Today the National Association of State Foresters and a number of other conservation and forestry organizations wrote to Senate Finance Committee leadership regarding the Forest Recovery Act of 2019.
Under current tax law, landowners are only allowed to deduct the lesser amount of the fair market value, the cost basis, or the adjusted timber basis. Unfortunately, the deduction amount typically equals zero after the 7-year amortization period or only a fraction of the fair market value of the destroyed timber. This is problematic for forest landowners because in most cases their timber becomes marketable 25 to 40-years after being planted. Forest landowners must pay expenses, including taxes annually, without crop income during this entire growth cycle. Forest landowners differ from other crop producers because they are not provided funds to cover the fair market value of their lost crop through disaster relief funding and insurance for timberland is prohibitively costly in the rare cases it is available at all. The Forest Recovery Act would allow forest owners to deduct the value of their timber prior to the loss caused by a natural disaster in accordance to the tax code.
Click below to read the letter in full.