Heritage Newsletter

August 2015

Monthly news update from the Office of History and Archaeology
State of Alaska, Department of Natural Resources

          Federal legislation and funding for historic preservation programs
          Alaska Historical Commission Updates
          Alaska Historic Preservation Conference October 20-22
          2015 Endangered Historic Properties List to be announced August 6
          Advisory Council on Historic Preservation upcoming webinars
          National Historic Preservation Act turns 50
          Oscar Anderson House in Anchorage open this summer
          Public project alerts
          Heritage subscription information
          Preservation calendar

Federal legislation and funding for historic preservation programs

Congressional authorization for the Historic Preservation Fund expires September 30, 2015. Created by Congress in 1966, the HPF provides funding to State Historic Preservation Offices, Tribal Historic Preservation Offices and Certified Local Governments to carry out the federal historic preservation programs. The HPF is funded from outer continental shelf leases not taxpayer dollars. The National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers and its preservation partners are asking for permanent reauthorization of the HPF and full funding at $150 million a year (the current appropriation is $56.4 million, less than half that amount).

Representatives Michael Turner (R-OH) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) introduced the National Historic Preservation Amendment Act of 2015 (H.R. 2817) to reauthorize the HPF. The bill would extend the HPF for 10 years, through 2025, at the current authorized level of $150 million annually. Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) introduced the Energy Policy Modernization Act, a comprehensive energy package that includes permanent authorization for the Historic Preservation Fund, the Land and Water Conservation Fund, and creates a $150 million annual National Park Service maintenance fund. The money for all of these programs would be from outer continental shelf leases. The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee approved the bill last week.

It is important to let Alaska’s congressional delegation know of the importance of historic preservation programs and the need for full funding of the Historic Preservation Fund to preserve and protect Alaska’s historic properties.

President Obama’s proposed budget for FY 16 (October 1, 2015-September 30, 2016) has $89.1 million for the Historic Preservation Fund, a significant increase over the FY 15 appropriation of $56.4 million. The budget proposes $46.9 million for state programs (same as FY 15), $10 million for tribal programs ($1 million increase), $500,000 for the underrepresented grant program (same as FY 15), and two new programs: $30.5 million for a grant program related to the civil rights movement, and $2.5 million for historically Black colleges & universities to preserve civil rights movement resources. The administration’s proposed budget reduces funding for National Heritage Areas, funded under the Recreation and Preservation Account, by fifty percent to $10.0 million.

The House Interior Appropriations Committee made its FY 16 budget recommendations. The recommendations are $60.91 million for Historic Preservation Fund programs--$48.925 million for SHPOs, $8.985 million for THPOs, and $500 thousand for underrepresented grants, all the same as last year. The committee added $4.5 million for civil rights grants. For other preservation programs, the committee recommended $19.671 for National Heritage Areas, and $6.08 million for the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation.

The Senate Interior Appropriates Committee made its FY 16 budget recommendations as well. The committee recommended $55.91 million for SHPOs and THPOs (same as FY 15 enacted levels), $500 thousand for underrepresented grants, and $5 million for civil rights movement grants. The committee recommended level funding for the National Heritage Areas at $20.321 million, a little more than the House proposal, and level funding for the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation at just over $6 million.

The House passed the National Defense Authorization Act with Section 2853 that allows heads of federal agencies to block or revoke National Register nominations for reasons of national security and calls for the National Park Service to create an expedited de-listing process. The Senate Armed Services subcommittee did not include the section in its mark-up of its companion NDAA bill that has been sent to the full committee to act on and send to the full Senate for a vote. The Administration’s Statement of Administrative Policy (SAP) on the bill objects to the provision.

The Senate passed a road, rail and transit funding bill, HR 22, referred to as the DRIVE Act, last week. The bill has a section disturbing to historic preservationists, Section 11116 that would eliminate Section 4(f) and essentially replace it with Section 106. Stephanie Meeks, President of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, wrote an editorial in The Hill urging retention of the existing Section 4(f) program: http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/249489-the-drive-act-throws-history-out-the-window.

Alaska Historical Commission Updates

As part of his duties Lt. Governor Byron Mallott serves as chair of the Alaska Historical Commission. The Alaska Historical Society and Museums Alaska invited him to attend their annual meetings and conference to be held at Cordova in late September. He has accepted the invitation, and will be giving a talk Friday, October 2nd to those attending. Under his leadership, the Alaska Historical Commission has been discussing how to involve all Alaskans in commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Alaska purchase in 2017. Ideas are being sought and the commemoration will be addressed at /the next meeting of the Alaska Historical Commission, scheduled for December 8, 2015 in Anchorage. Detailed information on the Alaska Historical Society and Museums Alaska meetings is available at www.cordova2015.org.

Governor Walker reappointed Candy Waugaman of Fairbanks to a three year term on the Alaska Historical Commission in July. To write that Candy knows Alaska history and is an avid collector of Alaskana is an understatement!

Alaska Historic Preservation Conference October 20-22

The Office of History and Archaeology is hosting an Alaska Historic Preservation Conference in Anchorage, October 20-22, 2015. Donovan Rypkema, a recognized leader in the economics of historic preservation, will give a keynote address Tuesday the 20th and elaborate on his comments in sessions on Wednesday the 21st. Since 1983, Rypkema has consulted with public and non-profit sector clients on downtown and neighborhood commercial district revitalization and reuse of historic structures. In 2012 the National Trust for Historic Preservation awarded him its Louise du Pont Crowninshield Award.

The conference is for local government planning staff, historic preservation commissions, elected officials, planning commissions, and historic preservation practitioners. The second day will address local historic preservation programs. A local government specialist from the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development will address commission procedures, and other conference sessions will include presentations about Alaska’s local government preservation programs, preservation incentives, and heritage tourism.

An agenda is available at http://dnr.alaska.gov/parks/oha/misc/ahpconfagenda2015.pdf. Registration information will be available by August 15. For more information about the conference contact Summer Rickman (907.269.8717 / summer.rickman@alaska.gov).

2015 endangered historic properties list to be announced August 6

The Alaska Association for Historic Preservation will announce its Ten Most Endangered Historic Properties for 2015 on August 6th in Anchorage. The annual list calls attention to significant but threatened historic properties around the state. The list has successfully garnered support for conservation of Alaska’s historic properties, which are assets for tourism, economic development, education, and the cultural heritage of Alaska. AAHP has identified its Most Endangered Historic Properties annually since 1991. The list will be announced at a reception Thursday, August 6th, 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Oscar Anderson House Museum, 420 M Street. Please RSVP by e-mail: akpreservation@gmail.com or phone: 907-929-9870.

Advisory Council on Historic Preservation upcoming webinars

The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation has a new webinar, Cultural Landscapes: Identification and Effects Assessment, and will be offering it August 12 and again on August 19, 2015. The course addresses natural and man-made features that should be considered when reviewing federal projects for their impacts to cultural resources. Also, the council has scheduled its Defining the Area of Potential Effects webinar for September 22; to repeat on September 30, 2015. Additional information about the webinar series, the two courses, and to register is available at www.achp.gov/sec106webinar.html.

Oscar Anderson House in Anchorage open this summer

Historic preservationists have started Preservation50: Our Legacy, Our Future, a nationwide group to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of passage of the National Historic Preservation Act in 2016. The mission is to honor and raise awareness of the public value of historic preservation and to unify, diversify, and grow the preservation community to continue it for the next fifty years. Partners and collaborators include private sector leaders in preservation, public agencies, and national, tribal, state, and local preservation organizations. To join the planning discussion, take a national survey, find and publicize events, download the six Preservation50 logos, and get other tools, go to www.preservation50.org.

The Society for American Archaeology, the Society for Historic Archaeology, the Archaeology Channel, and the organization of registered professional archaeologists are planning to to produce an interactive map supplemented by short videos as a 50th anniversary project. Burr Neely, Northern Land Use Research, is the Alaska coordinator for the Making Archaeology Public (MAP) project and is working with the Alaska Anthropological Association’s Public Education Group, Jenny Blanchard, Chair. To suggest sites to include, volunteer to provide content, or to get more information contact 907.474.9684 / bjn@northernlanduse.com.

Oscar Anderson House in Anchorage open this summer

The Oscar Anderson House Museum, at the west end of downtown Anchorage, is open this summer for guided tours daily except Monday. The hours are 12:00-4:00 p.m. 2015 is Anchorage’s centennial, and visiting the house—one of few properties from the city’s earliest years—should be on your list of activities this summer if you are visiting Anchorage or if you are entertaining friends and family.


Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities / Sterling Highway MP 45-60 Project (Quartz Creek Road to Skilak Lake Road in the Cooper Landing area), draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement and draft Section 4(f) Evaluation

Project information www.sterlinghighway.net

Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities / West Susitna Surface Access Reconnaissance Study

Project information: http://dot.alaska.gov/roadstoresources/westsusitna/index.shtml

Bureau of Land Management Bering Sea – Western Interior Resource Management Plan

Project information: www.blm.gov/ak/planning/bswi
Contact: 907.267.1246 / 800.478.1263

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission / Alaska Energy Authority, Susitna-Watana Hydroelectric Project

Project information: www.susitna-watanahydro.org/.

U.S. Forest Service / Chugach National Forest Plan

Plan revision: fs.usda.gov/chugach / Land and Resource Management
Comments: chugachplanrevision@fs.fed.us.

U.S. Forest Service / Tongass National Forest Sustainable Cabin Management Project

Environmental Assessment: http://go.usa.gov/WQEk
Contact: Victoria Houser, 907.826.1614 / vhouser@fs.fed.us.

Heritage Subscription Information

Heritage is produced by the Office of History and Archaeology, Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation, Alaska Department of Natural Resources.  Please send your comments, suggestions, and information via e-mail to jo.antonson@alaska.gov, mail to 550 West 7th Ave., Suite 1310, Anchorage, Alaska 99501-3565, or telephone 907.276.8721.

All issues are posted to our web site at dnr.alaska.gov/parks/oha and distributed to subscribers by e-mail.  A paper copy can be sent to individuals and organizations that specifically request it.

To be added to the subscription list, please send an e-mail to oha@alaska.net with “Heritage, subscribe” in the subject line.

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Preservation Calendar


  • August 12 (same course August 19) Advisory Council on Historic Preservation webinar: Cultural Landscapes: Identification and Effects Assessment (webinar@achp.gov)


  • September 10-12 Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, & Museums, 2015 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums, Washington, DC (ATALM, www.atalm.org)

  • September 14 National Park Service, Shared Beringian Heritage Program project proposal deadline (Katerina Wessels, 907.644.3602 / katerina_wessels@nps.gov)

  • September 16-20 - American Association for State and Local History, annual meeting: The Power of Possibility, Louisville, KY (Bob Beatty, 635.320.3203 / beatty@aaslh.org

  • September 22 (same course September 30) Advisory Council on Historic Preservation webinar: Defining the Area of Potential Effects (webinar@achp.gov)

  • September 30 - October 3 - Alaska Historical Society / Museums Alaska annual meetings, Cordova (www.alaskahistoricalsociety.org)


  • October 14-15 National Park Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Wisconsin State Historic Preservation Office, Maritime Cultural Landscape Symposium, Madison, WI (Daina Penkiunas, 608.264.6511 / daina.penkiunas@wisconsinhistory.org, http://wihist.org/maritime-symposium)

  • October 20-22 Office of History and Archaeology: Historic Preservation Conference and Certified Local Government training, Anchorage (Summer Rickman, 907.269.8717 / summer.rickman@alaska.gov)

  • October 20-21 CyArk 2015 summit: Resilience through Innovation, Berlin, Germany (Makenna Murray, 510.832.5440 / www.CyArk.org)

  • October 28-November 1 Wooshteen Kanaxtulaneegí Haa At Wuskóowu / Sharing Our Knowledge: Haa saaxú, haa latseení / Our Names, Our Strength; A Conference of Tlingit Tribes and Clans, Juneau (clanconference@gmail.com / clanconference.org)


  • November 2-5 Urban Archaeology of Vienna: 20th International Conference on Cultural Heritage and New Technologies, Vienna, Austria (Wolfgang Borner, 43.01.4000.81176 / wolfgang.boerner@stadarchaeologie.at )

  • November 3-6 National Trust for Historic Preservation: PastForward 2015, Washington, DC (NTHP, 202-588.6100 / conference@savingplaces.org)


  • December 8 Alaska Historical Commission meeting, Anchorage (Jo Antonson, 907.269.8714 / jo.antonson@alaska.gov)



  • February 2 National Preservation Institute: NAGPRA Essentials, Anchorage (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)

  • February 3-4 National Preservation Institute: NAGPRA: Preparing for and Writing Grant Proposals, Anchorage (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)



  • April 21-22 Alaska Office of History and Archaeology workshop, Anchorage (Mark Rollins, 907.269.8722 / mark.rollins@alaska.gov)

  • April 26-27 National Preservation Institute: GIS: Practical Applications for Cultural Resource Projects, Anchorage (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)


  • May 9-12 Yukon Historical and Museum Association, International Centre for Northern Governance and Development, University of Saskatchewan, and Yukon College: The North and the First World War Conference, Whitehorse, YT ( conference@heritageyukon.ca / www.heritageyukon.ca)

  • May 9-10 National Preservation Institute: The Secretary of the Interior’s Standards: Treatment Considerations, Anchorage (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)

  • May 12-13 National Preservation Institute: The Secretary of the Interior’s Standards: Treatment Considerations, Sitka (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)


  • National Alliance of Preservation Commissions Forum, Mobile, AL (NAPC, 706.369.5881 / napc@uga.edu)