Below are the top four legislative priorities for Preservation Action in 2013 based on current legislation and the results of our national annual grassroots poll.
Federal Historic Tax Credit
The federal historic tax credit is so effective that there are three bipartisan bills that have been introduced that would expand it and make it better. We support these improvements and additions to tax incentives for historic preservation that create jobs, leverage private investment, bring economic development to communities AND save our American heritage.
Funding for State Historic Preservation Officers
Preservation Officers carry out many of the responsibilities of the National Historic Preservation Act including administering the Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credit (Historic Tax Credit) program, conducting state and local inventories and surveys, and providing Certified Local Government programs with assistance and funding.
Funding for Tribal Historic Preservation Officers
Tribal Preservation Officers carry out many of the same responsibilities of there State counterparts but on Tribal lands.
We saw with last year’s passage of our new national transportation law increased pressure to make project reviews more “streamlined” or efficient. The assumption, of course, is that fewer or more efficient reviews will speed project delivery and save money. We are beginning to see this trend show up in a variety of pieces of legislation including the Hurricane Sandy relief package. Efficiencies are one thing – bypassing national preservation laws or making uninformed decisions based upon inadequate review is another. We must continue to pay attention!
Implementation of the Recommendations Issued in 2011 For the Improvement of the Federal Preservation Program
In 2012, the Federal Historic Preservation Program Task Force, convened by Preservation Action, released a set of recommendations for improving components of the federal historic preservation program. We seek to implement these recommendations.
Grassroots Survey Results
Preservationists were first asked to pick their most important preservation policy issue. Here are the results:
- Funding of the Historic Preservation Fund – 28.9%
- Preserving the Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credit – 19.8%
- Improving the Federal Rehabilitation Tax Credit – 14.9%
- Improving the Visibility and Effectiveness of the Federal Historic Preservation Program – 14%
Preservationists were then asked to rank twelve preservation legislative agenda items in order of importance. Here are the results:
- Protecting the Federal Historic Tax Credit
- Funding for State and Tribal Historic Preservation Offices
- Improving/Enhancing the Historic Tax Credit
- Pressure to Bypass or Weaken Preservation Laws (“Streamlining”)
- Challenges of a Growing Tribal Historic Preservation Program
- Brick and Mortar Funding Opportunities
- Funding for Public Lands and Battlefields
- Sustainability and Energy Efficiency
- Implementation of New Transportation Law
- National Heritage Area Funding/Program Language
- Increasing Diversity in Preservation
- Funding for Disaster Recovery