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Preservation Action, Legislative Update
Volume 16, Number 50, December 20, 2013 →

Senate Passes Budget Agreement

The Senate passed the Budget Act this week. Now that the budget levels are agreed upon, Congressional appropriators are moving forward on their spending levels. Appropriations Subcommittee Chairs and their staff are working on revising their bills with new allocations within the limits set by the budget agreement. While the budget agreement allows more spending on domestic programs, appropriators are deciding how to allocate those funds.

Preservation Action joined a coalition letter to recommend that House and Senate appropriators identify funds to meet the $30 billion allocated by the Senate for FY 2014 Interior, Environment and Related Agencies budget.

Read the Organizational Sign-on Letter to Appropriators  

Help continue the momentum, Preservation Action members should write appropriators and urge them to support the Senate numbers in the budget and support historic preservation program funding. Write House and Senate Appropriations Committee members and your Congressional representatives. Ask them to support the Senate funding levels for the National Park Service. Let Congress know how important the Historic Preservation Fund is to your community in funding historic preservation programs.

Tips for Effective Letterwriting 

During the beginning of January, we will likely see individual subcommittee and full committee bills voted on and approved; followed by a conference on an omnibus so that the January 15, 2013 deadline will be met.

Senate Hears Interior Nominee Rhea Suh

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources heard testimony from Rhea Suh on her confirmation as Assistant Secretary of Interior at the National Park Service and the Fish and Wildlife Service. Suh is currently Interior’s Assistant Secretary for Policy, <anagement and Budget at the agency. She previous worked  at the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation as well as serving as senior Legislative Assistant to former Senator Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-CO).

Video of Rhea Suh’s Confirmation Hearing  

Chairman Issa Introduces LAND Act

Rep. Darrell E. Issa (R-CA) introduced H.R.3687 Military Land and National Defense Act or “Military LAND Act” on December 10, 2013. The proposed bill will amend the National Historic Preservation Act so that sites for military training or readiness purposes will not be historically preserved or recognized if a head of an agency managing the properties objects.

The bill requires the House Committee on Natural Resources and the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources to be notified if a property is being considered for historical preservation and give heads of agencies managing properties owned by the federal government the authority to object to those properties being included on the National Register or receiving designation as a National Historic Landmark or nomination to the World Heritage List.

Preservation Action is monitoring action on the bill and preparing to meet with staff to discuss implications of the bill.

World Heritage Sites Lobby

With the Senate and House passage of the budget agreement, states with sites on the World Heritage tentative list and Preservation Action continue to reach out to congressional offices to support US payment of its World Heritage dues in the FY 2014 budget.

The hashtage for this issues on social media is #PayUNESCO.

One More Week on Legislative Priorities Survey

The 2014 Grassroots Survey is now available online. Your responses provide the critical state and local insight needed to drive our historic preservation agenda. All voices, concerns and suggestions are welcome and all responses will remain anonymous. Please feel free to share the survey with your networks. We look forward to reading and implementing your responses!

Take the Survey Now  

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