Iowa Farm and Rural Life Ballot Exhibits That Farmers Help Pure Assets and Outside Recreation Belief Fund

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AMES, Iowa – In 2010, a majority of Iowans voted to amend the constitution creating a trust fund for natural resources and outdoor recreation. The purpose of the fund is to provide resources for investments in land and water conservation in Iowa. The amendment stipulated that the trust fund would be funded by a future three-eighths of one percent increase in sales tax that has not yet materialized.

The 2010 Iowa Farm and Rural Life Poll found significant support for public spending on parks, hiking trails, soil and water conservation, and similar investments in the state’s natural resources.

A decade later, the 2021 Farm Poll again examined farmers’ perspectives on the trust fund and related issues.

The poll results showed significant support for the Iowa Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust Fund. A strong majority of respondents – 56% – agreed the trust fund should be funded, compared to 12% who disagreed (32% chose unsure). More than two-thirds agreed with the statement, “I believe investing in natural resources and outdoor recreation can help the economy,” and 63% agreed with the point, “In general, parks, hiking trails, and other natural resource-related recreational opportunities.” bring economic benefits to rural areas.”

Another 49% agreed that Iowa farmers would benefit from increased conservation funding, and 46% agreed that the trust fund would help farmers with soil and water conservation efforts.

“The trust fund could be a really big boost to rural areas by helping invest in improved natural resources and recreational opportunities for residents and visitors alike,” said J. Arbuckle, director of the Farm Poll. “Farmers recognize that such investments can result in economic benefits for their rural communities.”

A majority of 42% of survey respondents agreed they would support an increase in sales tax to fund the trust if the increases were offset by equal or greater tax cuts, compared with 23% who disagreed and 34% were unsure. Overall, the results show that Iowa farmers support the idea of ​​the trust fund and spending to improve Iowa’s natural resources and believe such investments are good for the economy and bring economic benefits to rural areas.

“It would be great for the state of Iowa if we could commit to funding the Natural Resources and Outdoor Recreation Trust Fund,” Arbuckle added. “Neighboring states of Minnesota and Missouri have really benefited from their trust funds’ investments in recreational opportunities and soil and water conservation, particularly in rural areas.”

Also known as the “Farm Poll,” the Iowa Farm and Rural Life Poll has been conducted since 1982 and is the longest-running survey of its kind in the United States. Questionnaires were sent out in February and March 2021, and 1,095 farmers responded to the nationwide survey.

Other topics covered in the 2021 Farm Poll summary include community vitality, the impact of COVID-19, renewable energy, carbon markets and the use of various media for information and entertainment purposes.

View the full 2021 Farm Survey and previous years’ surveys online. J. Arbuckle can be reached at 515-294-1497 or [email protected]

Shareable photo: conservation practices.