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National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act of 2000
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NHLPA Application Criteria

An application packet for the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Program will be sent to eligible entities by the National Park Service once they are qualified by the General Services Administration. Following is a sample of what might be required of potential applicants. Please note this information is provided for reference only and is subject to change. Therefore it is not advisable to assemble an application for a historic light station prior to receiving a cover letter and official application packet from the National Park Service.

Must include:

  • Name of applicant organization and representative
  • Name of prospective transferee (if different from applicant organization)
  • Physical address of applicant organization: street, city, state, zip code
  • Daytime telephone number of applicant organization and/or representative
  • Mail Address (if different from physical address)
  • Name of historic light station property and GSA Control #
  • Physical address of property: street, city, county, state, zip code

Provide a general statement that summarizes in one page the overall goals of this project, describing the intended use and future plans. Include a statement of why the Applicant(s) should be the recipient of the property.

Do not include copies of newspaper articles, etc. as a means of conveying information - they will not be read for content. They may be attached, however, as an appendix to document local interest and visibility of the lighthouse and community involvement.

  • Provide a physical description of the historic light station being requested, including character defining features of the historic buildings and structures and key geographic features (topography, vegetative cover, water bodies, and other natural features). The text must identify cultural, and natural property features, including historic structures, buildings, archeological features or sites, and general landscape.
  • Discuss the historical value of this particular property (i.e. integrity of workmanship, materials, character, role, and setting). If the property is listed in the National Register of Historic Places, do not repeat information found in the nomination but reference the enclosed nomination.
  • Indicate where the principal access roads will be located to and within the property, as well as public parking areas, if applicable
  • Describe the relationship of the property to the surrounding uses and adjacent properties.
Supporting documentation must include:
  • a map or site plan;
  • a set of exterior and interior photographs for each structure and the overall setting of the subject property adequately documenting spaces and features addressed in the "Property Description" and "Preservation and Maintenance Plan." These need not be professional photographs but should be clear color or black and white, 35mm prints. Digital prints may be submitted ONLY if developed by a professional lab. Polaroid and digital photographs other than those developed by a professional lab are not acceptable as their prints are not archivally stable. A map of the site (may be a free hand drawing or duplicate of an existing drawing) indicating the direction of the photographs may be helpful; and
  • a copy of the National Register of Historic Places nomination form or a copy of the Determination of Eligibility.


a. Preservation and Maintenance Plan
Provide plans for the preservation and maintenance of the historic light station property in graphic and narrative form. Detailed plans and specifications are not expected, but it must be clear that the Applicant has fully recognized areas of historic significance and will plan to minimize the impact of any proposed work on these significant areas .


  • For each historic building/structure and landscape feature of the property, describe how it will be repaired, rehabilitated, restored or preserved -- include the impacts of new utilities, handicap accessibility, parking and other modifications.
  • For archeological areas, describe security and maintenance to stabilize the site, control vegetal growth, or avoid damage.
  • Describe how hazardous materials including but not limited to lead paint and asbestos will be handled. All remediation must conform to state regulations.
  • List the increments and time schedules for phased preservation work and the estimated cost of each increment.
  • Provide summaries of any supporting documentation used in the development of plans such as historic structures reports and engineering studies. (NPS may request full copies of these reports at a later date.)
  • Describe preservation planning experience at this and other similar sites managed by your team.


  • Describe the cyclical maintenance plan for both the built and natural environment.
  • Describe maintenance planning experience at this and other similar sites managed by your team.

b. Use Plan
Describe in detail the planned use of the historic light station.

  • Describe the educational, park, recreation and/or cultural use of the property and how this will be implemented. Include estimated time the historic light station will be open to the general public.
  • Establish the suitability of the property for the proposed uses and the compatibility of the proposed revenue producing activities with the historical and/or architectural character of the property.
  • Discuss how the proposed use will meet both federal and state accessibility laws and regulations.
  • Differentiate between public-use activities and revenue-producing activities.
  • Identify any portions of the property to which public access will be denied or restricted, such as the support areas and USCG controlled areas.
  • Compare the planned use of this site with work your organization has performed in the past.

c. Financial Plan
Demonstrate the Applicant's financial ability to acquire, develop, maintain, and operate the historic light station for the proposed use.

  • Provide a statement of current assets and cash flow. Identify projected income from all sources, including income from fundraising, specific grants, cash and in-kind matching funds with specific dollar amounts. Identify projected expenses for repair, rehabilitation, recurring maintenance, insurance, and administration and operation of the historic light station as identified in the preservation and maintenance plan.
  • Provide either audited financial statements or financial statements reviewed by a certified public accountant for the past three (3) years.
  • Provide budget summaries for the next five (5) years, describing the preservation and on-going maintenance and operation costs needed to bring the property to optimal condition and to maintain it in that condition.
  • Identify any capital already invested in the operation and maintenance, preservation, or educational use at this or any other historic site.

d. Management Plan
Provide a management plan that includes organizational structure, stewardship history and capability, and administrative procedures.

  • Describe the organizational structure. If you are submitting a joint application (i.e., multiple organizations forming a partnership to manage the light station), describe how each organization will contribute to the effort; how the organizations will work together and make decisions; and which organization will own the lighthouse. For joint applications, all partners must provide a written statement that defines roles, responsibilities, and financial commitments. Newly-formed organizations may not have the required knowledge and experience to be successful candidates and may wish to consider forming a partnership with an established organization with expertise that can complement areas in which the new organization is deficient.
  • If the applicant currently holds a license or lease with the USCG for the historic light station property, provide a copy of the insurance binder or certificate. If the applicant does not hold a license or lease, provide a copy of an insurance estimate for the property.
  • Include letters of support from outside organizations; please note that letters should specify the type of support to be provided (e.g., technical assistance, financial commitments, shared space, advertising, willingness to create an exhibit or other interpretive material, fund-raising, transportation, etc.). These letters are from organizations that are providing narrowly defined assistance to the applicant or joint applicants.
In addition, non-profit corporations must provide:
  • evidence of qualifying state non-profit status;
  • corporate by-laws;
  • corporate officers by name and title;
  • description of succession plan; and
  • number of existing members -- DO NOT include a list of members.

A covenant agreement will be included in the NHLPA application packet - it will need to be read and signed by applicant and submitted with other application materials

The Applicant must submit a certified copy of a resolution, certificate of authority, or similar public document executed by its governing body, that states its desire and ability to acquire surplus Federal property, and designates the person legally authorized to apply for the property. A sample format is available in the application packet. This document should be separate from the application packet and attached to the end of your completed application. The resolution or certification to acquire property must contain the following:

a. A statement that the application is being made for acquisition of the property under the provisions of the National Historic Lighthouse Preservation Act (16 U.S.C. § 470w-7) and procedures promulgated thereunder.
b. Identification of the name, location, acreage, and General Services Administration Control Number, if applicable, of the property requested.
c. An authorization to acquire the property exclusively for education, park, recreation, cultural or historic preservation purposes for the general public.
d. A certification that the Applicant is authorized, willing, and able to assume liability and responsibility for the development, maintenance, and operation of the property.
e. A designation by title of a specific official to act as the authorized representative in all matters pertaining to the transfer of the property.
f. A certification that the Applicant is willing and authorized to pay the administrative expenses incident to the transfer.

The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) (P.L.91-190) requires an analysis of the probable environmental effects of the proposed project. The applicant shall provide information responsive to the environmental questionnaire found at the end of the application packet. The Applicant must furnish sufficient information to demonstrate that it has considered all environmental impacts cited in the questionnaire. Processing of applications will be deferred pending receipt of such information, since required assessment of the environmental impact of any particular project cannot be initiated without prior submission of such data by the applicant. Applicants are cautioned that conformance with these procedures shall not obviate the need for compliance with applicable State and local environmental use and review requirements. The GSA will examine the information and determine whether the analysis is acceptable. In the event that preparation of further documentation is necessary, the applicant may be requested to furnish additional materials to the GSA in order to prepare an Environmental Assessment or Environmental Impact Statement.

Provide a narrative explanation of the probable environmental effects of the proposed program of use and preservation occurring in each of the following 12 areas of importance. The environment should be considered as the area that the proposed project would both impact and serve. The greatest detail should concern the probable environmental impact of the project on the particular property and its surrounding community, both in the short and long term. This section should broadly and briefly discuss the geography of the area, wildlife, water and air quality, area population, and potential users of the service to be provided, the economy of the area, and any current environmental concerns.

1. Please describe the specific property that will be directly affected in terms of its current use and proposed use. If the land is in a natural state, please provide a brief description with respect to plant and animal life.

2. Describe the surrounding area. Is it primarily residential, industrial, agricultural, etc.? Is the property in a rural, urban, or suburban area? Has the area been formally zoned for specific uses? Please provide a map of the immediate area covering approximately one square mile.

3. If the proposed action is in a floodplain or affects a floodplain, please list all pertinent restrictions (with citations) on land use under Federal, State, and local laws and regulations, and any actions applicant proposes to mitigate foreseeable adverse effects.

4. Will the proposed action directly or indirectly affect a wetland? Please list any pertinent Federal, State, and local wetland regulations and any actions applicant proposes to mitigate foreseeable adverse effects.

5. Will the proposed action have a direct or indirect effect on any Federally or State-listed endangered species? If so, please describe any impacts as well as any actions applicant proposes in order to mitigate foreseeable adverse effects.

6. Is it reasonably foreseeable that the proposed activity will have a direct or indirect effect on natural resources, land uses, or water uses in the coastal zone? If so, describe how the applicant will comply with the State's enforceable and mandatory coastal zone policies. Please describe any impacts as well as any actions applicant proposes in order to mitigate foreseeable adverse effects.

7. Approximately how many visitors will be introduced to the area on a daily basis during operations? Approximately how many vehicles will be introduced into the area on a daily basis as a result of the operation of the facility? Will there be any identifiable increased traffic in the surrounding area as result of the proposed use of the property?

8. How much water will the applicant use on the property in a normal day? What system will provide the water (name and address of system)? How much sewage will the applicant generate on a daily basis? Will the sewage be handled by a sewage treatment facility? If so, please provide the name and address of the system.

9. Will the proposed use of the property likely result in the use, storage, release and/or disposal of toxic, hazardous, or radioactive materials, or in the exposure of people to those materials? If so, please describe these proposed activities.

10. Will the proposed use of the property destroy or decrease access to any known or potential archeological sites? If so, please describe any impacts as well as any actions applicant proposes in order to mitigate foreseeable adverse effects.

11. Will the proposed use of the property violate or require a variance from any Federal, Tribal, State or local laws pertaining to the visual environment, odors, public health, and noise? If so, please describe any impacts as well as any actions applicant proposes in order to mitigate foreseeable adverse effects.

12. Will the proposed use of the property violate or require a variance from any Federal, Tribal, State or local laws pertaining to land, air or water pollution or land use? If so, please describe any impacts as well as any actions applicant proposes in order to mitigate foreseeable adverse effects.

Also included should be the name of the preparer; qualifications of the preparer and contact information including mailing address, telephone number, fax number and email.

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Last Modified: Mon, Oct 31, 2005 3:21:02 pm EDT

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