On February 1, President Obama submitted to Congress his proposed fiscal year 2011 budget for the National Park Service. History-related programs were particularly hard hit with the proposed elimination of two preservation programs (Save America’s Treasures and Preserve America) and a 50 percent cut in Heritage Partnership programs.
$2.17 billion is provided for the operation of the National Park Service (NPS). This represents a $21.7 million decrease over the FY 2010 level.
Funding for historical and preservation-related programs at
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the Park Service are summarized below. Please note below that for comparison purposes, the FY 10 appropriation will be included in parentheses after the administration’s proposed FY 11 number.
Historic Preservation Fund–$54.5 million ($79.5 million) -$25 million. The Fund includes:
- State Historic Preservation Offices–$46.5 ($46.5 million) no change
- Tribal Grants–$8 million ($8 million) no change
- Save America’s Treasures program–eliminated ($25 million) -$25 million: These funds are used to make small one-time grants for specific local historic preservation projects to preserve a building or artifact which might otherwise be lost.
National Recreation and Preservation–$51 million ($68.4 million) -$17.4 million. This account includes:
- Heritage Partnership programs–$9 million ($17 million) -8.8 million. These funds finance grants to local non-profit groups in support of historical and cultural recognition, preservation and tourism activities.
- Preserve America program—eliminated ($4.6 million) -$4.6 million: This program provides small grants to local communities in support of heritage tourism, education and historic preservation planning activities.
American Battlefield Grants program–$6 million ($9 million) -$3 million. The program provides matching grants to State and local entities to preserve and protect American battlefield sites outside the national park system.
Cultural Programs–$25 million ($25 million) no change
The bill provides $5 million for the Park Partnership Project Grants program. It is a matching grant program that allows the Park Service to fund merit-based signature projects and programs throughout the park system. It allows the NPS to leverage, from non-federal sources, no less than 50 percent of the total cost of each project. The program was launched during the Bush administration to help celebrate the Park Service’s centennial in 2016. Congress provided $15 million for the program in FY 2010.