For the first time in history, the House of Representatives voted to reauthorize the federal Battlefield Land Acquisition Grants Program at $15 million. While the Senate was unable to likewise advance reauthorizing legislation before the end of the year, your efforts moved the ball farther than ever before. Dozens of representatives and senators are now on record in support of preserving our nation’s battlefields — thanks to you!
I am pleased to report that we now have a chance to pass a bill that will ensure this program remains one of the strongest weapons in our arsenal for years to come! Just days after the start of the new Congress, Rep. Jody Hice of Georgia, together with a bipartisan coalition of House members from across the country, reintroduced the Preserving America’s Battlefields Act, H.R. 307. Sens. Johnny Isakson of Georgia, Tim Kaine of Virginia and Roy Blunt of Missouri are championing an identical companion bill in the Senate, S. .225.
This legislation would reauthorize the Battlefield Land Acquisition Grants Program at $20 million annually. Further, for the first time, it would provide funding to restore and interpret battlefield sites following their preservation — making them the outdoor classrooms we all know they ought to be.
As I’ve said before, our cause has benefited from tremendous partners in government, including the United States Congress and the National Park Service. Their institutional, bipartisan support for battlefield preservation has resulted in the continued success of the Battlefield Land Acquisition Grants Program. The matching grants awarded through this program have enabled the American Battlefield Trust and other nonprofit groups to save more than 30,000 acres of battlefield land at sacred places like Antietam, Brandywine, Fort Donelson, Gettysburg, Princeton, Richmond and Vicksburg.
It is imperative that your elected representatives in Washington, D.C., hear from you! Please take a moment to write your members of Congress and ask them to cosponsor the Preserving America’s Battlefields Act, S.225 and H.R. 307. Our online advocacy tool is simple, and sending a letter only takes a few minutes.
Let your representative and senators know that — as a constituent — this issue is important to you, and you would like their support. With the approaching 250th anniversary of America’s War of Independence, there is no better time than now to pass this landmark legislation. Thank you, now as always, for your support for battlefield preservation!
‘Til the battle is won,
American Battlefield Trust
P.S. Your voice is needed! Please write your members of Congress in support of battlefield preservation. Our online tool is simple and sending a letter only takes a few minutes.