Georgia Department of Natural Resources Commissioner Mark W. Williams announced the award of six Georgia Heritage Grants, totaling almost $80,000, to support historic preservation projects throughout the state.
The grants, made possible by the purchase and annual renewal of Georgia’s Historic Preservation license plate, will aid preservation projects located across the state, including two schools (one, a historic African-American school building), a pair of courthouses, a cemetery, and a former plantation slave cabin.
In total, $79,854 will be awarded through this year’s grants (State Fiscal Year 2017).
“Georgia’s historic resources make our state unique and play an important role in our everyday lives,” said Commissioner Williams. “Good conservation practices are important so that Georgia’s future generations can utilize and enjoy these significant and often scarce resources. This grant program has made a significant impact over the years, benefiting a wide range of historic preservation projects. We look forward to continuing this program for many years.”
The Georgia Heritage grant program was initiated in 1995, and since 2009 has been funded solely through revenue generated by sales of the historic preservation specialty license plate. The SFY 2017 grant cycle award is the largest awarded, in terms of both dollars and projects funded, since 2009. This year’s award brings the total amount of license plate funds awarded between 2009 and 2017 to $206,539, benefiting a total of 16 projects.
The SFY 2017 awards are as follows:
Cassina Garden Club — $21, 134 for tabby/stucco repair at the Hamilton Plantation Slave Cabins on St. Simons Island, Glynn County.
City of Jefferson — $12,000 for a preservation plan for the Jackson County Courthouse, located in Jefferson.
Friends of Historic Claflin — $18,000 for conditions and environmental assessment reports for the African-American Claflin School, in Columbus, Muscogee County.
Historic Oakland Foundation — $5,220 for a carriage house conditions assessment and design guidelines, as part of a 2008 master plan update for Oakland Cemetery, Atlanta, Fulton County.
North Alexander School, Inc. — $16,000 for repair/rehabilitation of the N. Alexander School bell tower, in Washington, Wilkes County.
Polk County Board of Commissioners — $7,500 for a conditions assessment of the Polk County Courthouse #2 (historically the Cedartown City Hall) in Cedartown, Polk County.
The Georgia Heritage Grant Program is administered by the Historic Preservation Division (HPD), Ga. DNR, and is intended to provide financial assistance to non-profit organizations and local governments for preservation activities in the categories of preservation predevelopment and development (“bricks and mortar”) projects. Since the program’s creation in 1995, more than $3.5 million in matching grants have been awarded to a total of 254 preservation projects.
Historic Preservation Division Director Dr. Dave Crass said: “When the Georgia Heritage Grant Program was created in 1995, it was envisioned as a ‘seed’ grant program to do exactly what we’ve seen happen with the Tybee Post Theatre, our first license plate grant project. That $20,000 Georgia Heritage grant award has subsequently generated more than $500,000 in private and civic donations due to community support and enthusiasm for the project. We hope to see similar community financial support follow for all the projects that receive awards.”
The historic preservation license plate was authorized by the Georgia General Assembly and signed into law in 2005. The license plate can be purchased at county tag offices. To learn more about the license plate and how to purchase, people may visit HPD’s website, georgiashpo.org/support, or contact HPD’s grants coordinator Carole Moore at 770-389-7848, firstname.lastname@example.org.