Commemorative coin programs are known to be able raise a lot of money for many organizations. This past year, congress authorized commemorative coins to support the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation and the construction of the National Museum of the United States Army at Fort Belvoir. These and other organizations have greatly benefitted from collectors and other interested people buying commemoratives.
With that in mind, Dave Harper of Numismatic News has suggested that commemorative be issued to repair the Washington Monument that was damaged during the earthquake in the Washington, DC area on August 23, 2011.
Dave reports that $7.5 million was appropriated to the National Parks Service with hopes that it could be equally matched with private donations.
In 1986, the Statue of Liberty commemorative raised $81 million for the repairs needed before her 100th birthday. Why not do the same for the Washington Monument?
Harper suggests that the Washington Monument may not generate as much interest as the Statue of Liberty. That may be so, but why limit the the program to just the Washington Monument? How about a The National Monument Commemorative Coin Act of 2012?
The National Monument Commemorative Coin Act of 2012 will honor all of the United States’s national monuments, the U.S. Mint would issue one silver dollar commemorating all national monuments and five half-dollars commemorating various national monuments. The silver dollar could use the logo of the National Park Service that manages 76 of the 101 registered national monuments. As for the half-dollars, the suggested national monuments could include the Washington Monument, Mount Rushmore, the boyhood home of George Washington Carver, the Great Sequoia in Sequoia National Park, and the Navajo Monument on the Shonto plateau
Proceeds from the surcharges collected by the sales of these coins would be placed in a trust fund managed by the Department of the Interior that could only be used for the maintenance of all national monuments, including the Washington Monument.
If you think this is a good idea, please let your member of congress know. You can find your representative at the House website by entering your zip code +4 in the box on the upper right of the page. Use any of the information mentioned above to tell them how good of an idea this is.