Congressman Sanford Bishop

Representing the 2nd District of Georgia

House Subcommittee Holds Hearing To Discuss Jimmy Carter National Historic Site

May 14, 2009
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – The U.S. House of Representative’s Natural Resources Committee today held a hearing on H.R. 1471, legislation to expand the Jimmy Carter National Historic Site in Plains, Ga. Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02) spoke at the hearing, which was hosted by the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests and Public Lands.

“I was pleased to sponsor this bipartisan legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives,” Bishop said at the hearing. “If passed, it 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.”

Also speaking at today’s hearing in support of the bill was Georgia State Representative Mike Cheokas, who is presently serving his third term as a member of the Georgia House of Representatives for District 134, which includes the city of Plains.

“The legislation would create new opportunities that would allow people of all walks of life to enjoy a walk back in time in our country's proud history,” Cheokas said. “The items to be included in the legislation would provide our fellow Americans rich historical perspectives of President Jimmy Carter and rural life in America years ago.”

Representing the National Park Service, Stephen P. Whitesell, the Associate Director of Park Planning, Facilities, and Lands, also spoke in support of H.R. 1471.

“The Department supports enactment of H.R. 1471,” Whitesell said. “This legislation would authorize the addition of properties to the Jimmy Carter historic site that would help broaden public understanding of the life and work of President Carter and enhance the visitor experience in Plains, Georgia.”

In summary, the bill seeks to 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 would redesignate the park from a national historic site to a national historical park and would direct that that the park preserve and interpret a southern agricultural-based rural community during the early to middle years of the 20th century.