AUSTIN (October 30, 2013) Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson was trying again Wednesday to quash “spectacular and erroneous reports” that have gone viral on the Internet that San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro is negotiating to surrender the Alamo to the United Nations.
“Horse hockey,” Patterson said in response to reports the U.N. flag will fly over the Texas shrine.
The rumors sprang from an effort to add the Alamo and other Spanish missions in San Antonio to the UNESCO World Heritage List, which Patterson said would not have any effect on authority over or ownership of any of the landmarks.
“Some folks might think that getting on this list means the U.N. has some sort of influence at the Alamo. Those folks must not be from around here,” Patterson said in a press release Wednesday.
“The people of Texas own the Alamo now and in the future. Nothing is going to change that.”
“My legal team at the Land Office has reviewed this. I have personally met with the National Park Service staff working on this nomination and I am absolutely satisfied that a World Heritage Nomination will have no effect on the Alamo other than a possible increase in foreign tourists.”
Patterson linked the U.N.’s World Heritage List to the National Historic Landmark program operated by the National Parks System.
“Just because the Alamo is a National Historic Landmark does not mean the federal government owns the Alamo,” Patterson said.
“It’s a tourism designation indicating it’s a place of historic significance. That is all. Same goes for the World Heritage List.”