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John Adams memorial bill set for vote in House

A proposed memorial in the nation's capital to President John Adams got a step closer to a new lease on life. The House can now vote on reviving authority to raise money for such a memorial. The House Committee on Natural Resources officially reported H.R. 3802, which would revive the authority, which was granted in 2001 but expired last December. The Adams Memorial Foundation failed to raise enough non-federal money on time.

The committee report officially became available online on the congressional website on Wednesday, July 2. The bill was placed on the Union Calendar as item No. 377. The House can vote on it when it gets back from its 4th of July recess. A companion bill (S 1866) has been pending before the Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources since December with no action yet.

The bill would give the non-profit foundation until Dec. 2, 2020 to come up with the money. The monument would go on unspecified federal land in or near the District of Columbia. Since the money would be raised privately, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that it would not significantly impact the federal budget.

The legislation states that at least 10 percent of the budget plus any leftover funds go to a fund managed by the non-profit National Park Foundation for upkeep and maintenance of the memorial, in compliance with the Commemorative Works Act. The memorial would honor President John Adams and other distinguished members of his family; including his wife, first lady Abigail Adams; and his son, President John Quincy Adams.

The committee approved the bill to honor our second president by unanimous consent in April but did not officially report it until now. The Obama Administration endorsed the bill. It is still not clear, though, what would happen to any money raised if the foundation fails to meet the new deadline.