This bill, the Reviving America's Scenic Byways Act of 2019, would direct the Secretary of Transportation to reopen the National Scenic Byways Program to new nominations. The Dept. of Transportation (DOT) would make a request for nominations available on its website. It’d also publish the request for nominations in the Federal Register. Finally, once roads to be designated as National Scenic Byways were identified, the DOT would publish a list of those roads.
What is House Bill H.R. 831?
Cost of House Bill H.R. 831
In-Depth: Rep. David Cicilline (D-RI) reintroduced this bill from the 115th Congress to reopen the National Scenic Byways Program to new nominations. Scenic America supports this legislation. Its president, Mark Falzone, says:
“Scenic America is thrilled with [this bill]. Scenic byways both protect America's scenic and historic places and contribute to strong local economies, and the federal designation means these roads are sought out as destinations by both domestic and international travelers… It's critical that we provide... local [scenic] byways with the opportunity to seek the federal designation and reap the well-established benefits.”
In the current Congress, this bill has one cosponsor, Rep. Garret Graves (R-LA). Last Congress, it passed the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee by a voice vote with the support of eight bipartisan cosponsors, including seven Democrats and one Republican. This bill has historically been supported by Scenic America, the American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association (AIANTA), RV Industry Association, and the Outdoor Recreation Roundtable.
Of Note: Since its inception in 1991, the National Scenic Byways program has designated 150 special roads across the U.S. as National Scenic Byways. However, the last round of designations occurred in 2009, and Congress pulled support for the program in 2012 transportation legislation.
Scenic byways have been shown to generate millions of dollars in economic activity for the areas they go through. In a 2010 report, researchers at the University of Minnesota found that traveler spending along the Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway and Lake Country Scenic Byway had a $21.6 million economic impact. In 2013, a study of Scenic Byway 12 in Utah found that it generated nearly $13 million annually in local spending.
Markup (Previous Congress)
Scenic America Press Release (In Favor, 115th Congress)
American Indian Alaska Native Tourism Association (AIANTA) Press Release (In Favor, 115th Congress)
Outdoor Recreation Roundtable Press Release (In Favor, 115th Congress)
Summary by Lorelei Yang(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / fotoMonkee)
Reviving America's Scenic Byways Act of 2019
To direct the Secretary of Transportation to request nominations for and make determinations regarding roads to be designated under the national scenic byways program, and for other purposes.
- EnactedSeptember 22nd, 2019The President signed this bill into law
- The senate has not voted
Committee on Environment and Public Works
- senate Committees
- The house Passed February 6th, 2019Roll Call Vote 404 Yea / 19 Nay
Committee on Transportation and InfrastructureIntroducedJanuary 29th, 2019
- house Committees