Pennsylvania Historic Preservation

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PA SHPO COVID-19 Update

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Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission (PHMC) offices throughout the commonwealth are closed.  

PA SHPO and PHMC staff continue to work remotely and will respond to inquiries received via voicemail and email.

Please read the information below to understand how PA SHPO is responding to the COVID-19 outbreak:

Community Preservation:
Our Community Preservation Coordinators remain available via phone or email to answer all your technical preservation questions.  We are aware that current restrictions are making it difficult to move forward with public meetings that may be necessary for work on grants and other projects.  We will update you as we can on how we will be addressing those issues.

CRGIS:
All data entry and updating is progressing normally and we are available to answer questions via phone or email. Mapping may be a bit delayed.

Education & Outreach:
PA SHPO blog and newsletters will be maintained on schedule and PHMC website will be updated as needed.

Environmental Review:
The Environmental Review staff will continue to respond to your inquiries via phone and email. Staff are no longer making site visits but are available to attend meetings and consultations via conference call.

New Projects: Requests to initiate review of new projects continue to be accepted through the mail. We are working to put procedures in place to accept new projects via email and will notify you when that option is available.

Existing Projects: Continued consultation on existing projects should be provided to the appropriate reviewer via an email. Please include the Environmental Review (ER) number and provide attachments in pdf format, no larger than 10 MBs in size.

Contact information for the reviewers is available on our website: https://www.phmc.pa.gov/Preservation/Environmental-Review/Pages/Contact-Information.aspx.  

Grants:
PHMC Grants staff is available by phone and email for grant related issues. Telework status is operational but there are limitations.

For Keystone grants: applications submitted at March 2, 2020 deadline are under review by Grant Review Panels. PHMC Grants staff sent a program status notification to all active grantees on March 17, 2020. We plan to hold panel meetings in late April/early May and submit funding recommendations for Commission approval at June meeting (as currently scheduled). Grant interim reports and invoices can be submitted and processed. Please contact Keystone Grant Manager Karen Arnold for assistance.

For Support Grants: grant award letters were sent to Grantees on March 4, 2020. PHMC sent a program status notification to all active grantees on March 16, 2020. We are mobilizing to start grant contract distribution over the next two weeks. If systems are operational, PHMC Grants staff can administer this by telework operations. Please contact Scott Doyle for assistance.

Historical Markers:
PHMC Marker staff is available by phone and email for marker related issues related to nomination process, program guidelines, research, dedication events and maintenance. Telework status is operational but there are limitations. Please note that marker dedication events are probably cancelled due limitations on public gatherings and we are evaluating if maintenance contractor can provide services under Governor’s “life-sustaining” business order. Please contact Marker Program Coordinator Karen Galle for assistance.

National Register:
The PA SHPO National Register staff is available via phone or email as we telework.  We are continuing to review requests for determinations of eligibility and draft National Register nominations.  The National Park Service is also teleworking, and has asked SHPOs to hold off on sending final nominations to them at this time. 

You can submit materials to us electronically.  Please contact Elizabeth Rairigh at erairigh@pa.gov to get a link to a One Drive folder where you can upload your submission.  Please be aware that there will be a delay if you mail in a hard copy, as our staff has limited capability to go to the office and scan materials.  At this time we are also working on contingency plans for our June Board meeting, but no decisions have been made.

Tax Credits:
PHMC Historic Tax Credit staff is available by phone and email for tax credit related issues. Telework status is operational but there are limitations.

For Federal HTCs: Staff is reviewing federal applications and working on a mail delivery protocol for once-a-week mail service to both receive new applications and send applications to National Park Service. Please note there will be delays due to the both PA SHPO and NPS staff working in remote locations and the need to transfer paper files and photographs with limitations of a once-a-week mail service. Please continue to submit new applications and contact Scott Doyle or Shawn Massey for assistance.

For State HTCs: PHMC can accept Part 3 applications for completed projects and forward reviews to DCED. There is no status update on FY 2019 applications or if DCED and Revenue are processing Tax Credit certificates. Please contact Scott Doyle for assistance

Staff contact information is available on the PHMC website at:

https://www.phmc.pa.gov/Preservation/About/Pages/Staff-Directory.aspx

Coronavirus Information
Learn more about the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and connect with resources for Pennsylvanians.

Author: Shelby Weaver Splain

Shelby Weaver Splain is the Education and Outreach Coordinator for the Pennsylvania State Historic Preservation Office. Shelby is a native of Bucks County and holds a Masters degree in Historic Preservation Planning from Cornell University and a Bachelor of Arts with Honors in Historic Preservation from Goucher College.

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