Sedona AZ (March 26, 2012) – The deadline for filing income tax returns is approaching, and Arizonans have an easy way to help the state’s wildlife by “making a mark” on their state income tax form.
The Arizona Wildlife Fund is a voluntary program that allows taxpayers to make a tax-deductible donation to help imperiled and endangered wildlife, including majestic bald eagles, black-footed ferrets, California condors, Apache trout, Mexican wolves and desert tortoises, and other animals.
Arizona is one of 41 states that allow taxpayers to make a contribution to worthwhile causes, like wildlife conservation. Last year, the average donation was nearly $22. Arizona started the program more than 25 years ago, and since then taxpayers have donated more than $5 million to the conservation of nongame wildlife species (those that are neither hunted nor fished in the traditional sense).
The Arizona Wildlife Fund box is on line 44 of the state’s long income tax form, or line 40 of the short tax form.
“Since Game and Fish does not receive any general fund dollars, the Arizona Wildlife Fund provides important support for managing and conserving some of the state’s most iconic native species,” says Eric Gardner, nongame branch chief for the Arizona Game and Fish Department. “The fund has a tremendous impact on conserving one of Arizona’s greatest natural treasures – its wildlife — which provide a variety of low-cost recreational opportunities for residents to enjoy and real economic benefits to local communities.”
For more information on the Arizona Wildlife Fund, visit www.azgfd.gov/makeamark. To learn more about the conservation and reintroduction efforts the fund supports, visit http://www.azgfd.gov/w_c/nongame_species.shtml.