Time to Take Action
Our Klamath Basin Water Crisis
Upholding rural Americans' rights to grow food,
own property, and caretake our wildlife and natural resources.

trusts and land acquisitions

(We extend our appreciation to Klamath Bucket Brigade for sharing
much of this collection of  information with KBC)


!  Oregon Governor Kate Brown's letter to Interior Secretary Haaland urging her to use drought money to permanently retire Klamath Project farmland (because the government is stealing our stored water to use for other purposes.) 4/28/22
Klamath Water Users Association response to Gov. Brown 5/4/22: "...KWUA is dismayed, however, by your letter's unexpected recommendation that funding under the Act be used to permanently retire irrigation water rights in the Klamath Project and effect a shift to dry land farming...."
!!! KID response to Governor Brown's letter to Interior Secretary Haaland, 5/4/22. "...K.I.D. is concerned with your suggestion for long-term solutions without first engaging and discussing with local representatives and governments responsible for implementing such actions. Where we specifically find issue is in the suggestion that permanently idling some of the world’s most productive farmland will be beneficial; we believe this approach is overly simplistic and short sighted as the world population continues to grow and the need for food security/stability is increasing...Unfortunately, poor policy which promotes removing water from the former wetlands has (and continues to) change weather patterns in the Klamath watershed. Before agricultural modification to the landscape, over 188,000 acres of surface area was covered by water. This area was once described as the Everglades of the West...This situation has nothing to do with drying up the Klamath River or interfering or infringing upon water rights of downstream tribes – this is simply about the release of stored water that would not otherwise be physically available but for construction of a dam across the outlet of Upper Klamath Lake"


Modoc Nation purchases ranches near Sheepy Ridge, H&N 1/7/22. "With the Modoc Nation’s recent purchase of an overgrazed ranch near Sheepy Ridge, bison may be headed to the Klamath Basin — along with, tribal leadership hopes, cultural healing...Recently, the tribe has purchased several properties in the Tulelake area, intending to develop a presence on lands they were forcibly removed from..." KBC NOTE: they also bought the Newell Airport and private land north of that.

* VIDEO of government employee bragging about stealing land / mines, from 2 WWII vets, produced 1/16/16. "the woman brags about how they wrestled a $40 million mine located in the park for $2.5 million dollars from two "little guys that had been in the 2nd World War" (their words, not mine). She continues, "which I stole the money from Washington to acquire it."

Cal Fish and Game WCB spends $30,000,000 in land acquisition, 8/28/14.

USDA Announces New Landmark Conservation Initiatives, USDA press release 5/1/14. "...According to the National Fish and Wildlife Federation, annual U.S. conservation spending totals $38.8 billion...Through the 2014 Farm Bill's new conservation programs, USDA is making available up to $366 million for conservation easements under ACEP to state and local governments, Indian tribes, non-governmental organizations and private landowners."

A Letter to The Wall Street Journal by Jim Beers, No sucker like an urban sucker 2/25/13, regarding The Nature Conservancy, easements and land conservancies.

ACTION ALERT - Giant Land Acquisition Trust Fund / LWCF/ Land and Water Conservation Fund, posted to KBC 3/17/12. "It gives billions of dollars to the Federal land agencies without having to go through the appropriations process. That means there is no oversight.  No accountability.  It gives the Park Service, Forest Service, Fish and Wildlife Service and BLM and blank check to take private land. There is no way these agencies should have a blank check to convert private land into Federal government ownership with the deficit at current levels.  The Senate Transportation Bill is an all out attack on Rural America."
KBC NOTE: In the year 2000, environmental and land acquisition groups pressured farmers into being "willing sellers" with the LWCF fund, to sell out 30,000 acres of prime farm land, supported by democratic Congressmen. It did not get funded, and Tulelake Irrigation District/TID opposed it. Skip to year 2012. some of the same Congressmen are supporting the KBRA/Klamath Basin Restoration Agreement, and the year-2000 willing sellers are now "leaders" in the KWUA and TID. The KBRA likewise downsizes agriculture, gives control to government agencies and environmental groups, and has no guarantee of water for farms. "Water Certainty" means, in the spring you will be informed if and how much water you might get to irrigate your crops.

Wildlife Conservation Board Funds Environmental Improvement and Acquisition Projects, DFG, posted to KBC 3/1/12. "Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) approved $17.9 million in grants funding to help restore and protect fish and wildlife habitat..." Pit River, Watsonville, Willow Creek, Stanislaus County.

Re: California Rangeland Conservation Coalition e-update; US Fish and Wildlife Service Seeks Input on Proposed Easement Program, preceded by letter of "Input" by Dr. John Menke, posted to KBC 7/6/11. Dr. Menke's biography.

Group invests in future of the Basin, H&N 11/29/11. KBC NOTE: Landtrust partner Oregon Wild advocates considerable downsizing Klamath Basin agriculture.

FWS News Release: Fish and Wildlife Provides Nearly $19.9 Million in the Pacific Region Through Two Grant Programs, posted to KBC 5/20/07. "Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne today awarded more than $75 million in grants through two grant programs; the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund and the Private Stewardship Grants Program." (for easements and land acquisitions)

A Cooperative Conservation Approach To Policy Development, Presidents Task Force, 4/6/07. Conservation easements

IRS threatening easement deals, Rocky Mt. News, posted 1/12/07

IUCN Environmental Law Paper; The Easement as a Conservation Technique, by David B. Gregory, IUCN, posted to KBC 10/25/06. Thank you Julie Smithson for this information, http://www.propertyrightsresearch.org

New bill gives major tax breaks for land conservation Leah Justice,  TryonDailyBulletin.com

A move to make land trusts more accountable, Headwater News 11/1/05

Landowners Warned To Be Wary Of Any Conservation Easement, Livestock Weekly News posted to KBC 10/13/05

Are You Asking the Right Questions about Conservation Easements or Purchased Development rights? by Ric Frost, Policy Analysis, NM University, posted to KBC 8/6/04, written October 2, 2003.

Ninth Circuit Holds the United States Need Not Get Approval from Landowner before Implementing a Conservation Plan on Land Subject to a Permanent Conservation Easement, August 6, 2003

Connecting Conservation Easements to The Wildlands Project, by Julie Smithson, posted to KBC 6/20/04. Considering the vast amount of land taken out of agricultural production in the Klamath Basin in recent years, and the amount of land targeted to be 'conserved' by eager conservation groups, this article contains many facts and links explaining the agenda behind the easements.

Conservation Easements (CEs) and Purchased Development Rights (PDRs), by Marcia Armstrong 3/28/04 (printed with permission of Marcia Armstrong.) "In my opinion, the worst thing about CEs and PDRs is that they reach into the future and restrict the range of available land use options available to our children and grandchildren. They rob the potential for future owners to get the highest possible economic return from their property."

Conservation Easements, Washington Post

Conservation Easements, too good to be true, Joyce Morrison 11/2/03

Jay Walley's series:  Conservation Easements, http://www.paragonfoundation.org/conservation_easements.htm

More from the Paragon Foundation:

Exercising the Ultimate Private Property Right, By L.M. Schwartz, Chairman, The Virginia Land Rights Coalition, article in the Sierra Times.  This is an exceptional, well-researched document.

Julie Smithson's website has info on conservation easements; scroll down on the left of her site:  http://www.propertyrightsresearch.org/





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