Congress will get the chance to help protect historic landmarks on the First Coast through a bill that three North Florida Congressmen introduced Monday.
Jacksonville area Congressman John Rutherford (R-FL 4th District) is one of the co-sponsors of the Nation’s Oldest Port National Heritage Area Act.
Rutherford told WJCT News the measure would make parts of Duval, Nassau, St. Johns and Flagler counties a National Heritage Area.
“It runs all the way from the St. Marys River down to Pellicer Creek Watershed. So it’s the Talamato River, the St. Johns River—you know, Guana Preserve. All of these areas within that designation will now have an opportunity to preserve that incredibly rich history that we have here in Northeast Florida.”
If approved, Rutherford said the act would create a nonprofit alliance charged with developing a multi-pronged campaign of preservation, conservation and education.
He said the alliance, headed by the St. Augustine Lighthouse and Museum, would request matching funds from the Department of the Interior and the Park Service to put it into action.
North Florida Congressmen Al Lawson (D-FL 5th District) and Michael Waltz (R-FL 6th District) are co-sponsoring the legislation.