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….