Guadalupe-Blanco River Trust Preservation Matters

News

January 21, 2010

WH/Jim King Estate Ranch Places 786-Acre Easement with Guadalupe-Blanco River Trust

WH/Jim King Estate RanchWILSON COUNTY - More than 786 acres of property over the Carrizo - Wilcox Recharge Zone in Wilson County is being preserved through a conservation easement with Clay Lorenz and Betty Bird, owners of the WH/Jim King Estate Ranch, and the Guadalupe-Blanco River Trust (GBR Trust). The easement was executed at the end of December.

Lorenz and Bird own the 786-acre tract of land situated in eastern Wilson County, which is crossed by Little Alum Creek. The land is sandy and provides a thick tree canopy for wildlife. It also provides habitat for native grasses such as little bluestem. The land is leased out for grazing and hunting, as well has having an active wildlife management plan on the land with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.

"After many conversations over the last year and determining that there were common interests, the GBR Trust was fortunate to develop this partnership with Lorenz and Bird and to help bring the land into a conservation easement," Janaé Reneaud, GBR Trust executive director said.

A conservation easement is a legal agreement between a landowner and a conservation organization or government agency that permanently limits a property's uses in order to protect the property's conservation values.

"I think I can speak for Ms Bird in saying that this is just an example of doing what you can. Our intention is to leave this property in as close to its present condition as possible, and we feel that having the ongoing stewardship of an interested party such as GBR Trust will help guarantee this," said Clay Lorenz. "Just about all of the 'restrictions' and 'limitations' imposed by terms of the easement are actually conservation practices we wanted enforced anyway, so there wasn't much downside. I would be less than honest to say that the potential tax preferences did not factor into the final decision, but I do believe that the conservation easement is a great model of individuals, institutions and government working together to do something positive for the environment. Of course, all of these efforts could be compromised by outside factors such as climate change, but like I said - you do what you can," Lorenz added.

Reneaud explained that it is in the interest of the GBR Trust to see the recharge zone maintained to ensure future water quality for wildlife and for the protection of the beautiful vistas in the watershed.

The GBR Trust is a charitable, non-profit 501(c)3 organization that was developed to conserve the land and water of the Guadalupe River watershed for its natural, recreational, scenic, historic and productive value.

The mission of the Guadalupe-Blanco River Trust is to promote and encourage the conservation, stewardship and enjoyment of the land and water resources of the Guadalupe River watershed, while maintaining its unique and irreplaceable natural heritage.

More information about the Trust is available at www.gbrtrust.org.