Mint News Blog

News, Information, and Commentary on US Mint Products

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

2010 National Parks Quarters

It looks like we're going to have another lengthy series of circulating commemorative quarters with rotating reverse designs.

In all likelihood, the bill known as H.R. 6184 America's Beautiful National Parks Quarter Dollar Coin Act of 2008 will soon become law, authorizing a new series of National Park Quarters. The legislation passed in the House on July 9, 2008 and recently passed in the Senate on December 10, 2008. The bill now awaits the president's signature.

The new program would be similar to the prior 50 State Quarters Program. The legislation would authorize a new series of quarters with reverse designs emblematic of a National Park or National Site in each State, the District of Columbia, and each US Territory.

The quarters would be issued in the order that the park or site was first established as a National Park or National Site. The series feature five new designs per year until a site or park has been featured from every state, Washington DC, and every US territory. The legislation also allows for a possible extension for a second round of designs, at the option of the Secretary of the Treasury.

When the legislation was first introduced in June, many coin collectors were already criticizing the new program as "too much of a good thing." The 50 State Quarters Program created millions of new coin collectors and made countless others start to take a closer look at coins in circulation. The idea of frequently changing coins designs was novel and exciting in 1999.

Ten years later, the concept of rotating designs is now approaching the point of being over used. In fact, in 2009 there will be more circulating coin series with rotating designs than series with static designs. Coins with rotating designs will include the Lincoln Cent, DC & US Territories Quarters, Presidential Dollars, and Native American Dollars. This compares to coins with static designs: Jefferson Nickel, Roosevelt Dime, and Kennedy Half.

On the other hand, the series does have the potential to create some beautiful and unique designs. Some of the better designs for the State Quarter series have featured National Parks, such as the Arizona State Quarter featuring the Grand Canyon, the Oregon State Quarter featuring Crater Lake, or the West Virginia State Quarter featuring New River Gorge.

The new series would also help bring a greater appreciation of the US National Park System just as the 50 State Quarters showed Americans the diversity and uniqueness of each state.

What do you think? Discuss the pros and cons of the National Park Quarters on Coin Network.



At December 17, 2008 at 1:21 PM , Anonymous Doug (zapdbf) said...

When it comes to rotating designs, US coins now have an opportunity to have low mintages. We really have not seen that many low mintages for a long time. Although will the collecting community embrace this. It is a fine line that the mint is treading.

At December 24, 2008 at 4:57 AM , Blogger Jake said...

Terrible news. President Bush signed this into law.


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