7-2-18.10. Tax credit; certain conveyances of real property.










A.     There shall be allowed as a credit against the tax liability imposed by the Income Tax Act [7-2-1 NMSA 1978], an amount equal to fifty percent of the fair market value of land or interest in land that is conveyed for the purpose of open space, natural resource or biodiversity conservation, agricultural preservation or watershed or historic preservation as an unconditional donation in perpetuity by the landowner or taxpayer to a public or private conservation agency eligible to hold the land and interests therein for conservation or preservation purposes.  The fair market value of qualified donations made pursuant to this section shall be substantiated by a "qualified appraisal" prepared by a "qualified appraiser", as those terms are defined under applicable federal laws and regulations governing charitable contributions.










B.     The amount of the credit that may be claimed by a taxpayer shall not exceed one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) for a conveyance made prior to January 1, 2008 and shall not exceed two hundred fifty thousand dollars ($250,000) for a conveyance made on or after that date.  In addition, in a taxable year the credit used may not exceed the amount of individual income tax otherwise due.  A portion of the credit that is unused in a taxable year may be carried over for a maximum of twenty consecutive taxable years following the taxable year in which the credit originated until fully expended.  A taxpayer may claim only one tax credit per taxable year.










C.     Qualified donations shall include the conveyance in perpetuity of a fee interest in real property or a less-than-fee interest in real property, such as a conservation restriction, preservation restriction, agricultural preservation restriction or watershed preservation restriction, pursuant to the Land Use Easement Act [47-12-1 NMSA 1978] and provided that the less-than-fee interest qualifies as a charitable contribution deduction under Section 170(h) of the Internal Revenue Code.  Dedications of land for open space for the purpose of fulfilling density requirements to obtain subdivision or building permits shall not be considered as qualified donations pursuant to the Land Conservation Incentives Act [75-9-1 NMSA 1978].










D.     Qualified donations shall be eligible for the tax credit if the donations are made to the state of New Mexico, a political subdivision thereof or a charitable organization described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code and that meets the requirements of Section 170(h)(3) of that code.










E.     To be eligible for treatment as qualified donations under this section, land or interests in lands must be certified by the secretary of energy, minerals and natural resources as fulfilling the purposes as set forth in Section  75-9-2 NMSA 1978.  The use and protection of the lands, or interests therein, for open space, natural area protection, biodiversity habitat conservation, land preservation, agricultural preservation, historic preservation or similar use or purpose of the property shall be assured in perpetuity.










F.     A taxpayer may apply for certification of eligibility for the tax credit provided by this section from the energy, minerals and natural resources department.  If the energy, minerals and natural resources department determines that the application meets the requirements of this section and that the property conveyed will not adversely affect the property rights of contiguous landowners, it shall issue a certificate of eligibility to the taxpayer, which shall include a calculation of the maximum amount of tax credit for which the taxpayer would be eligible.  The energy, minerals and natural resources department may issue rules governing the procedure for administering the provisions of this subsection.










G.     To receive a credit pursuant to this section, a person shall apply to the taxation and revenue department on forms and in the manner prescribed by the department.  The application shall include a certificate of eligibility issued by the energy, minerals and natural resources department pursuant to Subsection F of this section.  If all of the requirements of this section have been complied with, the taxation and revenue department shall issue to the applicant a document granting the tax credit.  The document shall be numbered for identification and declare its date of issuance and the amount of the tax credit allowed for the qualified donation made pursuant to this section.










H.     The tax credit represented by a document issued  pursuant to Subsection G of this section for a conveyance made on or after January 1, 2008, or an increment of that tax credit, may be sold, exchanged or otherwise transferred, and may be carried forward for a period of twenty taxable years following the taxable year in which the credit originated until fully expended.  A tax credit or increment of a tax credit may only be transferred once.  The credit may be transferred to any taxpayer.  A taxpayer to whom a credit has been transferred may use the credit for the taxable year in which the transfer occurred and unused amounts may be carried forward to succeeding taxable years, but in no event may the transferred credit be used more than twenty years after it was originally issued.










I.     A tax credit issued pursuant to this section  shall be transferred through a qualified intermediary.  The qualified intermediary shall, by means of a sworn notarized statement, notify the taxation and revenue department of the transfer and of the date of the transfer within ten days of the transfer.  Credits shall only be transferred in increments of ten thousand dollars ($10,000) or more.  The qualified intermediary shall keep an account of the credits and have the authority to issue sub-numbers registered with the taxation and revenue department and traceable to the original credit.










J.     If a charitable deduction is claimed on the taxpayer's federal income tax for any contribution for which the credit provided by this section is claimed, the taxpayer's itemized deductions for New Mexico income tax shall be reduced by the amount of the deduction for the contribution in order to determine the New Mexico taxable income of the taxpayer.










K.     For the purposes of this section:










(1)     "qualified intermediary" does not include a person who has been previously convicted of a felony, who has had a professional license revoked, who is engaged in the practice defined in Section 61-28B-3 NMSA 1978 and who is identified in Section 61-29-2 NMSA 1978, and does not include any entity owned wholly or in part or employing any of the foregoing persons; and 










(2)     "taxpayer" means a citizen or resident of the United States, a domestic partnership, a limited liability company, a domestic corporation, an estate, including a foreign estate, or a trust.