State Historic Preservation Office
Guidelines for North Carolina's Certified Local Government Program*
II. Definitions/Explanations

The following definitions apply throughout these guidelines:

  1. "Certified local government" (CLG) means any local government certified as meeting the requirements set forth in these guidelines.

  2. "Locally designated historic landmark", "landmark", or "locally designated historic property" refers to an individual building, structure, site, area or object which is studied by a commission and judged to have historical, architectural, archaeological or cultural value. The local government designates a landmark through passage of an ordinance, and the commission then has the power to review and control significant changes to the property. Owners of landmarks are entitled to apply for an annual 50% property tax deferral as long as the property's important historical features are maintained.

    "Locally designated historic district" refers to a type of zoning that applies to entire neighborhoods or other areas that include many properties judged to have historical, architectural, archaeological or cultural value. The zoning provides controls on the appearance of existing and proposed buildings. Unlike landmark designations, local historic district designation has no effect on local property tax liability for property owners within the designated district.

  3. "Local government board" means the legistlative body of a city, county, village, municipalitiy, or any other general purpose political subdivision of the state, such as city council, board of county commissioners, or board of town commissioners.

  4. "Local government" means a city, county, village, municipality, or any other general purpose political subdivision of the state.

  5. "Local legistlation" means a local act of the General Assembly, or an ordinance enacted by a local government pursuant to such a local act or general state enabling legistlation.

  6. "Commission" or "local commission" or "certified local government commission" means the body established by the CLG to carry out its duties as delegated through agreement with the SHPO. This commission must be one of the following:

    • an historic preservation commission: responsible for both locally designated historic districts and landmarks.

    • an historic district commission: responsible for locally designated historic districts.

    • an historic landmarks commission (also called a local historic properties commission): responsible for locally designated historic landmarks (also called historic properties).

    • an historic resources commission: may be responsible for either locally designated historic landmarks or districts, or for both types of designations.

    "Preservation commission" is used throughout the guidelines and is meant to include the types of commissions listed above.

  7. "National Register of Historic Places" (NRHP) means the official national list of properties (districts, buildings, structures, sites, and objects) that possess special significance in terms of history, architecture, culture, or archaeology. The NRHP is maintained by the National Park Service. Properties are nominated to the NRHP by the SHPO in each state.

  8. "National Register Nomination" (NRN) or "nomination" means a document containing the information necessary to nominate a property to the NRHP, including a physical description, statement of significance, maps, photographs, legal description, and geographic data.

  9. "Secretary" means the Secretary of the DOI.

  10. "State Historic Preservation Officer" (SHPO) means the Director of the North Carolina Divisions of Archives and History (DAH) or his/her designee.

  11. "State Historic Preservation Office" (HPO) means the Archaeology and Historic Preservation Section of the DAH. The HPO undertakes the state historic preservation program and serves as staff to the SHPO in regard to his/her preservation responsibilities.

  12. "Survey" means an inventory and prelimary evaluation of the historic properties in a county, town, neighborhood, or some other defined area. Surveys may be conducted of historic properties which have historic and architectural significance, or of properties with historic or pre-historic archaeological significance.
* Reproduced for the City of Washington Department of Planning and Development Website from the January 1992 revision of this document.
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