updated 11 August 04'
The purpose of this section is to provide information and boilerplate language that will help to provide a basic understanding of the issue by factually describing the issue, its scope, and dimensions.
Each county in the State of Utah is blessed with a concentration of historic and archaeological resources. These resources are located in towns, cities, and main streets, as individual sites or grouped in historic districts. Others are scattered throughout counties in the form of rock art, archaeological structures, archaeological sites of scientific importance, and historic landscapes or settings.
As we know from experience, any great community (or county) is enhanced by looking to its future and new development but also by keeping a steady hand on its past. History can become an enhancer for our quality of life and a stimulator for economic development. Businesses in some industries often look for historic settings in historic buildings in order to provide character, the sense of stability, and a unique marketing angle for their products and services.
This requires a balance and a careful planning approach. All too often, we find ourselves in a situation where we tear down the old in the name of progress, only to realize too late that the old could have been a better economic stimulus than the new. Or we find ourselves so encumbered by the past and that new is not entertained. If we create a balance and dialogue between old and new, we can take advantage of the benefits of both. The new can be given broader character by referring to heritage and tradition, while the old can be reinvigorated by new development.
Utah Code 9-8-401 states, “The Legislature determines and declares that the public has a vital interest in all antiquities, historic and prehistoric ruins, and historic sites, buildings, and objects which, when neglected, desecrated, destroyed or diminished in aesthetic value, result in an irreplaceable loss to the people of this state.”Because of the importance of historic resources, the Legislature has established economic incentives for their preservation and re-use. The State of Utah , through Utah Code Annotated 59-7-609, has implemented a tax credit for the rehabilitation expenditures associated with qualifying residential historic buildings. Further, the United States Tax Code has provided a similar investment tax credit for the rehabilitation of historic commercial and residential rental properties.
Options & Trade-Offs
Does the historic resource add to the quality of life of the county?
Are these historic sites, settings and landscapes an important factor in your quality of life and why people want to live/move here?
Are there ways to include new with old, where the new is compatible and yet functional?
Does the old prevent us from needed new development, or can new development and old development exist together with creative design?
Do the historic resources and archaeological sites add value to an economic development plan?
Potential for Conflict
Energy development may need to be designed in a way that considers the past and archaeology in particular. The coexistence of archaeology and energy development can create conflicts, which with advanced planning can be minimized or removed.New business development needs resources and careful planning in order to keep as much of the old as possible when it has been determined it is important, so that old and new complement each other .
Range of Alternatives
The full range of choices should be examined w ith respect to hi storic and archaeological resources because they are finite and can be lost without careful planning. A community (or county) needs to explore all options for keeping and enhancing its historic and archaeological heritage while providing for growth and new development . Options may include locating new development in areas without significant resources, or designing new projects so that historic resources are maintained and enhanced. National Register resources do not limit property right or development options, but should be taken into account because of the historic value they add to a community.
The purpose of this section is to provide information and boilerplate language that will help to describe the existing condition.
Counties can find much information on their resources in the databases of the Division of State History. Hundreds of surveys of archaeological and historic sites have been conducted throughout the state, and the information is available on these databases, which include sites currently listed on or eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.
Items to Consider
As county leaders define their county's current condition, they should ask themselves:
Communities need to have a careful understanding of the economic opportunities inherent in their cultural and historic resources, in commercial areas, historic neighborhoods, archaeological sites, and historic landscapes.
Statements like these might be made in the resource management plan:
The county knows a great deal concerning the presence of historic and archaeological resources, but certa in areas need to be surveyed and considered.
The county is in need of professional assistance to help them identify the potential of their historic and archaeological sites, districts, and landscapes.
The purpose of this section is to provide information and boilerplate language that will help to describe the improvements and changes that need to be made to the existing condition in order to achieve the desired future condition. It also provides the basis for the development of policy statements that support the desired future condition.
Range of Alternatives
If a county is focusing on a balanced approach between old and new, the desired future condition might be to conduct a full inventory, using best available practices and within budget restraints, of the cultural and historic sites and landscapes within the county and develop a plan to encourage the preservation and use of these resources as part of an effort to use heritage as an economic and quality of life tool.
History can add to the quality of life of our community, but we need to take the following items under consideration:
The purpose of this section is to provide boilerplate policy statement language that will support the desired future conditions. A range of possible conditions is provided here.
It is a policy of the State of Utah to encourage the preservation of cultural and historic sites and landscapes as part of developing a vibrant quality of life and economic development future for the state. The state uses economic incentives, tax credits, grants, and technical assistance to encourage preservation . In accordance with 9-8-502, “The Legislature finds and declares that preservation and restoration of historically significant real property and structures as identified by the State Register of Historic Sites are in the public interest of the people of the state of Utah and should be promoted by the laws of this state.”
Local policies that have helped to protect and preserve historic resources :
The purpose of this section is to provide boilerplate examples of the types of improvements or changes that typically would be needed to reach the desired future condition. “Goal” is the desired condition. “Objectives” are improvements or changes that need to be made to reach the goal. “Action Items” are specific actions that can be taken in order to achieve the objective.
The county should ensure that its master plan includes the historic and cultural sites and landscapes within its boundaries, so that these resources are identified for planning consideration. The county may consider laws, legislation or ordinance changes to provide for the protection and/or orderly development or encourage careful consideration prior to new development.
Policies used effectively in other locations include:
The purpose of this section is to provide suggested techniques and methods for monitoring progress towards the desired condition.
Monitoring methods that could be used include:
These incentives could be compared to other economic development initiatives to determine their success or failure. In evaluating the economic benefits of preservation, counties should keep in mind that the rehabilitation of historic buildings uses more local labor and materials then new construction does.
The State of Colorado published a report in 2002 on the economic benefits of historic preservation in Colorado . Other states, such as North Carolina and Virginia have conducted similar studies.
This section is intended to be a reference guide to help locate any sources of assistance.
The Division of State History staff is happy to provide assistance. A staff directory can be found on the division's web site at http://history.utah.gov/contactabout/staff.html
The Antiquities Section of the Utah Division of State History was created by the legislature to be the "authority of the state for the protection and orderly development of archaeological and anthropological resources." http://history.utah.gov/archaeology/archaeology.html
The Utah Division of State History's Historic Preservation web site provides valuable information on the National Register of Historic Places (the nation's official list of cultural resources worthy of preservation) architectural surveys, the Local Certified Government program, tax credits for historic building rehabilitation (federal and state), a database of Utah architecture, architectural/technical assistance to historic building owners, and preservation education http://history.utah.gov/historicpreservation/historicpreservation.html
The Utah Heritage Tourism Toolkit is a package of practical tools that communities or groups can use to develop, manage, and protect their heritage resources. You can also find available funding sources for your project through creative funding solutions. http://history.utah.gov/httoolkit/
The Cultural Heritage Tourism Resource web site functions as a gateway to information about existing programs, opportunities and technical assistance within state government that relate to cultural heritage tourism. http://culturalheritage.utah.gov/
The Division of State History Research Library and Collections program stimulates and facilitates research in Utah history. It maintains a specialized research library. It creates exhibits and provides access to historical artifacts, documentary materials, and other objects relating to the history of Utah . http://history.utah.gov/library/library.html
Utah Encyclopedia is a resource about the "individuals, organizations, locations, institutions, and topics important to Utah history." The first complete history of Utah in encyclopedia form, this volume consists of 575 articles and more than 200 historic photographs http://www.media.utah.edu/UHE/
Utah Historical Quarterly is filled with articles, memoirs, annotated primary sources, book reviews, and photos. http://history.utah.gov/historyprograms/puuhq.html . An index to the Utah Centennial County History Series (published jointly by the Utah State Historical Society and the respective counties) is also listed.
Federal and state income tax credits assist in preserving historic resources. Federal income tax credits provide a 20 percent investment tax credit for eligible commercial and residential income properties. http://history.utah.gov/historicpreservation/fedtaxcredits.html
The Utah historic preservation tax credit provides a 20 percent investment tax credit for qualified work done on eligible residential and residential rental properties http://history.utah.gov/historicpreservation/utahtaxcredit.html