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State Fiscal Year 2006 Annual Report

Ohio Historic Preservation Office
Collections, Historic Preservation and Statewide Outreach Services Division
Ohio Historical Society

State Fiscal Year 2006 Annual Report

The Society's Ohio Historic Preservation Office (OHPO) is the official historic preservation agency of the State of Ohio. It has developed since 1967 when the Ohio Historical Society was designated to manage responsibilities delegated to the state by Congress in the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966. The Ohio Historic Preservation Office:
  • identifies historic places and archaeological sites
  • nominates eligible properties to the National Register of Historic Places
  • reviews rehabilitation work to income-producing National Register properties for federal investment tax credits
  • monitors federally-assisted projects for effects on historic, architectural, and archaeological resources
  • consults on the conservation of buildings and sites
  • offers educational programs and publications

The office has a staff of archaeologists, historians, architectural historians, a historical architect, and others with professional expertise in preservation-related fields. The office is funded in part by an annual grant from the U.S. Department of the Interior's Historic Preservation Fund. The Ohio Historical Society, State of Ohio, and other public and private sources match the federal funds.

Historic Preservation Fund Grant
The Society received $789,605 in 2006, from the U.S. Department of the Interior's Historic Preservation Fund, an increase of $6,117 over 2005. Ohio's grant was the seventh highest of more than 50 made to states and territories. Funds are apportioned to the states by the National Park Service based on a formula that takes into account a basic allocation to each state, as well as state land area, population, and number of residences over 50 years old. The Historic Preservation Fund grant requires a 40 percent match. Of the $526,403 required to match Ohio's 2006 award, the State of Ohio allocated $281,041 to help meet the matching share-level with the previous year. The Society provides other non-cash match through its federally negotiated indirect cost rate.

Staff continued to administer the Certified Local Governments (CLG) Program. Forty-one Ohio communities now participate in the program. Staff provided training for architectural review boards in Berea, Galion and Tipp City. Training is offered to all Certified Local Governments but is now mandatory for new CLG's. It covers topics such as why we preserve, the origins and history of historic preservation legislation, the origins and basis for architectural design guidelines and building support for historic preservation. The training also includes case studies that apply architectural design guidelines and ethical scenarios for boards and commissions. The Network, a bimonthly newsletter, provided information and technical assistance for Ohio's CLGs.

Each year, 10 percent of the Historic Preservation Fund grant is re-granted to certified local governments on a competitive basis. 2006 Certified Local Government Grants totaling $78,961 were awarded to 7 CLG communities for 7 projects: $6,600 to Berea to begin the rehabilitation of Berea District 7 School, $5,028 to Glendale to continue their history-architecture survey within the National Historic Landmark District, $7,000 to Lorain to conduct a feasibility study on reuse options for the Eagles Building, $33,733 to Mansfield to rehabilitate the Richland County Home Infirmary for low and moderate-income housing, $8,000 for Medina to develop design guidelines, $6,600 to Parma to continue rehabilitation and stabilization of the Henninger House, as part of the West Creek Reservation and Greenway Trail System, and $12,000 to the state's newest CLG community, Tipp City, to develop a historic preservation plan for their community.

Tax Credits
Ohioans continued to be among the nation's leading users of a federal income tax credit designed to stimulate private investment in preservation of historic properties, a program administered by the Society's Ohio Historic Preservation Office. During state FY2006, the office received well above the yearly average number of applications, yet continued to work with applicants to provide guidance and program information, made appropriate recommendations to NPS, and submitted applications to NPS in a timely fashion. Over the past ten years, application receipts averaged 227; State FY 2006 saw the receipt of 374 applications. During this period 151 projects qualified for Rehabilitation Investment Tax Credits, more than twice the number in FY2005. These projects represented an investment of more than $95.8 million in historic properties statewide.

Important work also took place to develop a state-level tax credit program for rehabilitating structures. By the end of the fiscal year state tax credit legislation had passed the House and was being considered by the Senate.

National Register of Historic Places
The OHPO added 39 listings to the National Register of Historic Places in state FY2006, compared to 38 in state FY2005. Ohio remains third in the nation for the number of National Register listings. This year's nominations, for 30 individual buildings, six historic districts, two sites, and one structure, recognize significant properties in Butler, Clark, Clermont, Clinton, Columbiana, Cuyahoga, Delaware, Franklin, Fulton, Greene, Hamilton, Hancock, Huron, Jefferson, Lucas, Ross, Stark, Summit, Trumbull and Tuscarawas counties.

Nominations included Unit III of the Dayton Project listed for its connection with the 1942-1946 Manhattan Project and the development of atomic weaponry in the United States. Completed in 1942, the Deeds Carillon was added to the National Register for its association with the history of entertainment and the performing arts in the Miami Valley. Designed by the New York architectural firm of Reinhard and Hofmeister in the Art Moderne style, and landscaped by the Olmsted Brothers, the Carillon was built through the efforts of Edith Walton Deeds (1870-1949) and commemorates the Deeds family. Wilberforce University's Emery Hall, built in 1913 and designed by leading early 20th century Columbus architect Frank L. Packard, was added to the National Register for its architectural significance as an example of the Colonial Revival style and for its history of association with Wilberforce, the first predominantly African-American private university in the nation.

Ohio Historic Inventory and Ohio Archaeological Inventory
New sites added to the Ohio Archaeology Inventory (OAI) totaled 1,112; about the same as were recorded in 2005. This inventory now contains over 40,000 entries. Another 1,394 properties were recorded for the Ohio Historic Inventory (OHI), compared to 594 in FY2005. Assistance in processing these site forms was provided through partnerships with a number of university interns and work-study students. Additionally, two paid OSU work-study positions from the Computer Science Dept. assisted in OAI database projects. A capital funded project was initiated in FY2006 to convert 3,000 OHI paper inventory records to digital format. The total number of properties in the Ohio Historic Inventory now numbers over 90,000.

In recent years, the OHPO has digitized its statewide inventory records and developed innovative tools to manage the data using a Geographic Information System (GIS). This computer application, known internally as MAPIT, provides staff with immediate access to the data on inventoried buildings and sites and the ability to query data and produce customized, highly accurate maps. A related Internet-based GIS application provides agencies and researchers with online access to the data as well. In FY 2006, the OHPO released a redesigned version of its Internet-based GIS and saw a 24% increase in usage of the site. This directly translates to a decrease in staff time on data requests and speeds project reviews. The upgrade also sets the stage for a fee-based data access service being launched in SFY 2007.

In FY 2006, the OHPO launched its Internet-based Inventory Form (IForm) application that allows users to complete Ohio Historic Inventory and Ohio Archaeological Inventory forms via the Internet. Updates to the application are transferred to users each time they access the application on the Internet. IForm uses drop down menus to standardize responses and help expedite form completion. The form accepts digital images and collects bibliographic information on archaeological sites for National Archaeological Database submissions. With IForm, the OHPO can import new forms into its databases without additional conversion and export data to PDF versions of completed inventory forms, both of which will reduce inventory form processing time.

The Society received a $100,785 grant from the Ohio Department of Transportation to complete Phase 2 of a project to scan over nearly 700,000 pages of inventory records, including National Register nominations, maintained by the Ohio Historic Preservation Office. The scanned files will be used by ODOT and OHPO staff in their Section 106 reviews of federal projects to quickly access computerized data about identified historic properties and archaeological sites. Having access to these records directly from staff computers will reduce research time and costs for ODOT and enhance the OHPO's GIS capability.

Review of Federally Funded/Licensed Projects
In FY 2006, the OHPO maintained one of the heaviest workloads in the nation, providing comments on more than 6,200 federally assisted projects in Ohio for effects on historic properties. These projects were funded, licensed, and permitted by more than 50 federal agencies, 10 state agencies, and more than 300 local governments. Some examples include renovation of the Metzenbaum Federal Courthouse in Cleveland, construction of an ethanol manufacturing plant in Coshocton, expansion of the Cleveland Art Museum, construction of a large cement plant in Cincinnati, reconstruction of the Cleveland Innerbelt, construction of water treatment facilities in Steubenville and Cleveland, and demolition of structures at the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant.

Staff worked closely with several agencies to improve Section 106 compliance. These included the Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Ohio Emergency Management Agency, the National Park Service, the U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service, and the U.S. Forest Services.

Over the course of the year, the OHPO negotiated 34 project-specific agreements to resolve adverse effects to various buildings, sites, districts and structures; four programmatic agreements that cover major programs or projects, and 28 coordination agreements with agencies on submission protocols. This includes an important statewide programmatic agreement with the Federal Highway Administration, Ohio Department of Transportation, and the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation instituting new procedures to make the review of federally assisted highway projects in Ohio more efficient.

The OHPO developed new, streamlined documentation submission standards for Section 106 projects. Staff created electronic forms, instructions, and a web site to increase the efficiency of the review process. Training classes on the new standards will be held in fiscal year 2007. The new procedures will take effect at the beginning of fiscal year 2007 and are scheduled to become mandatory later in the year. During fiscal year 2006 a major urban redevelopment project in downtown Youngstown was submitted using the new Project Summary Form.

The consulting firm CTL Engineering, wireless telephone service carrier Nextel, as well as the Ohio Department of Transportation and Ohio Department of Development, continued to provide funding support for a total of five full-time review positions. The salaries of half of the staff involved in reviews of federal projects are paid with funds outside regular state and federal appropriations, allowing the OHPO to maintain a high level of service in spite of reductions in state and federal funding since 2001.

Education and Technical Assistance
The popular Building Doctor presentation was revamped, re-focusing the talk to create a virtual site visit, adding practical information, more solutions to problems and how-to images, plus information about safety and seasonal building inspections. Clinics were held in nine Ohio communities in FY 2006, attracting 438 people, a slight increase over the same period in 2005.

The Society's Ohio Historic Preservation Office staff conducted eleven training workshops during 2006. The September 13, 2005 workshops were Ohio Archaeological Inventory, Ohio Historic Inventory, Section 106 Fundamentals, and Section 106 Advanced. Topics for the May 16, 2006 workshops were Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit: How to Apply and Qualify, Financials 101: Planning a Successful Rehabilitation Tax Credit Project, Ohio Historic Inventory, Ohio Archaeological Inventory, and Section 106: What Do I Put in the Envelope? There were two training workshops on using the new IForm application. In total, the workshops were attended by 244 people, up from 178 in 2005, and grossed $19,750 in revenues.

OHPO staff worked with the Ohio National Road Association to publish the Ohio Historic National Road Design Handbook. The handbook is an outgrowth of coordinated planning efforts for the preservation and protection of the of Ohio's portion of the National Road (an All-American Road National Scenic Byway) that began in the mid 1990's. The handbook provides guidance for the protection, enhancement and promotion of the Historic National Road in Ohio, to regional planners, local governments, community activists, property owners and developers, among others.

As part of an agreement with Heritage Ohio, design assistance was provided for a total of seven commercial buildings with challenging design and technical issues in four Main Street communities (Vermilion, Elyria, Norwalk, and Sandusky). Detailed design and technical assistance letters were provided for the buildings. Facade design sketches were prepared for six of the seven buildings.

Ohio Historic Site Preservation Advisory Board
The 17-member Ohio Historic Site Preservation Advisory Board is appointed by the governor to advise the state historic preservation officer and the Ohio Historical Society Board of Trustees on historic preservation issues. The board includes a majority of professionals with expertise in Ohio history, architecture and archaeology and public members from around the state. Board members demonstrate knowledge of and interest in historic preservation.

The advisory board met in August and December of 2005 and April of 2006 to evaluate the significance of properties proposed for nomination to the National Register of Historic Places and make recommendations to the state historic preservation officer. Additionally, the board gave advice on the distribution of federal Certified Local Government grant funds for historic preservation projects in qualifying communities and participated in the selection of the annual Ohio Historic Preservation Office Awards. The April meeting was held at the newly restored Ohio Judicial Center, an Art Deco landmark in Columbus with spectacular interiors and artwork telling the story of Ohio from pre-historic times to the "modern" era.

Professional Activities

Jim Strider, Division Director, served as a Field Reviewer for the American Association of Museum's Accreditation Commission.

Franco Ruffini, Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer, served on the National Council of State Historic Preservation Officers board of directors, the Heritage Ohio Board of Trustees (ex officio member), Preserve America Summit - Fostering Innovation Panel Member, the national Advisory Council on Historic Preservation Archaeology Task Force's Committee on Creative Mitigation, and the Ohio and Erie National Heritage Canalway Committee.

Glenn Harper, Planning and CLG Manager at the OHPO, served on the Heritage Ohio Board of Trustees, Ohio National Road Association Board, Design Commission for Wright-Dunbar Village, and the Springboro Architectural Review Board.

Martha Raymond, head of the OHPO's Technical Preservation Services Department, serves on the Advisory Committee for the Kelton House Museum and Garden in Columbus.

Judy Kitchen, Technical Preservation Services Manager in the OHPO's Technical Preservation Services Department, wrote a FastFacts entitled "About Basic Building Inspection" and taught Architecture 604 (History and Preservation of 19th and 20th Century American Architecture) at The Ohio State University fall quarter 2005.

Steve Gordon, former Survey and National Register Manager, serves on the board and chair of the National Register of Historic Places committee of the National Barn Alliance and wrote "Rustic Repose, Spring Grove and the Rural Cemetery Movement" for the April-June 2006 issue of TIMELINE.

Barbara Powers, Head of the Inventory and Registration Department in the OHPO, wrote "Louis Bromfield's Big House at Malabar Farm, Form Follows Fiction," a chapter in Recreating the American Past, Essays on the Colonial Revival, edited by Richard Guy Wilson, Shaun Eyring and Kenny Marotta, Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia Press, 2006. She also wrote "Ohio's Pride, The Art and Architecture of the Ohio State Office Building" article for the January-March 2006 issue of TIMELINE. Barbara also serves as member of the Governor's Residence Advisory Board.

Thomas Grooms, Archaeology Transportation Reviews Manager in the OHPO, serves on the Piqua Battlefield Committee in Springfield.

Mark Epstein, head of the OHPO's Resource Protection and Review Department, serves on the Bexley Historical Society's Preservation and Restoration Committee and Decorating and Acquisitions Committee. Mark also serves on the Ohio Department of Development's Downtown Revitalization Program Advisory Committee and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Coastal Management Program's Policies and Programs Coordinating Committee

David Snyder, Archaeology Reviews Manager in the OHPO, represents Ohio as State Archaeologist for the National Association of State Archaeologists. David also conducted research on prehistoric Ohio pottery and at the Society for American Archaeology meeting he presented a poster of results, co-authored with Joni Manson and entitled "Thermal Diffusivity Testing of Sherds from Gartner Mound & Village, Ohio."

Monica Kuhn, Project Reviews Manager in the OHPO, wrote a review of Everyday America: Cultural Landscape Studies After J.B. Jackson for Material Culture, the Pioneer America Society's journal.

Tina Harrah, Administrative Assistant in the OHPO, served as Communications Secretary on the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) Columbus Chapter board of directors.

Tom Wolf, Public Education Manager for the Local History Office, served on the Columbus Historic Resources Commission.

Thank you for your interest in The Ohio Historical Society!

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