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CLG Map, Iowa Certified Local Government Program, State Historical Society of Iowa
Bureau for Historic Preservation.
Certified Local Government Program, Historic Preservation, Montana Historical Society. Image: Radio Livingston (KPRK), Livingston, Montana.

Certified Local Government (CLG)

The CLG program allows local governments to strengthen their preservation efforts by achieving Certified Local Government status from the National Park Service and the State Historic Preservation Office/State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO). This partnership — between local governments and the SHPO — provides municipalities with technical assistance and small (approximately $2,000 to $12,000) matching grants and allows communities to participate more formally in federal and state historic preservation programs. A minimum of 10 percent of the State's annual federal monies from the Historic Preservation Fund is earmarked for CLG programs.

The CLG programs seeks to develop and maintain local historic preservation programs that will influence the zoning and permitting decisions critical to preserving historic properties and ensures the broadest possible participation of local governments in the national historic preservation program while maintaining preservation standards.

Local governments seeking certification must meet the following standards as outlined in the National Historic Preservation Act:

  1. Enforce appropriate state/local legislation for the designation and protection of historic properties;
  2. Establish an adequate and qualified historic preservation review commission by state/local legislation;
  3. Maintain a system for the survey and inventory of historic properties;
  4. Provide for adequate public participation in the local historic preservation program, including the process of recommending properties to the National Register;
  5. Satisfactorily perform the responsibilities delegated to it under the National Historic Preservation Acts Amendments of the 1980 and those specifically designated to it by the SHPO.

By participating in the CLG program, local governments can assume a leadership role in the preservation of their community's resources; have a formal role in the National Register of Historic Places nomination process; participate in the establishment of regional and state historic preservation objectives and be eligible to apply for CLG grants.

Grants are given to projects, which further the goals of identification, evaluation, nomination and protection of a community's historic resources. They may be used to produce historic and cultural resource surveys, assessments of properties to determine their eligibility for local and National Register of Historic Places designation, building reuse and feasibility studies, design guidelines and conservation ordinances and publications to educated the public about the benefits of historic preservation.

Grant categories are typically for:

  1. Surveys of architectural or archaeological resources
  2. Preparation of National Register of Historic Places nominations for local heritage resources
  3. Heritage stewardship planning projects — historic preservation plans, archaeological assessments, preservation components of comprehensive plans
  4. Public education programs concerned with the heritage stewardship program, the local resources, or any of the broad benefits that are associated with a heritage stewardship program
  5. Local review board training and education projects such as development of materials or programs, including training sessions
  6. Testing archaeological sites to determine their significance
  7. Rehabilitation of publicly owned buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places

Source: Certified Local Government, Connecticut Trust For Historic Preservation