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Press Release

April 4, 2014

Contact: Melvena Heisch
Oklahoma Historical Society
Office: 405-522-4484

SHPO Seeks Comments on CLG Program Revisions

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. -- The Oklahoma Historical Society, State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) is updating its state procedures for the program and requests comments from local governments, historic preservation professionals and the public on the revisions to procedures for the Certified Local Governments (CLG) program by Monday, June 2, 2014. The SHPO administers the CLG program under the National Historic Preservation Act, as amended (NHPA) [16USC 470 et seq.]. The CLG program assists local governments that adopt and enforce historic preservation ordinances to strengthen their preservation programs.

The NHPA provides for partnerships among federal, tribal, state and local governments to identify, evaluate and protect the buildings, structures, districts, sites, objects and landscapes significant in the nation's history. Since passage of the NHPA, the National Park Service (NPS) and SHPOs have worked together to carry out the national preservation programs. The 1980 amendments to the NHPA formally included local governments in the partnership through the CLG Program. It increases public awareness of a community's valuable archaeological and historic resources, improves management of them, and integrates preservation concerns into local planning processes. Additionally, CLGs have a formal role in the nomination of properties to the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP), receive matching funds from the SHPO's annual Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) allocation from NPS, and may assume other SHPO duties.
Acting on behalf of the Secretary of the Interior, NPS establishes the policies and procedures for this national program, as well as the standards and guidelines that allow SHPOs to develop CLG programs suitable to their respective states. The secretary approved the SHPO's Certified Local Governments Program for Oklahoma (state procedures) in 1985 and its 2000 revision. The state procedures set forth the process for the certification of local governments in Oklahoma, for distribution of the HPF to CLGs, and for the overall administration of the program.

The revised state procedures provide expanded language to better describe the CLG program. Substantive revisions to the training and orientation requirements for the SHPO and CLGs, the process for decertifying CLGs, and the process for allocating the HPF to CLGs are presented in the draft. No changes to the eligibility requirements or to the minimum requirements for local ordinances are proposed. The draft revised state procedures and the current version are available at http://www.okhistory.org/shpo/clg.htm, and both documents can be requested from the SHPO in hard copy at 405-521-6249 or bharris@okhistory.org.

The SHPO invites written comments (email preferred) by 5 p.m., Monday, June 2, 2014. Submit them to Melvena Heisch, Deputy SHPO at mheisch@okhistory.org or by mail to the State Historic Preservation Office, 800 Nazih Zuhdi Dr., Oklahoma City, OK 73105-7917.

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