Arizona Preservation Foundation Issues State Public Policy Recommendations

Source:  Arizona Preservation Foundation Blog Post – January 5, 2023

Arizona Preservation Foundation Board of Directors conveyed the following preservation related recommendations for consideration of the incoming Hobbs Administration. Historic preservation and the sustainable adaptive reuse of historic resources enhances real estate values and fosters local businesses, keeping historic main streets and downtowns economically viable. Heritage tourism is a real economic force, one that is evident in places that have preserved their historic character.

STATEWIDE

Support full funding for the State Parks Heritage Fund through the Arizona Lottery. While general appropriations and ARPA funds have supported the State Parks Heritage Fund for the past two fiscal years, restoring its original source of funding (as the Game & Fish Heritage Fund continues to be funded) would provide a consistent, steady financial stream to meet the great demand for improvements to our parks, historic sites, trails, and environmental education.

Support enactment of a state historic tax credit, complementing the federal historic tax credit, to encourage private investment in the reuse of historic buildings, promote investment in local economies, and increase the amount of federal investment in rehabilitation. Arizona is one of 12 states and territories without such a state historic tax credit.

Identify and codify in statute a sustainable funding source for the important work of the Arizona State Historic Preservation Office

Prioritize the adaptive reuse of buildings (historic and non-historic) in competitive Low Income Housing Tax Credit (LIHTC) awards and other affordable housing incentives

REGIONAL

Support the designation of U.S. Route 80 as a Historic Arizona Road. In 2018 the historic alignment of Route 80 was designated by the Arizona State Transportation Board unanimously. Preservation advocates have worked to secure formal support from the numerous municipalities and counties along the route. A “boost” from elected state officials would be greatly appreciated.

Re-establish the Arizona Main Street Program. Every community and commercial district is different, with its own distinctive assets and sense of place. The Main Street approach offers community-based revitalization initiatives with a practical, adaptable framework for transformation that is easily tailored to local conditions.

Remove the last remaining Confederate memorial on public property at the Southern Arizona Veterans’ Memorial Cemetery in Sierra Vista

CAPITAL CITY (PHOENIX)

Fund the rehabilitation of historic buildings and structures at the Arizona State Fairgrounds, including the 1938 WPA Administration Building, and consider other recommendations outlined in the Arizona Exposition & State Fair Charrette, March 8-11, 2018

Develop a plan for the use and activation of vacant and underutilized buildings in the Capitol Mall complex, including the 1893 Evans House, 1908 Carnegie Library, 1921 El Zaribah Shrine Auditorium/Polly Rosenbaum Building, and 1930 Agriculture Building

Develop a plan for the rehabilitation and use of historic buildings at the Arizona State Hospital, including the 1911 Mahoney Building and 1963 Chapel

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions about the Foundation’s public policy recommendations, please feel free to send us a note.

2022/2023 Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund Grant Awardees

On June 30, 2022 Arizona Governor Doug Ducey signed the state budget for Fiscal Year 2023, including $2.5 million to fund the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund. Through a matching grant process developed by the Arizona State Parks Board in consultation with staff of Arizona State Parks & Trails and the State Historic Preservation Office the monies in the State Parks Heritage Fund have been (and continue to be) allocated as follows: 50% ($1.25 million) on local, regional, and state parks for outdoor recreation and open space development, restoration, or renovation; 30% ($750,000) on local, regional, and state historic preservation projects; 10% ($250,000) on local, regional, and state non-motorized trails; and 10% ($250,000) on outdoor/environmental education.

Over the last couple months, the Arizona State Parks Board has approved a number of Heritage Grants grants for projects in the four categories. Click here to downloand the current listing (as of 1.3.2023) of the 2022/2023 State Parks Heritage Fund Awardees.

 

Restore Full Funding for the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund in 2023!

Arizona’s local, regional, and state parks and recreation facilities are economic development generators that encourage the spending of tourist dollars, attract businesses whose workforce choose jobs in locations with quality of life benefits, strengthen community cohesion, and increase property values. Historic preservation initiatives in our rural communities and urban areas promote economic development by creating jobs, revitalizing historic areas, increasing property values, and promoting heritage tourism.

The Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund served Arizona well from 1991 to 2008 and again, starting in 2021, with its support for parks, historic preservation, non-motorized trails, and outdoor and environmental education. It is the goal of the Arizona Heritage Alliance to encourage state officials to restore full funding for the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund in 2023. During the fiscal year 2021 and 2022 grant cycles, the demand has exceeded expectations, so full funding is essential.

Help us achieve our goal!

* CHICK HERE  to add your name to the list of Arizonans who care deeply about our state’s natural, cultural, and historic resources and encourage full funding for the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund through its original funding source, the Arizona Lottery.

* CONTACT your newly-elected legislators asking them to support the Arizona State Parks Heritage Fund in the next legislative session. Since the election results are still coming in (as of 11-13-22), contact information for new legislators has yet to be finalized. To find your legislator, visit: https://www.azleg.gov/findmylegislator/

* FOLLOW the Alliance’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/azheritage

* INVITE the Alliance to make a presentation at an organization you represent. Drop us a note at mail@azheritage.org 

With graditude, thank you for your continuing support.

Arizona Heritage Alliance Board of Directors