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Preservation Advocacy and Public Policy Issues

Government policies and decisions at the local, state, and federal levels have a major impact on neighborhoods, rural areas, and downtowns throughout Virginia. Preservation Virginia works with our partners and our network of preservationists to build public support for preservation, identify priority issues that impact our cultural, architectural, and historic heritage, develop action strategies to respond to challenges and to take advantage of opportunities, and achieve success on significant preservation issues.

Legislative Alerts

Constituents need to remind governmental leaders about the positive economic, educational, and community benefits of preservation, and to ensure that preservation values are considered in making decisions about growth, development, transportation, and other important issues.

Get Involved!  To sign up for our Legislative Alert emails (and our monthly eNewsletters), click here.


Advocacy Opportunities at the State and Local Level

2016 Virginia General Assembly Session

The Virginia General Assembly Session began on January 13, 2016. Preservation Virginia is monitoring bill filings and the budget discussion to share with you the latest developments and how they will impact historic preservation across the Commonwealth. Here are some simple but significant steps you can take:

  1. Sign up for the Preservation Alerts that will be issued each Monday during the General Assembly session, click here.
  2. Take action when needed to help support legislation and budget issues related to historic preservation.  
  3. Know who your Delegates and Senator are and be prepared to speak to them about important preservation issues.  To find out your legislators click here
  4. Let us know if you take action, and if you hear back from your legislator.
  5. Attend Preservation Virginia’s legislative reception on February 11, 2016, click here for more information. 

Defending the State Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit

Virginia’s tax credits for historic rehabilitation are an incredibly successful tool that has saved historic buildings, helped revitalize communities, and added an estimated $3.9 billion to the state’s economic health. Yet these credits have been under attack. Here are two important resources to help us spread the word about the importance of this valuable tool:

Defending Virginia’s Land Preservation Tax Credit

Given the budget pressures facing Virginia, Governor McAuliffe has proposed changes to the Land Preservation Tax Credit that will reduce the amount of tax credit individuals or couples can claim each year.  The Governor did not propose reducing the overall size of the program ($100 million per year).  Some legislators have suggested steeper cuts in the state’s primary land conservation tool.

Virginia’s Most Endangered Historic Places list

Each year in May, Preservation Virginia announces its Most Endangered Historic Places list in order to heighten awareness of the threats to resources around the Commonwealth.  To learn more about the list visit:


Advocacy Opportunities at the Federal Level

Preservation Virginia and the National Trust for Historic Preservation are working together to improve historic preservation policies at the federal level.  The next Congressional session is likely to bring a review of many sources of revenue.  The federal Historic Tax Credit (HTC) program has been a great incentive for revitalization, job creation, and revenue generation.  We need to ensure that the program continues to be a source for this kind of development.

Creating American Prosperity through Preservation (CAPP) Act, bipartisan legislation that would increase the HTC's ability to revitalize smaller Main Street projects and enable energy-efficient projects. The National Trust, in partnership with the Historic Tax Credit Coalition, is leading a multi-year effort to preserve and enhance the Tax Credit program.  You can help:

  • Ask your Representatives and Senators to co-sponsor the CAPP Act.
  • Highlight projects in your area and make people aware of how tax credits made the project possible.

Learn more at:

Here are some useful resources on federal tax credits: