Mass. High Court Says Open Conservation Land Is Tax Exempt

Law360, New York (May 15, 2014, 5:12 PM EDT) -- Massachusetts' highest court ruled Thursday that maintaining open forest space for conservation activity qualifies as a charitable purpose under state law and exempts such land holders from local property taxes, handing a victory to a nonprofit group that challenged taxes on its land.

The town of Hawley imposed taxes upon a 134-acre tract owned by the New England Forestry Foundation on the basis that the organization failed to provide adequate public access to the tract, and said mere ownership doesn't constitute a charitable purpose. The state's...
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