- Associated Press - Monday, December 8, 2014

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran is expecting a vote in the Senate as early as this week on legislation to allow the Vicksburg National Military Park to add 10,000 acres to protect historic Civil War battlefield sites in Claiborne and Hinds counties.

Cochran and Sen. Roger Wicker, both R-Miss., co-sponsored the bill. It passed the U.S. House this past week.

The legislation addresses three areas: the Port Gibson Unit in Claiborne County and the Raymond Unit and Champion Hill Unit, both in Hinds County.

Cochran says the National Park Service designates such areas as a “modified core battlefield” site.

The land includes several historic homes, such as the Shaifer House at Port Gibson and the Coker House at Champion Hill, which the Park Service would maintain if added to VNMP.

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