Trustees approve historic plan

NORTHVILLE-Village trustees approved an initiative by the Community Collaboration Council to seek historic district status for the village.

During a Dec. 17 meeting, Community Collaboration Council members presented their plan to apply for historic district status for the village with the state Historic Preservation Office, part of the state Department of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation.

Council member Mike Intrabartola said the benefit of being part of the historic district was simple.

“What will happen is those homeowners and business owners, when they do improvements, they will recieve a tax break,” Intrabartola said.

According to John Spaeth, Community Collaboration Council member, businesses could recieve an income tax credit of 20 percent at the federal level and 20 percent at the state level of the cost of a renovation on a building that qualified with the state. A residence can recieve a state tax credit of 20 percent of the cost of the renovation if the renovation’s cost is over $5,000, he said.

According to Intrabartola, the district makes up Main and Bridge streets and portions of Division Street, as well as First Street through Sixth Street.

Intrabartola said any renovations had to be specific to the house’s historical nature, for “the preservation of the heritage of the building.”

“In other words, [SHPO] aren’t going to approve vinyl siding, vinyl windows,” Intrabartola said.

Spaeth said the process is only just beginning.

“The process basically is first communication,” Spaeth said.

Council member Brian Correll said the state has already done a study of the area, qualifying it.

According to Spaeth, the group has received approval from the village Board of Trustees. According to Spaeth, the next step would be to hold a public hearing with officials from the State Historic Preservation Office. The hearing would be to share information with the public regarding the tax credits. Following this, a hearing will be held where members of the public would be able to register their approval or disappoval with SHPO officials. If more than 51 percent of the public responses approve the project, the district will be formed.

According to Spaeth, the informational hearing on the subject will be held in late January or Feburary.