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Tax breaks for preserving wetlands heads to governor's desk

A tight image of native grasses growing in water in Beanblossom Bottoms. Marshy flora hover just below the surface of the water.
FILE PHOTO: WFIU/WTIU
Beanblossom Bottoms is a wetland nature preserve near Bloomington. SB 246 would allow the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to certify some acres of ground as a wildland — which counts as a tax break.

A bill that provides tax breaks for developers and homeowners that preserve wetlands is awaiting Gov. Eric Holcomb’s signature. It passed the Indiana House on Tuesday.

The bill is not to be confused with a different measure already signed into law that would take away wetland protections.

SB 246 would allow the Indiana Department of Natural Resources to certify some acres of ground as a wildland — which counts as a tax break.

The bill's author, Sen. Sue Glick (R-LaGrange), said developers have told her the bill would not only give them an incentive not to destroy those wetlands, but it would encourage homeowners to maintain them over time.

READ MORE: One state wetland bill would reduce protections, another gives tax breaks for preservation

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Indiana wetland advocates overwhelmingly support this bill and oppose the one that’s already been signed into law. HEA 1383 lowers the number of wetlands that can fall into Class 3 — the only class that didn’t lose significant protections when the state changed its wetlands law in 2021.

Rebecca is our energy and environment reporter. Contact her at rthiele@iu.edu or follow her on Twitter at @beckythiele.

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Rebecca Thiele covers statewide environment and energy issues.