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Common Bonds. Funding Strategies for State Stewardship of Historic and Cultural Properties. Presentation to the Governor’s Advisory Council on Historic & Cultural Properties, May 22-23, 2006. Common Sources of State Preservation Funding. Annual appropriations Bonds

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common bonds

Common Bonds

Funding Strategies for State Stewardship of Historic and Cultural Properties

Presentation to the Governor’s Advisory Council on Historic & Cultural Properties, May 22-23, 2006

common sources of state preservation funding
Common Sources of State Preservation Funding
  • Annual appropriations
  • Bonds
  • Directed tax revenue or fees
  • Lottery and gaming revenue
  • Interest allocation from state funds

Legislative Appropriation

  • Annual or one time appropriations for specific programs andprojects
  • Seed money for new program
  • One time funding for a loan fund or endowment

Annual Appropriations

  • Florida Special Category Grants
    • Grants for site acquisition and preservation
    • Grants range from $50,000 to $250,000
    • Average of $10M awarded annually

Georgia Heritage Grant Program

  • Since 1994, Georgia Legislature has
  • appropriated funds for Heritage Grants
  • Administered by the Georgia Historic
  • Preservation Division
  • Provides funds for preserving historic
  • properties and archaeological sites
  • Approximately 20 projects awarded
  • annually

Hometown Indiana Matching Grants Program

  • $5 million biannual appropriation in 1998
  • for local parks, urban forestry, historic
  • preservation and archaeology
  • Of this amount, $1 million for preservation
  • Administered by the Indiana State Historic
  • Preservation Office
  • Second appropriation for 2000-2002
  • providing $200K for preservation grants

Wyoming Cultural Trust Fund

  • Authorized by the Wyoming Legislature in
  • 1998
  • Endowed Fund to support history, culture,
  • and preservation projects
  • $5 million appropriated for fund in 2005
selected sites appropriations
Selected Sites Appropriations

Texas Historic Courthouse Program

Texas Historical Commission received a $50 million appropriation to provide matching grants for the restoration of historic county courthouses

new york barn restoration and preservation grant program
New York Barn Restoration and Preservation Grant Program

Since 2000, the New York Assembly has appropriated $ 2 million annually for the preservation of historic barns



  • Types of Bonds:
    • General Obligation Bonds backed by the
    • taxing authority of the issuer
    • Revenue Bonds backed by a revenue
    • stream created by the project being
    • funded through fees and charges to
    • facility users

General Obligation Bonds

  • California Heritage Fund
  • In 2002, California voters passed
  • Proposition 40 providing $267 million for
  • historic preservation and cultural resource
  • protection
  • Bond included funds for clean air and
  • clean water, coastal protection and
  • neighborhood parks
  • Eligible recipients are government entities
  • and non-profit organizations
  • First grants made in May 2005

Rhode Island

  • In 2002 and 2004, voters approved a bond
  • issue to establish a grant program for the
  • Rhode Island Historical Preservation &
  • Heritage Commission to fund capital
  • preservation at public historic sites,
  • museums and cultural art centers located in
  • historic buildings
  • To date, $4M awarded to 59 properties
  • $1 million available for 2006

Mississippi Community Preservation Grant Program

2002 Legislature authorized $5.5M in bonds for the preservation and restoration of historic courthouses, schools and other historic properties in Certified Local Governments (CLG) communities


Nevada Fund for the Preservation and Promotion of Cultural Resources

  • Created by the Legislature in 1991 and
  • administered by the Nevada Commission for
  • Cultural Affairs
  • Commission can issue up to $3 million in
  • general obligation bonds per year
  • Applicant must be government entity or
  • nonprofit applying for the rehabilitation of
  • an historic property

Revenue Bonds

  • New Jersey Historic Preservation Trust Fund
  • Will receive $6 million annually for 10
  • years through the Garden State
  • Preservation Trust that provides $98M a
  • year for preservation of parks, natural
  • lands, farmland and historic sites
  • Bonds will be repaid through state sales
  • and use tax

Real Estate Transfer Tax

Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Grants and Trust Fund

$2.20 tax on every thousand dollars on the conveyance of real property that is more than $100



  • Managed by the Arkansas Natural and
  • Cultural Resources Council
  • 80% credited to the Trust Fund for the
  • acquisition, management and stewardship of
  • state owned lands or for the preservation of
  • state owned historic sites or objects


10% distributed to the Parks and Tourism Fund, for grants for outdoor recreational purposes to city and counties



10% credited to the Natural & Cultural Resources Historic Preservation Trust Fund, for operation of the state historic preservation program and the “Main Street” program


Kansas Heritage Trust Fund

  • Funded by 1 cent of every 26 cents collected
  • from county mortgage registration fees
  • Fund contribution capped at $100K
  • Since 1990, nearly $10M has been awarded
  • State owned properties are not eligible

Vermont Housing and Conservation Trust Fund

  • Funded through a dedicated portion of the
  • Property Transfer Tax (50% of tax
  • revenue, which generally provides for a tax
  • of 5/10 of 1% to 1.25% depending on value
  • and use of property
  • Funds can be used for affordable housing,
  • protecting agricultural land, natural areas
  • and recreation lands, and historic
  • properties

Real Estate Recording Fee

  • In 2005, Connecticut passed a real
  • estate recording fee that generates
  • $25 million each year for 4 programs:
  • Historic Preservation
  • The Connecticut Housing Finance Authority
  • The Department of Environmental Protection
  • The Department of Agriculture


  • Historic Preservation
    • $200,000, annually, to supplement the
    • technical assistance and preservation
    • activities for the Connecticut Trust for
    • Historic Preservation
    • Remainder to supplement historic
    • preservation activities as mandated by
    • law

Multiple Source Funds

  • Maryland Historical Trust Grant Fund
    • Grants for historic preservation and
    • support for historic and cultural
    • museums assistance
    • $1.1 million in grants awarded in 2005

Sources of funds for MHT Grant Program

  • State Appropriations
  • Proceeds from resale or lease of properties
  • originally acquired by the Trust from the
  • MHT Fund or the Capital Grant Fund
  • Private gifts
  • Proceeds from the sale of State General
  • Obligation Funds

Massachusetts Community Preservation Trust Fund

  • The program is funded by an up to 3%
  • surcharge on property deeds or liens,
  • through private donations and state
  • appropriations
  • Money is distributed through a statutory
  • formula to cities and towns and can be
  • used for historic preservation, open space
  • protection and community housing

Pennsylvania Keystone Historic Preservation Grant Program

  • Established by the General Assembly in
  • 1993 using revenue from voter approved
  • sale of bonds and from a portion of the
  • state realty transfer tax
  • Bonds retired after 3 years; funding now
  • comes from real estate transfer tax
  • Real estate transfer tax also used to rehab
  • and maintain stated owned historic sites
  • and museums

Gaming Tax Revenues

  • Colorado State Historical Fund
  • In 1990, voters approved a constitutional
  • amendment to allow limited stakes gaming
  • in 3 historic mining communities
  • 28% of tax on gaming directed to historic
  • preservation

Colorado State Historical Fund

  • Approximately $15M is available for
  • distribution annually for preservation
  • projects
  • Operating costs for the Colorado Historical
  • Society come from the Fund

Deadwood Fund, SD

  • Funded by proceeds from the gaming tax,
  • license fees, application fees and net
  • proceeds from five-cent slot machines in
  • Deadwood, South Dakota
  • $400,000 available annually for historic
  • restoration and preservation projects

Lottery Funds

Arizona State Parks Board receives up to

$10 million annually. 17% or $1.7 million

is distributed through a competitive grant

process to local, regional, and statewide

preservation projects.


The Preserving Oregon Grant Program

  • Supported by the 2005 Oregon Assembly’s
  • appropriation of $250,000 of Lottery Funds
  • to the State Historic Preservation Office
  • and Oregon Parks and Recreation
  • Department
  • Funds support rehabilitation work of
  • properties listed on National Register

State Revolving Funds

  • Delaware Preservation Fund
  • Established in 2000 with an appropriation
  • of $250,000 from the Legislature
  • Matched by $250,000 in grants from 2
  • private foundations
  • Legislature provided an additional $250,000
  • in 2005
  • Money can be used for acquisition, loans,
  • and easement acquisition

Interest from State Funds

  • Mississippi Landmark Grant Program
  • Provides interest earned on $10M from
  • Abandoned Property Fund for grant
  • program
  • Estimated $500,000 available annually

License Plate Fees

A very popular method of providing state support and a number of states have instituted plates that support historic preservation efforts

State investment costs are minimal, being limited to creating and advertising the availability of plate and administering its use


Idaho Centennial License Plate

  • Plate fee paid once every 7 years and
  • amounts to $1.00 per licensed vehicle
  • Funds preserved in perpetuity in an
  • endowment fund
  • Fund now exceeds $4 million in plate fees
  • and private dollars raised
  • Interest used for bricks and mortar
  • projects
  • $1.2 million awarded

Michigan Lighthouse Assistance Program

  • $25 received from the sale of each plate
  • Over the past five years, annual grants
  • range from $12K to $66K

New Hampshire Conservation License Plate

  • $30 from the sale of each plate
  • Money used to preserve scenic lands,
  • wildlife and historic sites in New
  • Hampshire

Other Examples…

Charity racing day law provides that the Historical Resources Operating Trust Fund must be designated recipient charity for proceeds of any authorized charity racing day.


Florida provides Matching Grants for historic preservation from funds derived from the licensing of fictitious names for businesses, approximately $1.5 million per year.


Barbara Pahl

National Trust for Historic Preservation