not all land trusts own property or conservation easements; some may be primarily educational entities or may broker deals between private landowners and public agencies. You can access a list of the 40 land trusts active in Texas on the Texas Land Trust Council website at www.texaslandtrustcouncil.org.
You may also download a brochure on what a conservation easement is here.
For a landowner to qualify for tax benefits, their conservation easement must be granted to either a government agency or a tax-exempt land trust. A land trust may be able to connect a landowner with legal, tax or natural resource professionals familiar with such easements. For information on these tax benefits, download the Land Trust Alliance brochure here.
Pines and Prairies Land Trust performs a variety of services in Central Texas. In addition to holding conservation easements, PPLT owns three preserves that the public can enjoy and provides educational resources for landowners. Some of these resources are available elsewhere on this website.