Washington, D.C. - Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and Congressman Gerry Connolly, co-chairs of the Congressional Battlefield Caucus, today introduced the American Battlefield Protection Program Enhancement Act to make improvements to the American Battlefield Protection Program (ABPP), one of the most successful land preservation programs managed by the National Park Service. 

“I am honored to lead this legislation to ensure that our many battlefields in Upstate New York, the North Country, and across America are preserved. Updating and modernizing this program is an important step in securing additional needs for our battlefields. The battlegrounds in New York’s 21st Congressional District are an integral part of this nation’s military history and I will always work to preserve them,” stated Congresswoman Stefanik.

“As co-chair of the American Battlefields Caucus, I am proud to join Rep. Stefanik to introduce this important legislation,” said Representative Connolly. “This bill builds on the hugely successful American Battlefield Protection Program and will allow us to better protect the history and legacy of battlefields in Virginia and across our country.”

“The American Battlefield Protection Program is an exceptional mechanism for those seeking to safeguard this country’s hallowed battlegrounds. With the 250th anniversary of the American Revolution approaching, there is no better time to save these national treasures. I applaud Representatives Connolly and Stefanik for seeking out ways to streamline processes and make this program even more effective and efficient,” stated American Battlefield Trust President David Duncan.

Specifically, the American Battlefield Protection Program Enhancement Act would:

  1. Allow non-profits and tribes to apply for ABPP grants directly instead of through a state or local government sponsor.
  2. Allow ABPP’s restoration grants to be used on priority battlefields in addition to land that has been preserved using program funding.
  3. Clarify eligibility of Revolutionary War and War of 1812 Sites for Battlefield Land Acquisition Grants.
  4. Create a process for expanding and updating battlefield boundaries.

The cosponsors of this legislation are Representatives Drew Ferguson (R-GA), Julia Letlow (R-LA), Jennifer Wexton (D-VA), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), Andrew Clyde (R-GA), Don Bacon (R-NE), Robert Wittman (R-VA), Jack Bergman (R-MI), Sanford Bishop (D-GA), Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ), Juan Ciscomani (R-AZ), David Trone (D-MD), Doug Lamborn (R-CO), and Chrissy Houlahan (D-PA).

In March of this year, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik was awarded the National Preservation Leadership Award from the American Battlefield Trust for her leadership on battlefield preservation.