Letter: Purchase of Development Rights Program supports Routt County’s vision | SteamboatToday.com

Letter: Purchase of Development Rights Program supports Routt County’s vision

As I think on the history of the Purchase of Development Program, or PDR, I reflect on our decision to place a conservation easement on our ranch at Clark in 1994. At that time, the only benefit was an IRS charitable contribution, but we were committed to the land.

We then approached the county commissioners about further support of Routt County agriculture. Out of this conversation came the Routt County Open Lands Plan, which included tools and incentives for landowners to protect their land and water from development pressure. The final piece of the Open Lands Plan was the passage of the initial PDR funding in 1996.

All of a sudden, there was funding available for the committed landowners that had a passion for their lands and natural resources. These PDR funds have been used throughout Routt County to support the incredible open spaces and working lands we all value.

Many of my neighbors have utilized these funds to improve their operations, to bring family back to the community, and to be able to share what we all value here. Routt County became a leader statewide in local efforts to reward stewards. Please consider a yes vote on Referendum 1A, the Purchase of Development Rights renewal that will appear on your ballot.

Jay Fetcher


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