On July 13, 2016, Governor Wolf signed into law Act 84 of 2016. The multi-faceted legislation includes an expansion of the types of conservation-related real estate transactions excluded from paying realty transfer tax. Although many land trust real estate transactions were already excluded, local government transactions involving easements were not. PALTA worked hard to advocate for this important expansion which will further encourage the conservation of open space, farmland, trails, and historic sites across Pennsylvania.
The newly-expanded exclusions will take effect on September 11, 2016. They include:
- A transfer of an agricultural conservation easement to or from the Commonwealth, a county, a local government unit or a conservancy under authority of the Agricultural Area Security Law;
- A transfer of a conservation easement or preservation easement under the Conservation and Preservation Easements Act; and
- A transfer of a perpetual historic preservation easement, a perpetual public trail easement or other perpetual public recreational use easement, a perpetual scenic preservation easement or a perpetual open-space preservation easement to or from the United States, the Commonwealth, a county, a local government unit or a conservancy.
- Transfers to or by a land bank.