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Preservation Action, Legislative Update
Volume 20, Number 09, March 31, 2017 →

97 Representatives Sign-on to HPF Dear Colleague Letter

A bipartisan group of 97 Representatives signed on to the FY18 Historic Preservation Fund Dear Colleague letter, surpassing last years total of 93 representatives. The letter was sent to the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Chairman, Ken Calvert (R-CA) and Ranking Member, Betty McCollum (D-MN). Thank you to everyone that reached out to their members of Congress, urging them to sign-on to this important letter.

The letter requests $83.4 million for FY18 in funding for the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) , equal to the amount included in last year’s House passed FY17 Interior Appropriations bill. This includes $47.9 million for State Historic Preservation Offices (SHPOs), $11.99 million is for Tribal Historic Preservation Offices (THPOs), $500,000 for grants to underserved communities, and $5 million for the Save America’s Treasures grant program. This request also includes $13 million for the Civil Rights competitive grants initiative and $5 million for competitive grants for Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

Thank you to everyone that reached out to their members of Congress, urging them to sign-on to this important letter.We’d especially also like to thank the Historic Preservation Caucus Co-Chairs Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH) and Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and their offices for their leadership on this letter.

Below are the representatives that signed-on to the HPF Dear Colleague letter. Did your member sign-on? Be sure to thank them for their critical support.

  • Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR)
  • Rep. Mike Turner (R-OH)
  • Rep. Mark DeSaulnier (D-CA)
  • Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI)
  • Rep. John Yarmuth (D-KY)
  • Rep. Donald Payne Jr. (D-NJ)
  • Rep. Elizabeth Etsy (D-CT)
  • Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC)
  • Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-NY)
  • Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (D-NJ)
  • Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC)
  • Rep. A. Donald McEachin (D-VA)
  • Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA)
  • Rep. Ryan Costello (R-PA)
  • Rep. Stacey Plaskett (D-VI)
  • Rep. Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI)
  • Rep. Denny Heck (D-WA)
  • Rep. Filemon Vela (D-TX)
  • Rep. James McGovern (D-MA)
  • Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR)
  • Rep. Julia Brownley (D-CA)
  • Rep. Joe Crowley (D-NY)
  • Rep.Donald Beyer Jr. (D-VA)
  • Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE)
  • Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-PA)
  • Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA)
  • Rep. Jim Himes (D-CT)
  • Rep. Luke Messer (R-IN)
  • Rep. Sander Levin (D-MI)
  • Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA)
  • Rep. Seth Moulton (D-MA)
  • Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY)
  • Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI)
  • Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI)
  • Rep. Anthony Brown (D-MD)
  • Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA)
  • Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-NY)
  • Rep. Marc Veasey (D-TX)
  • Rep. Dave Loebsack (D-IA)
  • Rep. Bonnie Watson Colman (D-NJ)
  • Rep. Daniel Donovan Jr. (R-NY)
  • Rep. John Katko (R-NY)
  • Rep. Niki Tsongas (D-MA)
  • Rep. Robert Brady (D-PA)
  • Rep. James Langevin (D-RI)
  • Rep. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY)
  • Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO)
  • Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR)
  • Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN)
  • Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC)
  • Rep. Danny Davis (D-IL)
  • Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD)
  • Rep. Terri Sewell (D-AL)
  • Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-VA)
  • Rep. David McKinley (R-WV)
  • Rep. Hank Johnson Jr. (D-GA)
  • Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI)
  • Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN)
  • Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA)
  • Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA)
  • Rep. Stephen Lynch (D-MA)
  • Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-NY)
  • Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II (D-MO)
  • Rep. Albio Sires (D-NJ)
  • Rep. Joe Courtney (D-CT)
  • Rep. William Keating (D-MA)
  • Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT)
  • Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL)
  • Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL)
  • Rep. Christopher Smith (R-NJ)
  • Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN)
  • Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT)
  • Rep. C.A Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD)
  • Rep. Judy Chu (D-CA)
  • Rep. John Conyers Jr. (D-MI)
  • Rep. Madeleine Bordallo (D-GU)
  • Rep. Suzan Delbene (D-WA)
  • Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD)
  • Rep. Brian Higgins (D-NY)
  • Rep. Eliot Engel (D-NY)
  • Rep. Paul Tonko (D-NY)
  • Rep. Dina Titus (D-NV)
  • Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-CA)
  • Rep. David Rouzer (R-NC)
  • Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY)
  • Rep. John Larson (D-CT)
  • Rep. Barbara Comstock (R-VA)
  • Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY)
  • Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY)
  • Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ)
  • Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
  • Rep. Elise Stefanik (R-NY)
  • Rep. G.K Butterfield (D-NC)
  • Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-TX)
  • Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)
  • Rep. Darren Soto (D-FL)
  • Rep. David Scott (D-GA)

Sen. Warner and Sen. Portman Introduce Legislation to Address the National Park Service Maintenance Backlog

Senator Mark Warner (D-VA) and Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) introduced S. 751 to address the $12 billion maintenance backlog at the National Park Service (NPS). Due to chronic underfunding, the NPS now faces a significant backlog of deferred maintenance on visitor centers, rest stops, trails, campgrounds, transportation infrastructure, and historic structures. This bill, introduced earlier this week, would establish the National Park Service Legacy Restoration Fund. This fund would be allocated at $500 million annually through existing revenues the government receives from oil and natural gas royalties, until 2047. 80% of the funds in the NPS Restoration Fund would be dedicated to the repair and rehabilitation of key assets, including historic structures. The remaining 20% would be allocated to transportation related projects. The fund will also encourage private-public partnerships.

“Our bipartisan legislation provides this needed investment by helping ensure that these historically diverse assets are preserved for future generations to enjoy. It also makes needed investments in NPS infrastructure,” Sen. Warner said about the legislation.

Sen. Tim Kaine (D-VA), Sen. Angus King (I-ME), and Sen. Brian Schatz (D-HI) have signed on as cosponsors to S. 751. The bill was referred to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

Gov. Scott Walker Proposes Cap on Wisconsin’s Historic Tax Credit Program

In his biennial state budget Wisconsin Governor, Scott Walker, proposed capping the state’s popular historic tax credit program at $10 million. The proposal has been met with significant opposition. Gov. Walker attempted to cap at the program back in 2015, but a coalition of developers, municipal leaders and historic preservation groups successfully rallied behind the program and the proposal was blocked by the legislature. Wisconsin’s historic rehabilitation tax credit, provides a 20% tax credit on qualified rehabilitation expenses and is un-capped. In 2016, $51.6 million in tax credits were awarded to 34 projects. A cap at $10 million would significantly impact the historic structures from across Wisconsin that are being revitalized and turned into community assets.

The same coalition of preservationists, developers, and others are regrouping and planning to push back against this proposal. Gov. Walker argues that the program needs to be limited so it does not crowd out other economic development priorities. Advocates for the state’s historic tax credit say the program is vital to insuring the integrity of historic neighborhoods and structures, all while increasing revenue to the state and spurring economic development.

Thanks for Another Great Advocacy Week


NCSHPO Executive Director, Erik Hein, at Advocacy Week 2017

Thanks to everyone who battled the weather and came out for National Historic Preservation Advocacy Week. Thanks to all of the participants, sponsors and supporters who helped make it all possible. We had over 200 meetings scheduled, representing 42 states!

Return Hill Meetings Report Forms

Knowing who you met with and how the meetings went is essential for Preservation Action and National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers staff for their continued advocacy. Reports can be completed online and takes less than 10 minutes (in case anyone had difficulty entering multiple reports, it should be working now).

Complete Your Hill Report Form Online Today! →

A copy of the form was also included in your briefing packet, and can be downloaded here. Completed forms can also be emailed to mail@preservationaction.org, or simply mailed to our office. Please return your hill report forms by April 15th.

Follow Up

As preservationists return to the their home states, Preservation Action is counting on grassroots activists to keep up at the advocacy!

  • Follow up with your members of Congress and their staff you met during your hill visits. Perhaps send a personal thank you note.
  • Urge your members of Congress to co-sponsor the Historic Tax Credit Improvement Act (S. 425, H.R 1158)
  • Request a meeting with your member of Congress in their district. The next congressional in-district period is April 7-24th.
  • Invite the members and their district staff to tour tax credit projects or historic sites.
  • Invite the member of Congress to speak at a local event on historic preservation.

National News

National Trust for Historic Preservation: “Three Buildings Saved by the Historic Tax Credit

Stories From the States

District of Columbia: “D.C’s Oldest Buildings and Most Diverse Architecture, Mapped

Alabama: “Changes to Historic Tax Credits May Put Legislation on Shaky Ground

New Jersey: “3 Bills Benefit Farmland, Historic Preservation in Central Jersey






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