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Springville to apply for historic registry

SPRINGVILLE — The Springville village board of trustees discovered it can skip a step in applying for inclusion of residential properties on the National Register of Historic Places, at its Feb. 3 meeting. According to Mayor William Krebs, the village had retained Alma and Clinton Brown, of Clinton Brown Company Architecture, PC, to write a grant for a windshield survey, to discern which properties within the village would be eligible for inclusion on the register.

This survey was intended to follow up on a report from 1988 that delineated the eligible areas in Springville. That survey would have delayed the application for a year, while it was conducted. The architects spoke with Krebs and said they did not think it was necessary and that the village could “take action faster.

“[That report] had enough background that we didn’t need it updated, in order to submit nominations for possible inclusion on the national registry,” Krebs explained.

Brown also suggested the village submit the East Hill district for inclusion on the register. That residential district includes an area from East Main Street at Elk Street, to Myrtle and Prospect avenues. A survey of that area would cost approximately $15,000, an estimate that came after a conversation with Certified Local Government and the State Historic Preservation Office staff, who requested the proposal to nominate that area.

Inclusion on the national register would qualify property owners for both state and federal tax credits, providing those owners comply with the specifications set by the historic register.

“These are incentives that can filter down to the residents,” Krebs said, of nominating that area for inclusion.

Trustee Nils Wikman supported the idea, saying “It’s our duty to tell anyone who’s looking at [these properties] of the historic register, so they can take advantage of it.”

Trustee Alan Chamberlin asked if the village could get additional tax incentives or funding from inclusion on the register. Krebs did not have that information, but said that inclusion “certainly can’t hurt.

“Generally speaking, anything that contributes to Smart Growth, such as these initiatives [and] doing everything we can to make sure the village maintains its aesthetic, is a good thing,” he added.

The board approved submitting the nomination.

Code Enforcement Officer Mike Kaleta reminded residents that political signs may not be erected until Feb. 25 and must be removed three days after the election.

Superintendent Karl Lux requested that two employees from the electric division be approved to attend the annual Municipal Electric Utilities Association’s Engineering Workshop, taking place in East Syracuse, N.Y. on March 19-20. He said that the employees have not been selected, but that the cost would be $80 per attendee, plus $310 per person for lodging and transportation. Approval of those costs would leave $21,165 in the account from which those funds would be taken. The board approved the request.

Police Chief John Fox reported that the department responded to 1,226 total calls in 2013 and issued 522 traffic tickets. Both of those numbers are down from last year.

“Those numbers show me that the department is doing a good job of keeping our village safe, and that drivers are obeying traffic laws and not getting stopped for violations, in the village,” Fox said.

Krebs said that he is still waiting on details about the Smart Growth fund grant that was awarded to the village, although he reiterated that receiving the aid was “great news” for Spri™ngville.

The next Springville Board of Trustees meeting will take place at the municipal building, located at 65 Franklin St., at 7 p.m. on Feb. 18. The meeting will take place on a Tuesday, because of the Monday holiday.

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