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Revised Defense Authorization Bill Passes House and Senate with Tomb of the Unknowns Study Provision Intact
Historic Preservation Blog from PreservationDirectory.com - Tomb of the Unknowns, National Trust for Historic Preservation, National Park Service, Arlington National Cemetery
Contributed By: The National Trust for Historic Preservation's Department of Public Policy
Email The Author: pr@nthp.org
Website: http://www.nthp.org

After the first measure was vetoed by the President, the House and Senate passed a revised version of the 2008 Defense Authorization bill (HR 4986) that includes a provision providing for a study to repair the Tomb of the Unknowns in Arlington National Cemetery. Even though Congress and the Administration haggled over and ultimately resolved a contentious legal item dealing with the seizure of Iraqi assets, the study for repair of the Tomb of the Unknowns was never in doubt. The Trust kept up the pressure to include and retain the provision throughout the legislative process.

In addition, the Army Corps announced last week that Arlington National Cemetery now is considering repairing the Tomb’s cracks to "retard continuing deterioration of the monument," and the Cemetery has initiated a Section 106 review for the repair project. Inclusion of the Tomb study provision in the Defense Bill was likely an impetus in this change of strategy by the Corps. The Cemetery administration, however, has not completely abandoned the idea of replacing the monument and describes the repair undertaking as "cyclical maintenance," with a long-term option to explore replacement."

The President has received the revised defense authorization bill and is expected to sign it shortly.

Reprinted by permission of the Public Policy Department of the National Trust


Keywords: Tomb of the Unknowns, National Trust for Historic Preservation, National Park Service, Arlington National Cemetery

Posted: January 28, 2008
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