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Amtrak Reauthorization Bill Includes Study of Rail Exemptions from Federal Preservation laws
Historic Preservation Blog from PreservationDirectory.com - Amtrak reauthorization bill, Congress, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers
Contributed By: The National Trust for Historic Preservation's Department of Public Policy
Email The Author: pr@nthp.org
Website: http://www.nthp.org

On Wednesday, the House passed the Amtrak reauthorization bill (H.R. 6003) with an amendment directing a study to streamline federal historic preservation processes for federally-funded railroad projects. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee chairman James Oberstar (DMN), who opposes any exemption from historic preservation reviews, proposed the study after Rep. Bill Schuster (R-PA) tried unsuccessfully to amend the bill with an exemption from Section 4(f) for railway facilities nationwide. The Railroads Subcommittee directed preservationists and the rail industry to seek compromise, if possible, on language that would deal with perceived problems with rail corridors in Alaska and North Carolina; however, neither side could agree on a proposal. The National Trust, the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP), the National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers (NCSHPO), the Department of Interior, and rail industry representatives will collaborate on the study.

This is a victory for preservationists, but the issue is expected to arise again with the advent of a new surface transportation reauthorization bill next year.

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


Keywords: Amtrak reauthorization bill, Congress, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers

Posted: June 14, 2008
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