IRS denies golf course tax break claim

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Things are not looking so green for the St. James Plantation Golf Club.

The IRS decided to deny the club a tax break claim of nearly $8 million.

The incentive, known as the conservation-easement tax beak, was designed to encourage protection of pristine land. In 2012, a little more than 1,000 taxpayers were able to take advantage of the incentive, and that resulted in right under $1 billion in deductions.

In this case, the IRS stated the St. James course, filled with a variety of plants and animals, wasn’t enough of a natural habitat to justify the deductions. Some of those reasons including the grass not being native to the area, and the gated community doesn’t serve as a “corridor” to let animals in and out.

St. James’ attorney David Wooldridge said the judge’s ruling contradicted past rulings regarding other courses with similar lands.

“The judge sort of plowed new ground in terms of evaluating how much relatively natural habitat or how important the species lives on it, is enough to qualify for one of these conservation easement deductions,” said Wooldridge.

Wooldridge added that St. James could appeal or ask the judge to reconsider the decision if they choose to.


Categories: Brunswick, Local

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