Massachusetts’ Conservation Land Tax Credit (CLTC) program offers an incentive for landowners who donate land for conservation purposes. CLTC is long overdue for a funding expansion that would allow for a larger number of these credits to be offered.
Photo credit: Mount Grace Land Conservation Trust
The House version of the state budget passed earlier this spring included that funding increase, proposing to raise the cap on CLTC from $2 million to $5 million over the next three years. Now, a conference committee is settling the differences between the House and Senate budget versions, and are expected to report out their own version on Wednesday for the Governor’s approval.
You can help CLTC get its funding! Please contact your legislator, and ask them to urge budget conference committee members to keep the CLTC increase in the budget.
The Governor’s environmental bond bill is expected to go to the Senate floor for a vote this week. This bond includes several components of our priority climate change adaptation bill, and if signed into law, its passage will be an important step toward implementing goals we’ve been advocating for over the past six years.
You can help by contacting your state Senator and asking them to vote yes on S.2591.
The Governor’s environmental bond bill (H.4438) is expected to go to the House floor for a vote this week. This bond includes several components of our priority climate change adaptation bill, and if signed into law, its passage will be an important step toward implementing goals we’ve been advocating for over the past six years.
You can help by contacting your state representative and asking them to vote yes on H.4438.
One of our top legislative priorities this session is a bill related to pollinator health: S.2460, A resolve to protect pollinator habitat, filed by Senator Jason Lewis (D-Winchester) and Representative Mary Keefe (D-Worcester). It was recently reported to the Senate Committee on Rules, the last stop before consideration before the full Senate.
We need your help to get this bill passed before the end of the session! Please call your state Senator today and ask them to support this bill, which is critical to protecting both wild and native bees, as well as a whole range of pollinators including butterflies.
Photo credit: Zeynel Cebeci
The Governors’ Climate Change Bond, which includes many of Mass Audubon’s priority adaptation goals, had its public hearing Tuesday before the House Committee on Bonding, Capital Expenditures and State Assets. The bill (H.4438) is an important step forward for boosting funding for climate change preparedness, bringing the state’s bond authorization for that purpose to $300 million. Our Massachusetts Climate Change Adaptation Coalition is also still urging the legislature to add in a “consistency provision,” which would ensure the Commonwealth’s climate change plan does not sit on a shelf when completed but instead is implemented and complied with by state agencies.
You can help by calling the Committee at (617) 722-2017 and asking them to report H.4438 out favorably. Please also also ask them to support our Coalition’s “consistency provision” amendment. Our Coalition, which is co-chaired by Mass Audubon, has already provided testimony to the Committee. Read it here for more information on the additions we hope to see made.
The US Senate passed a budget resolution this week to kick off the FY18 budget process. The resolution includes a provision instructing the Energy and Natural Resources Committee to take actions that could allow federal leasing for oil and gas drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Call your Senators to tell them you oppose this provision. You can let them know that the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge makes up nearly 20 million acres of unspoiled nature that should remain wild, not exploited by oil and gas companies.
Arctic National Wildlife Refuge
This week at the State House, proposed legislation to update Massachusetts’ Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) is up for a hearing.
The Massachusetts RPS drives clean energy development by requiring utilities and other electricity suppliers to buy an increasing percentage of local “Class 1” renewable energy each year. Currently, the RPS increases by 1% each year, but we need to take bolder action to satisfy the state’s Global Warming Solutions Act requirements and help reduce emissions to avoid the worse impacts of climate change.
Our friends at Mass Energy have put together a helpful page on how you can contact your legislators in support of legislation that could increase the RPS by 3% per year – learn more.
As we head into the first week of hurricane season, contact your Congressperson and tell them not to cut the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Weather Service budget.
Let them know that the proposed federal budget cuts would impact climate change and ocean research that helps prepare communities for sea level rise and more intense storms. These cuts would also impact NOAA’s Sea Grant program, which works with universities in 33 states and funds coastal and marine research locally at MIT and Woods Hole.
These “Actions You Can Take This Week” are taken from our Beacon Hill Weekly Roundup e-newsletter. Sign up here!