Congressman Sanford Bishop

Representing the 2nd District of Georgia

H.R. 1471 - Jimmy Carter National Historic Site

MR. BISHOP (GA). Madame Speaker, I rise in support of H.R. 1471, which will expand and revitalize the Jimmy Carter National Historic Site, which is located in Plains, Georgia.

My Congressional District in Southwest Georgia includes Plains. Therefore I am pleased to sponsor this bipartisan legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives which, if passed, will bolster the local economy, enhance tourism, and provide people from around the world with a new insight into the life and career of the 39th President of the United States.

H.R. 1471 will expand the national historic site’s authorized boundaries from 15 acres to 18 acres and would allow the National Park Service to acquire several additional properties for the park, including a house that the Carter family lived in from 1956-1961. Additionally, the legislation will redesignate the park from a national historic site to a national historical park. It also would direct that the park preserve, and interpret, a southern agricultural-based rural community during the early to middle years of the 20th century.

Last August, I took my whole staff on a visit to the Jimmy Carter National Historic Site, including his boyhood home and school, so they could get a better feel and understanding of the values that shaped this great Georgian. We listened to the messages recorded by the former President that tell visitors of his experiences as a child and young man and how they influenced his views and values. After touring the Depression-era farm, home and school where he grew into manhood, every one of my staff members, including a number from Georgia and several who are not, told me they were inspired by what they learned about the life of Jimmy Carter, just as I have been.

The eventual passage of this bill will ensure that the Jimmy Carter National Historic Site has the resources it needs to continue to inspire generation after generation of visitors.

Additionally, the investments made in this property will positively impact the economic development of Plains and the surrounding Sumter County by providing increased opportunities for tourism.

The Jimmy Carter National Historic Site already does a remarkable job of helping people to understand the values that shaped this great Georgian. This bill will ensure that the site will continue to inspire generations of visitors, as well as grow and positively impact the economies of Plains. I urge my colleagues to support H.R. 1471, and I yield the floor.