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National Heritage Areas

The Santa Cruz Valley Heritage Alliance has been working towards designation of the Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area since 2003. With broad and bi-partisan representation and support, the Heritage Alliance developed a feasibility study for the National Heritage Area in 2005. 

March 2013 - Congressman Raúl Grijalva and Congressman Ron Barber have introduced legislation to designate the Santa Cruz Valley as a National Heritage Area! The Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area Act (H.R. 1349) is a non-regulatory designation made by Congress to honor and celebrate the region's contribution to America's history, while also stimulating heritage-based economic development and geo-tourism in the region.

Please join us in thanking our Congressmen for supporting this 10-year community-based effort to give our region the national recognition it deserve. 

2011-2012 Archives:
The Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area Act (H.R. 2037) was introduced in the U. S. House of Representatives on May 26, 2011 by Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva. The Heritage Alliance is identified as the local coordinating entity for the Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area and will be responsible for promoting the heritage area and coordinating heritage education projects, with extensive public input and participation. 

NHAs stimulate local heritage-based economic development by marketing regional heritage tourism, and promoting place-based foods, arts, crafts, and other traditional products. 

The proposed boundaries of the Santa Cruz Valley NHA were selected because they mark an area that is a source of identity for residents, is a coherent natural and cultural landscape, and contains sufficient nature and heritage resources of national significance to support a NHA designation and promote heritage tourism. The boundary does not impose any additional local, state or federal regulations. It simply identifies areas eligible to participate in Heritage Area programs.  

The Heritage Alliance applauds Congressman Grijalva and Congresswoman Giffords for supporting this legislation, which not only celebrates our rich cultural heritage, but also supports heritage-based economic development throughout the Santa Cruz Valley.
Archives from 110th and 111th Congress

The Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area Act was first introduced in the House in April 2007.  The first congressional hearing was held July 12, 2007 with the Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands.  Linda Mayro, member of the Board of Directors of the Santa Cruz Valley Heritage Alliance, provided testimony at the hearing.  

On September 26, 2007 an amended version of the bill (see Subtitle F, page 100 in H.R. 1483) was approved by the Natural Resources Committee.  On October 24, 2007 the bill was approved by the U.S. House of Representatives.   

The Santa Cruz Valley National Heritage Area Act (H.R. 324) was introduced in the U. S. House of Representatives on January 8, 2009 by Congressman Raúl M. Grijalva and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, and was approved by the House on September 23, 2009.  The bill died in the Senate at the end of the session in 2010 due to lack of action by our Senators.