Conservation Easement Holder Certification
Pursuant to section 12-15-104 C.R.S., the Division has established a certification program for organizations that hold conservation easements.
The purpose of the program is to:
- Establish minimum qualifications to encourage professionalism and stability, and
- Identify fraudulent or unqualified organizations to prevent them from becoming certified.
The certification program applies to:
- Nonprofit entities that hold easements to protect conservation values or for historic preservation, and
- State and local governmental entities that hold easements.
Organizations that seek certification must apply to the Division. The application considers the applicant’s:
- Processes for reviewing, selecting, and approving easements
- Stewardship practices and capacity
- Financial records, and
- Governance and ethics.
See Division of Conservation Rule 2.1 for the certification requirements.
See list of organizations that have applied for certification and their current certification status.
Conservation easement tax credit certificates may only be issued for easements held by certified organizations. Certification is not required for organizations that hold easements for which no tax credit is claimed.
Template Project List
Expedited or Automatic Certification
The certification program contains a provision for the expedited or automatic certification of entities "currently accredited by national land conservation organizations that are broadly accepted by the conservation industry," and a streamlined and lower-cost process for conservation easement holders that do not intend to accept new donations of conservation easements for which tax credits would be claimed that focuses on the holder’s stewardship capabilities (see Chapter 2 - rules 2.1 and 2.2).
Certification fees for entities currently accredited by a national land conservation organization
- Initial Certification Application Fee - Stewardship-only: $500
- Initial Certification Application Fee - Full certification: $1,000
- Conservation Easement Holder Renewal Fee - Stewardship-only: $250
- Conservation Easement Holder Renewal Fee - Full certification : $500
Certification fees for entities not currently accredited by a national land conservation organization
- Initial Certification Application Fee - Stewardship-only: $1,000
- Initial Certification Application Fee - Full certification: $2,000
- Conservation Easement Holder Renewal Fee - Stewardship-only: $500
- Conservation Easement Holder Renewal Fee - Full certification : $1,000