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Covington, Newport Projects Win Grant Funding

Four projects in Covington and Newport are among ten statewide recently awarded Kentucky Certified Local Government (CLG) program grants, the Kentucky Heritage Council announced Monday.

Two of the grants will aid Covington and Newport in producing Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend, an annual symposium on preservation and home restoration, and two additional grants will assist Covington in its new effort to host a trades training programming.

Eight participating communities shared grants totaling $98,731 for the current fiscal year

The CLG program is administered by the Kentucky Heritage Council/State Historic Preservation Office (KHC), with grant funds allocated annually by the National Park Service to participating communities.

“Current grant awards include multiple historic resource surveys identifying historically under-represented neighborhoods of African American heritage, stakeholder education projects for local historic districts, tax credit workshops for property owners, professional training for local review boards, and hands-on skills training opportunities including cemetery restoration and plaster repair workshops,” said Dr. Orloff Miller, KHC’s CLG Program and Planning Coordinator.

“This can’t be done by a lone staff member or concerned citizen’s group; this is a statewide, long-term commitment implemented through the CLG program,” he said.

Proposed projects were approved in July by the Kentucky Heritage Council. Activities must directly support goals outlined in Kentucky’s state historic preservation plan, and those charged with training and implementing projects must adhere to the federal Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the treatment of historic properties.

CLG designation offers a way for local governments to develop a comprehensive approach to historic preservation and promote the integration of preservation interests into the planning process. City and county-wide historic preservation commissions must become designated to qualify for the grants, made available through a federal Historic Preservation Fund pass-through to state historic preservation offices to assist their work in recognizing, protecting and saving historic places.

Local recipients:

Covington – Economic Analysis of the Restoration Trades Industry in Covington ($15,242 federal, $10,161 local match), to complete an economic analysis of the Northern Kentucky (NKY) restoration trades industry and quantitatively establish the need for restoration skills training in Covington, the NKY region and nationally. The study will evaluate the availability of qualified practitioners in various disciplines and community needs that could be addressed by the establishment of a restoration trades school. This project will demonstrate how a trades training program could support local preservation efforts and economic development and will include measuring long-term success to help other cities to establish similar programs.

Covington – Trades Training Program and Curriculum Development ($23,162 federal, $15,441 local match), to retain a consultant to work directly with city staff and community volunteers to explore establishing a restoration trades program in Northern Kentucky. The consultant will identify local skilled tradespeople interested in teaching, organize instructor training, and survey equipment potentially available including through a partnership with the NKY Building Industry Association. Goals will also include assessing potential properties for hands-on training and establishing a skills lab at a historic home owned by the city. The project will also educate stakeholders on best practices for sustainable funding, program administration, and marketing the program to potential students.

Covington – Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend ($5,500 federal, $3,800 local match), to partner with Newport and other Northern Kentucky communities to produce the 11th Annual Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend (NKYRW). This free, multi-day educational event features a variety of sessions on topics of interest to historic property owners and preservation professionals. Programming and classes offered during this event are determined by an event planning group that consists of representatives of NKY CLG communities as well as local contractors, vendors, service providers, and product distributers. The project will result in at least two days of professional development workshops offering educational credits.

Newport – Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend ($3,000 federal, $2,000 local match), to implement the 11th Annual Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend (NKYRW) in partnership with the city of Covington. This funding will offset costs for a keynote speaker, event programs, advertising posters and postcards for mailing, tablecloths and tables, and a meal at the AIA/AICP workshop. In partnership with other Northern Kentucky CLGs, Newport annually sponsors NKYRW as a free, multi-day educational event open to the public with classes, demonstrations and exhibits about various topics relating to historic preservation as well as workshops geared to preservation professionals.

-Staff report