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Preservation Action, Legislative Update
Volume 20, Number 16, May 19, 2017 →

The Review of 27 National Monuments is Open to Public Comments. Easily Comment Today

The Department of Interior (DOI) is officially accepting comments on the review of 27 National Monuments currently being conducted. President Trump signed an executive order last month calling for the DOI to review National Monument designations from the last 21 years that are over 100,000 acres or “made without adequate public outreach.” The DOI has since released a list of the 27 National Monuments that are under review. The Antiquities Act of 1906 allows presidents to designate “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of scientific interest.” Both Republican and Democratic presidents, since Theodore Roosevelt, have used the Antiquities Act to protect National Monuments for future generations.

The review of National Monuments being conducted by DOI could lead to the modification, resizing or rescission of critically important National Monuments. We need your voice! The public comment period on Bear’s Ears National Monument is open until May 26th, while the comment period on the other 26 National Monuments is open until June 10th. The Coalition for American Heritage made it easy for you to submit comments to the Department of Interior supporting our national monuments! They have prepared draft comments that you can personalize to make your views known. Easily personalize your comments and submit them on the record today!

Submit Comments on National Monument Review 

Celebrate National Historic Preservation Month With Site Visits

Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) speaking at HTC project, the Phillips Packing Plant in Cambridge, MD on March 10th. Photo: Preservation Maryland

Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) speaking at HTC project, the Phillips Packing Plant in Cambridge, MD on March 10th. Photo: Preservation Maryland

Celebrate National Historic Preservation Month this May! Tours, special programs and events celebrating all things preservation, will be happening across the country throughout May. Let us know what your city or state is doing to celebrate Preservation Month!

Preservation Month Site Visits

National Historic Preservation Month is a great time to reach out to your members of Congress and their staff, and invite them tour a historic tax credit project or join a Preservation Month event. Preservation Action is working to leverage Preservation Month as a great opportunity for members of Congress to visit historic tax credit sites. The co-chairs of the Historic Preservation Caucus, Representatives Mike Turner (R-OH) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), along with Preservation Action, sent a letter to House members recognizing Preservation Month and encouraging members to attend site visits while in district.

The House and Senate will on an in-district period May 27-June 3 and again July 1-8. One thing we heard time and time again from congressional staff during National Historic Preservation Advocacy Week, was site visits help to show members of Congress the tangible impact of programs like the Historic Tax Credit. If your member/s of congress are unavailable for a site visit, ask if members of their staff would available; this is still great way to highlight the impact of the HTC. Contact Rob Naylor with Preservation Action at rnaylor@preservationaction.org if you need any assistance facilitating a site visit. Also be sure share stories and photos from your site visits with us on Facebook and Twitter!

Two Louisiana House Bills Threaten Repeal the State Historic Tax Credit Program

Two bills introduced in the Louisiana House threaten to repeal or greatly restrict the state’s historic tax credit program. H.B 362 and H.B 355 were both introduced by Rep. Barry Ivey (R-65) and threaten to repeal the state’s 25% tax credit for qualified rehabilitation expenses on historic structures or further restrict the program. Both bills are scheduled for debate on the House floor on May 24th. Louisiana’s historic tax credit program more than pays for itself. A recent study by PlaceEconomics estimated that for every $1 that Louisiana provides in historic tax credits spurs $8.76 in additional economic activity.

Louisiana has one of the most successful historic tax credits in the country, helping to revitalize communities across the state. Combined with the federal Historic Tax Credit program, Louisiana has consistently ranked as one of the top ten performing states in the nation, both for the number of historic rehabilitation projects completed and dollars leveraged. Historic rehabilitation tax credits have leveraged nearly $2.7 billion in investment in historic properties across Louisiana. Our partners at the Preservation Resource Center of New Orleans are encouraging you to reach out to your state lawmakers and tell them to oppose H.B 362 and H.B 355 if they contain language that repeals or restricts Louisiana’s historic tax credit program. Check out their latest advocacy alert to learn more and find out how you can help!

National News

National Geographic: “Incredible Pictures of 27 National Monuments Under Threat

Curbed: “How a Beer Brand is Getting Into Historic Preservation

Stories From Around the States

Alabama: “Legislators Close to Renewing Alabama’s Historic Renovation Tax Credit

Ohio: “Small Towns Need Historic Tax Credit Program to Thrive

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