Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Save Wildlife: File Your Taxes

I am probably preaching to the choir, but for those unaware of the opportunity to contribute to their state’s non-game wildlife fund, take a look at your state income tax form. It may have a “check-off” allowing you to donate a small amount from your refund (or add a little to your tax debt) to help protect non-game wildlife.

According to a 2003 survey of tax check-offs, non-game wildlife was the most popular of the many causes represented by state income tax check-offs. At that time, only Arkansas, Hawaii, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia did not have non-game wildlife check-offs. Please tell me if you know those statistics have changed recently.

State budgets nationwide have taken a beating in this poor U.S. economy, with cuts still deepening. Anything we can do to make up the fiscal deficit on behalf of wildlife and conservation will be greatly appreciated. I am well aware that many people are unemployed at this time (I am one of them!), and it is perfectly understandable if donations are not at the top of one’s priority list. Those who are able to give, however, should be encouraged to do so. What better way to celebrate Earth Day a little early?

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