FLORENCE– The U.S. Department of the Interior has approved Muscle Shoals National Heritage Area’s management plan, which means that MSNHA can receive more federal funds for local interpretive projects, said director Judy Sizemore.
“This is the first major milestone in MSNHA’s path toward sustainability,” she added.
Authorized by Congress in 2009, MSNHA is part of the National Heritage Area program that protects, promotes and preserves places around the country that contribute to America’s cultural heritage. The MSNHA focuses on the Tennessee River, Native Americans and music in Colbert, Franklin, Lauderdale,
Lawrence, Limestone and Morgan counties.
“Congress and the National Park Service require Heritage Areas to develop a management plan that encompasses strategic planning, goals, a business plan, marketing initiatives and inventories of historic and natural resources. Writing our plan was a three-year effort with support from community leaders, government officials, the University of North Alabama and others who attended our public meetings and submitted comments online,” Sizemore said.
Congress named UNA the fiduciary for MSNHA. Under the university’s direction, MSNHA began to develop the organizational structure needed to carry out the legislative mandate.
“The plan, which was informed by numerous stakeholders, demonstrates the advantages of the partnership between the Interior Department and Heritage Areas,” he said. “MSNHA contains some of our nation’s most important historic, cultural and natural resources. We look forward to working with you on the implementation of the plan and our mutually held resource-protection objectives.”
For details on MSNHA, visit the website at http://msnha.una.edu/.
MEDIA RELEASE/Muscle Shoals National Heritage Area/University of North Alabama/Cathy Wood, media coordinator