Tax Status Complaint Targets Group Fighting Biden’s 30-by-30 Land Plan |
WASHINGTON, DC, May 17, 2021 (ENS) – The government watchdog Accountable.US has filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service requesting an investigation into the nonprofit American Stewards of Liberty for operating as an “action organization” that dedicates part substantial of its activities to influence legislation through lobbying and other means, in violation of its 501 (c) (3) tax exempt status.
This year, American Stewards of Liberty led what Accountable. The United States claims this is a deceptive war on the Biden administration’s landmark decade-long conservation proposal known as “30 out of 30” because it aims to keep 30 percent of U.S. land by 2030.
American Stewards of Liberty, ASL, states on its website: “The 30 x 30 program is a plan put forward by radical environmental activists to permanently protect 30% of America’s land and oceans by 2030.”
Falsely calling it “land grabbing,” the American Stewards of Liberty hold sessions where they indoctrinate participants with misinformation and explain strategies to counter the proposal. A participant in one session compared 30 out of 30 to the genocide under Stalin, alleges Accountable.US.
The controversy has surfaced in Congress. On May 7, Representative Lauren Boebert, a Republican from Colorado, and 22 other Republicans, tabled the “30 x 30 Termination Act”. This bill prohibits federal funds from being spent to carry out the program, guarantees no net loss of non-federal land in counties and states that already have a significant federal presence, guarantees no net loss of multiple-use activities without congressional approval, and prohibits unilateral withdrawals of minerals without congressional approval.
Besides the value of the vast 30 out of 30 conservation effort proposed by President Joe Biden, another important question raised by the complaint is exactly how much lobbying is allowed by the IRS if an organization wishes to retain its non-profit status. lucrative.
Accountable.US President Kyle Herrig wrote in his letter to the IRS: “A review of ASL activities shows significant lobbying and a primary goal that can only be achieved through legislation or the defeat of proposed legislation . “
Herrig listed ASL’s activities as follows: “Drafting model resolutions for adoption by county governments, popular lobbying at local, state and federal levels, and direct local lobbying.”
He told the IRS that these activities were all attempting to influence legislation that would qualify the ASL as an “action organization” because “the 30 by 30 opposition program is an important part of its activities and a goal. principal of the organization “.
As the “Salt Lake City Tribune” reported, ASL has received hundreds of thousands of dollars from Utah counties.
ASL’s pressure against Biden’s 30 by 30 conservation initiative violates its tax-exempt status, Accountable.US alleges.
Kane County, Utah has donated nearly half a million dollars in recent years to the Texas-based American nonprofit American Stewards of Liberty for management advisory and legal services. public lands.
Now, the ASL has become a leading voice against President Joe Biden’s conservation agenda, in potential violation of his tax-exempt status.
The Texas-based group, led by husband-wife Dan and Margaret Byfield, holds 501 (c) (3) status, which would bar them from engaging in political action – activities aimed at promoting or blocking the legislation. His campaign against Biden’s “30 by 30” initiative appears to ignore federal rules for tax-exempt groups, with direct calls that put pressure on elected officials at all levels of government, Accountable.US alleges.
The selected image: The Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge, established in 1984, is located 90 miles northwest of Las Vegas in Nevada’s Amargosa Valley. The desert oasis provides habitat for at least 24 plants and animals that are not found anywhere else in the world. Four fish and one plant are listed as endangered. September 19, 2009 (Photo courtesy of US Fish & Wildlife Service, Southwest Pacific Region)
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