We all know the squeaky wheel gets the grease.
If you don’t share your views with your legislators, then your views will not be considered when he or she votes on an issue that is important to you. It’s your duty to educate your legislators. There are thousands of policies and bills to be considered each Congressional session. Do not assume that your legislator or their staff are even aware of historic preservation issues. The average tenure of a legislative staffer is eighteen months, so you have to communicate regularly.
Identify your Representatives in Congress
Once you have figured out who your legislators are, call their office and find out which staff member handles historic preservation issues. Get their phone number and email address.
Answer two questions about your Representatives
Are they on committees important for Historic Preservation? While there is nothing that limits what issues you should bring to your legislator’s attention, certain issues resonate more specifically for those on key committees. For example, appropriations committee members are going to be more interested in funding that they are in program authorization.
Is your representative a member of the Historic Preservation Caucus in the House of Representatives? If you representative is a member of the Caucus, be sure to thank them. If they are not, one of your action items should be to ask them to join.
Pick the Issue
Each year Preservation Action redefines our priorities while responding to emergency legislation and taking cues from our annual grassroots survey. Our current priorities and those for 2012, 2011, and 201o are available online for your reference. Contact our office with any questions.
Share your Information with Preservation Action
If you make a visit, or if you hear anything back from your legislator as a result of your emails or calls, please let us know. It’s helpful for us to know who are friends and foes are!