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Another Failed Government Program

Liberals and other do-gooders are forever devising programs aimed at improving this or helping that. Unfortunately, the programs are paid for by taxpayers. To limit development of open space, Michigan offers tax credits to owners of farmland. A study, released earlier this month by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, found the state's primary land preservation program provided tax credits totalling $800 million to owenrs of 45% of farmland statewide between 1982 through 2001. However, the Center's analysis "revealed that the bulk of credits granted between 1982 and 2001 were applied to farmland distant from development pressures. One of the Center's directors' noted, "This program failure casts doubt on government's ability to devise market-based mechanisms to improve the environment." Now the governor's land-use council is getting ready to recommend more land acquisition that may include a bond issue for as much as $1 billion.

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