I bet that most everyone who reads this article knows that much of the village of Essex is listed on the National Historic Register. However, we do not have the monopoly on historic buildings in the region. In nearby Westport, NY there are a fair amount of older buildings that have also withstood the test of time. Now some citizens in Westport want to add part of the town to the National Historic Register to create their own historic district.
The first step requires the town to apply for a state grant that would bring in an expert to conduct a survey.
Like with other grants, state approval is tied to evidence of support exhibited across a cross-section of the population, from business owners to John Q. Taxpayer. Funding plays a significant role.
The Heritage House National Register Committee, the group spearheading the effort, reached out to stakeholders for donations to show community commitment and reduce the grant amount needed to hire the consultant who comes with a $9,000 price tag (“Westport launches bid for National Historic Registry“)
If this first step is approved it will be followed by public meetings and letters sent out to property owners.
Erin Tobin, the state official from Preserve NY who would help facilitate the survey, said the town is the ultimate arbitrator of possible codes that would come with the designation [if the former village site is added to the Register (exact borders will be decided in the survey process)].
Tobin said inclusion on the National Register is primarily honorary and the grant would allow for the town to hire a consultant to examine buildings in the community to look at historic resources and assess if there could be a historic district, which would open the door to future tax credits designed to offer technical assistance to property owners working to rehabilitate historic buildings. (“Westport launches bid for National Historic Registry“)
There is not full agreement from residents about this initiative. Read the full article here for the complexities of the situation: “Westport launches bid for National Historic Registry.”
- CATS Grand Hike Promotes Region (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- 2014 Westport Challenge Regatta (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Westport Heritage House (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Old Stone Church: It’s Time to Return this Beautiful Building to Prominence (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)
- Essex High School (www.essexonlakechamplain.com)