Press Release: Peterson Provides a “Common Sense Solution” to Easement Issues

Bi-Partisan Peterson Bill Offers Growers, Other Landowners Conservation Options

Oct. 7, 2020 – Minnesota growers and landowners would win new rights to renegotiate or buy-out 50-year conservation easements held by the U.S. Department of the Interior, under a new proposal introduced by Rep. Collin Peterson.

The Committee for Stronger Rural Communities singled out HR 8521, the Landowner Easement Rights Act, as a “common sense solution” to give Minnesota producers a fair way to deal with easements created decades ago without corresponding maps. The bipartisan Peterson bill was co-sponsored by North Dakota Republican Rep. Kelly Armstrong.

“Rep. Peterson is offering a solution to a real problem that started decades ago but is giving us headaches today. A lot of this land has changed hands, the maps haven’t always matched up, and the people who own the land today may have a need to recover their land and use it in a different way. We’re 100 percent behind Rep. Peterson’s common-sense solution to this issue,” said Kelly Erickson, chairman of the CSRC steering committee.

Specifically, the bipartisan bill gives current owners of conservation easements an option to either renegotiate to keep the easement with the federal government, or buy out the easement once it has been effect for 50 years. Those owners of easements that were created without corresponding maps are given the option to renegotiate or immediately buy out the easement.

About the CSRC:

A bipartisan committee, CSRC champions a policy agenda to strengthen rural America by supporting federal candidates who can make a significant, positive impact on rural America. In 2020, CSRC is focusing on the reelection of Rep. Collin Peterson, MN-07, because of his leadership and record of accomplishment on rural issues.