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The Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grants Program is a new Historic Preservation Fund grant program created in fiscal year 2018 that supports the rehabilitation of historic properties and fosters economic development of rural communities through subgrants. This program funds physical preservation projects for historic sites, including architectural and engineering services through subgrants to communities determined rural by the US Bureau of the Census.
Eligible properties must be listed in the National Register of Historic Places or determined eligible for listing at the National, State, or local level of significance and located within rural (non-urban) communities with populations less than 50,000. States, Tribes, Certified Local Governments, and non-profits will apply for funding that will in turn be subgranted to rural communities in their jurisdictions.
In September 2019, this grant program was renamed to honor the legacy of long-time Vermont preservationist Paul Bruhn. The program was formerly named the Historic Revitalization Subgrant Program (HRSP).
Grant Projects AnnouncedOn August 27, 2019, the National Park Service announced the inaugural group of recipients of HRSP grants. Funded projects will support revitalization work from Washington to Vermont.
Grant Recipients versus Grant ProjectsUnder this program, eligible grantees (nonprofits, Tribal Historic Preservation Offices, State Historic Preservation Offices, or Certified Local Governments) will receive funds to be subgranted to organizations within their jurisdictions to undertake project work. Applications must come from eligible grantees; these applications will describe the proposed subgrant(s).
"Historic preservation projects have consistently proven to spur economic growth. The goal of this new competitive subgrant program is to support the rehabilitation of historic properties in our nation's rural communities, shine a light on their unique local history, and foster economic development." — P. Daniel Smith, NPS Deputy Director
Eligible Applicants & Subgrant RecipientsThe range of eligible applicants is defined by the National Historic Preservation Act (54 USC 300101) and is limited to:
- Nonprofit US organizations (with or without 501(c)(3) designation)
- Tribal Historic Preservation Offices
- State Historic Preservation Offices
- Certified Local Governments
- properties listed in or determined eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places
- properties located in areas defined as rural by the Bureau of the Census (less than 50,000 people)
- properties within the applicant's jurisdiction
What is FundedThe program funds the rehabilitation of properties listed in or eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places at the National, State, or local level of significance. Projects will include physical preservation at historic sites (including architectural/engineering services). State, Tribes, Certified Local Governments, and non-profits may apply to the NPS for funding to support a subgrant program, that will in turn subgrant to preservation projects in their jurisdictions for architectural/engineering services and physical preservation.
Funding DetailsThe Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grants Program is funded through the Historic Preservation Fund using revenue from Outer Continental Shelf oil lease revenue, not tax dollars.
Approximately $5 million is available for grant funding. We anticipate awarding 7 to 10 grants, ranging between $100,000 to $750,000. Matching funds are not required; however, providing match will be considered in the application scoring process.
How to ApplyApplications are completed and submitted through grants.gov. At this time, we are not accepting applications. When we are, States, Tribes, Certified Local Governments, and non-profits may apply for funding to support a subgrant program. This means that they will administer a program that awards funds to projects within their jurisdictions.
Frequently Asked Questions
For the purposes of the Paul Bruhn Historic Grant Program, the applicant serves as a pass through entity as defined in 2 CFR 200.74. The applicant (SHPO, THPO, CLG, or nonprofit) is the prime recipient and will be required to “pass through” (subgrant) funds to eligible subrecipients and ensure that all parties meet the requirements of 2 CFR 200.331, among other key requirements. The applicant must demonstrate to the NPS in their application that they are capable of fulfilling these requirements.
1. A Statewide nonprofit sees a need to preserve historic theatres in the rural areas of their State.
2. A Statewide nonprofit applies to the NPS for grant funding to preserve historic theaters. The Statewide nonprofit proposes in their application the parameters for their subgrant program, including what type of entities they will award to (nonprofits, local governments, main streets, individuals, etc.), how their projects will be selected, and how they will successfully manage the subgrant program.
3. The NPS awards funding to the Statewide nonprofit, making the Statewide the “prime recipient.”
4. The Statewide nonprofit publicizes its subgrant program and deadline, and then runs a competitive selection process.
5. The Statewide nonprofit then distributes funding in the form of smaller subgrants to selected rural historic theater projects in the State.
If you are interested in the program but not sure about managing subgrants, reach out to other preservation partners that have that experience like SHPOs, THPOs, and CLGs. They may have heard from others that are interested, could apply on your behalf, and subgrant to your organization so you only have one grant to manage.
If you only have one site but need help, contact your SHPO, THPO, CLG, or an eligible nonprofit and ask if they have interest in applying on your behalf; knowing about projects for potential subgrants may help convince an eligible prime recipient to apply.
Funded subgrant projects must comply with the National Historic Preservation Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, the relevant Secretary of the Interior’s Standards, and the Historic Preservation Fund Grants Manual.
a) Non–Federal entities that expend $750,000 or more during a year in Federal awards shall have a single or program–specific audit conducted for that year in accordance with the Single Audit Act Amendments of 1996 (31 U.S.C. 7501–7507) and 2 CFR Part 200, Subpart F.
b) Non–Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 for a fiscal year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, but records must be available for review or audit by appropriate officials of the Federal agency, pass–through entity, and Government Accountability Office (GAO).
We would suggest putting this under "Other" on the budget form. Administrative costs are those involved in the direct management of the grant by you the applicant and the subgrants. This does not include program related costs like monitoring construction, creating easements, and preparing National Register nominations.
We intend to support several projects through the sub-grant program. If several project budgets include roof repair/replacement, should that be listed as one line in the grant budget? If several projects need foundation repairs, should that be listed as one line item in the budget? If not, do we need to provide an itemized budget for each project we intend to support?
Same for consultants fees. List them as "Subgrant architectural services" and "Subgrant easement services" under consultants fees.
For infrastructure, think beyond sewer and roads and consider how this program will help rehabilitate the historic building stock that is the built infrastructure of rural communities. This might include improving life safety, adding accessibility, bringing back a vacant property, etc. Making an investment in a rural community helps restore trust in government by providing support for what that community feels is important to their history. Work to historic resources might help instill trust in the community to return to the downtown, invest in their own properties, and install a sense of community pride. Describe how that trust will be established between you the applicant and the subgrants that will be awarded. Again, these responses are mandatory but should be concise.
No, we cannot fund work that happened before the start of the grant, so the Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grants Program cannot reimburse previous work.
Our requirements are that the subgrantee be within the primary grantee's jurisdiction, in a rural area (population 50,000 or less), and listed in or eligible for listing in the NRHP. You may not subgrant to yourself.
Last updated: January 17, 2020