Belton has been awarded Gold level Scenic City Certification by Scenic Texas. Belton is one of 20 Texas cities to have earned the five-year certification this year.Scenic City Certification Program is a project of Scenic Texas and its statewide program partners. It is the first program of its kind in the U.S. to incorporate a comprehensive set of model standards for design and development of public roadways and public spaces into one program. Texas cities apply to the Program for evaluation of existing standards against the Scenic City model. The Scenic City Certification Program’s goal is to recognize cities with strong scenic infrastructure standards, and to provide a valuable planning tool for cities.“Scenic City certification shows a commitment to preserving streetscapes and protecting quality of life for Belton residents,” Belton Planning Director Erin Smith said. “We are extremely proud of receiving Gold certification for the second time and plan to maintain our certification status for years to come.”Earning certification is straightforward. To be eligible, a city must have:• strict sign standards that are regulated and enforced• ban new billboards• landscape and tree planting program.Under the scoring system that analyzes 70-plus criteria cities may qualify to earn Recognized, Bronze, Silver, Gold or Platinum Certification. The scoring criteria ranges from percentage of park and open space, strong litter enforcement laws, street lighting standards, to parking lot landscaping, utility line management, and more.Belton was first certified in the inaugural Scenic City Certification class of 2010. In comments related to Belton’s recertification, Scenic Texas took note of Belton’s historic preservation efforts, façade improvement grant program, and adopt-a-street program.Belton will accept its award, along with other recognized municipalities, at a reception that will be part of the annual Texas Municipal League conference on Thursday, September 24, 2015 at The Grand Hyatt in San Antonio.