My article for the April issue of the Community Preservation Coalition's CPA Update examines the use of CPA funds to preserve and restore historic documents. Below is an excerpt:
In March 2006, the CPA statute was amended to include “documents and artifacts” within the definition of historic resources. Since that time, many communities have used CPA funds for document preservation projects, including document conservation and restoration projects and improvements to storage systems, such as installing climate controls.
However, in the process of reviewing applications for preservation of documents, CPCs and commissions have questioned which documents should qualify as “historic” under the definition contained in the CPA legislation. Since documents are not included on the State Register, it is necessary for the local historical commission to determine historic significance of documents per Section 2 of the Community Preservation Act (MGL c.44B). But, what evaluation criteria can commissions use?