- email advocacy
Dear [title] [last name],
I am writing to urge you to include funding for the Department of Archaeology & Historic Preservation’s capital grant requests for the Heritage Barn Grant Program, Historic Courthouse Grant Program, Historic Cemetery Grant Program, and Historic Theater Preservation Grant Program.
Preservation of historic places has a proven track record of bolstering our civic, social, and economic systems. Our historic places help anchor our communities through difficult times by reminding us of where we come from and the stories we share. The economic crisis brought on by COVID-19 has threatened these places, along with the businesses and functions that take place within them. These grant programs will not only help preserve these cherished places, they will help get Washingtonians on the road to economic recovery by creating local jobs, mobilizing private investment, and supporting small businesses.
The Heritage Barn Grant Program, Historic County Courthouse Rehabilitation Grant Program, and Historic Cemetery Grant Program are proven programs with strong track records of success—not only assisting with the stabilization and rehabilitation of important historic resources, but also creating jobs, leveraging private investment, and supporting local economies across the state. I urge you to support the following levels of funding for those three programs:
· Heritage Barn Grant Program - $1 million
· Historic County Courthouse Rehabilitation Grant Program - $2.93 million
· Historic Cemetery Grant Program - $515,000
Furthermore, it is essential that a new state capital grant program be created to support historic theaters, upon which the COVID-19 pandemic has had such a devastating impact. These small businesses are a critical part of our state’s arts heritage and culture, serving as local landmarks, meeting places for our communities, and important economic drivers for downtowns. Eighty communities throughout the state have historic theaters, 70% of which are in rural areas, and over half of which are in economically distressed counties. I strongly encourage you to support the creation of this program by including $515,000 in funding to the Historic Theater Capital Grant Program in your proposed capital budget.
Now more than ever, it is time to invest in Washington’s assets, especially those that keep our communities resilient, rooted, and connected. I urge you to activate the power of preservation and include funding for these critical capital grant programs in the upcoming capital budget.
Thank you for your consideration!