Should Senate fund Land and Water Conservation Fund?

Remember way back on November 2, when more than 62 percent of Iowans voted “Yes” on the Water and Land Legacy Amendment?

It was a victory for green minded Iowans, but just a partial one, of course. The resolution only amended the state constitution to set up a fund for land and water conservation. It didn’t actually allocate money for the purpose. The account stays empty.

Last week, Sean McMahon, Iowa state director of the Nature Conservancy, penned an editorial in the Des Moines Register reminding us of that fact and urging the U.S. senate to permanently fund the Federal Land and Water Conservation Fund, of which Iowa would get a slice. Continue reading

Iowans approve referendum on conservation

Iowa conservationists went to bed at least a little happy last night (the night owls among them, at least). Largely overshadowed by the fierce gubernatorial and congressional races and a controversial judicial retention vote, was a landslide victory for conservation efforts.

Over 62 percent of Iowans voted yesterday to approve a constitutional amendment to create a fund for land and water-quality conservation.

Known as Iowa’s Water and Land Legacy Amendment, it was just the third change to the state constitution in the past 16 years.

The measure would designate three-eighths of one percent of a sales tax increase to a trust fund dedicated to conservation.  This would generate about $150 million a year.

A  Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel columnist lauds the vote and would like to see Wisconsin adopt a similar approach.

Read more about the amendment on Or check out the Des Moines Register for reactions.

Also, view a detailed table of election results from the New York Times.

Des Moines Register: Vote yes on conservation

-photo by Alfred Borchard

Check out the Des Moines Register’s editorial on the Iowa’s Water and Land Legacy Amendment.

Voting is done alone in a booth. It’s personal. Ideally, when you mark boxes on a ballot, you should be expressing your priorities, values and ideas – about the kind of government you want and the kind of world you want to live in.

One value Iowans should vote to support on Nov. 2: a cleaner, better future for the outdoors in this state.

On general election ballots, voters will see a question about Iowa’s Water and Land Legacy Amendment. Approval by a simple majority means amending the constitution to establish a trust fund dedicated to conservation and recreation. The vote will not raise taxes. But it will ensure a small portion of any future sales tax increase is dedicated to conservation and recreation….