DON’T FORGET WILDLIFE AT TAX TIME
State income tax return Chickadee Checkoff box helps conserve all wildlife
PRATT — Most people enjoy opening the mailbox, but in January and February, a few not-so-welcome communications intrude on this simple pleasure — tax forms. While few people look forward to tax time, the Kansas State Income Tax form provides everyone with the opportunity feel good about filing when they check the Chickadee Checkoff box. Checking this box is the easy way for Kansans to do something for Kansas wildlife because it gives a portion of returns or any additional contribution to all wildlife, not just birds.
Since 1981, the Chickadee Checkoff Program has been at the forefront of endangered species protection, habitat protection, and wildlife appreciation projects in Kansas. The program has sponsored many popular projects, such as the Nursing Home Bird Feeder Program and Outdoor Wildlife Learning Sites (OWLS) at Kansas schools. OWLS has allowed the development of outdoor laboratories at more than 200 schools across the state. Other programs sponsored by the Chickadee Checkoff include the Kansas Backyard Wildlife Habitat Improvement and Certification Program, the Bluebird Nest Box Project, the Songbird Bundle habitat planting, and surveying and protection of sensitive species. Protecting endangered species is a core program for the Chickadee Checkoff. Additionally, the Checkoff has served to document bald eagle nesting success and winter roosts in Kansas.
More than $4.2 million has been contributed to Chickadee Checkoff since 1981. With the help of the Kansas Society of Certified Public Accountants (KSCPA), the Chickadee Checkoff has enjoyed stable contributions of about $140,000 per year over the long term. It’s a relatively small amount that goes a long way, especially when used to match federal funds.
In 2011, look for the chickadee on your individual income tax form and help Kansas wildlife.