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Certified Local Government (CLG) Grant Program

Grants to Iowa Cities and Counties for Preservation
Projects and Pre-Development Activities

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs - State of Iowa Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) and National Park Service (NPS)

Deadline Date:

09/03/20 11:59 PM


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Grants to Iowa counties, cities, and land-use districts in eligible areas to support a broad range of historic preservation activities. Funding is intended for programs that promote local preservation efforts. Grants may be used for historic surveys and evaluations, preservation planning, public education projects, planning projects, and preparing a nomination for the national recognition of a historic site.

The Certified Local Government program seeks to:

  1. Develop and maintain local historic preservation programs that will influence local decisions critical to historic properties, and
  2. Ensure the broadest possible participation of local governments in the national historic preservation program while maintaining preservation standards established by the Secretary of the Interior.

Eligible activities include those that involve looking for and establishing the significance of buildings, structures, sites, objects or districts are eligible. In historic preservation language, these activities are described as identification, evaluation, and registration. Planning activities are eligible when the focus is on historic preservation.

For information about Eligible Projects and Categories, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 145436

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

There is no cap for grant projects but please use common sense in making your requests. For example, a request for $25,000 would mean that one Certified Local Government would be receiving about a third of the Certified Local Government grant allocation. Unless the project dealt with a National Historic Landmark or was extremely compelling, it is unlikely that $25,000 or more would be awarded.

It is important that you ask for enough funding to cover project costs. It is better to ask for a slightly larger grant than a reduced one.

Term of Contract:

Work can begin when the Certified Local Government receives the Notice to Proceed and a Grant in Aid Agreement that has been signed by the State and the Chief Elected Official of the Certified Local Government. Costs incurred prior to this will not qualify as grant-related expenses and will not be reimbursed or regarded as match.

Generally, preliminary work, such as sending Requests for Proposals and signing on consultants, will begin in February following the announcement in December. Grant projects that are not underway by June 1 are subject to cancellation.

Projects must be completed by June 30 of the following year.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

To qualify for a Certified Local Government grant, a city or county must meet two criteria:
1. Have a certified local historic preservation program: The city or county must have an established local historic preservation program by ordinance or resolution, applied for and received Certified Local Government status from the National Park Service, Department of the Interior.
2. Be current in Certified Local Government Annual Report submittals: The city or county must be current in their submission of Iowa Certified Local Government Annual Report forms. This means that the Certified Local Government city or county has submitted all Iowa annual report forms through the prior year and is in good standing.

The grant is awarded to the city or county government. Typically, the city clerk or county auditor serves as the fiscal agent for the grant. That person is responsible for issuing payment to the consultant and paying other bills associated with the project. That same person will receive the reimbursement check from the state (typically at the conclusion of the project) and deposit it in the local government’s account.

Certified Local Government grants cannot be used to cover the cost of preparing the grant applications, construction or rehabilitation projects, landscaping, building maintenance, acquisition of property, or the cost of moving properties. Certified Local Government grants cannot be used to cover the cost of doing archival research unrelated to historic properties or the cost of workshops, publications, flyers exhibits that do not directly relate to historic preservation. Certified Local Government grants cannot be used for museum projects that do not directly relate to historic preservation.

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline for final applications is September 3, 2020, at 11:59 PM.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit a draft application for review and comment. The deadline for draft applications is August 14, 2020, at 11:59pm, and must be submitted through Slideroom. You can expect to receive comments back in about a week.

Applicants should check with their city clerk or county auditor to find out how much lead time is required to place the grant application approval on the city council or board of supervisor’s agenda. Do not delay in getting this approval of your local government and the signed letter from your Chief Elected Official (mayor, chair of the board of supervisors or president of the land use district).

Applicants will be notified in December. A CLG city or county may submit more than one application per grant round.

Certified Local Government grants have a 60:40 match ratio. This means that the Certified Local Government grant will cover 60% of the total project costs, and the Certified Local Government will provide 40% of the total project cost as match. For example, if the total cost for a project is $1,000, then the Certified Local Government requests a grant of $600 and provides a match of $400. The $400 may be all cash, all in-kind match or a combination of the two.

Grants are paid on a cost-reimbursement basis.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Submit a draft application or final application:

Paula A. Mohr
(515) 281-6826

State Historical Society of Iowa
State Historical Building
600 East Locust Street
Des Moines, IA 50319-0290

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Iowa

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