"Real liberty is neither found in despotism or the extremes of democracy, but in moderate governments.
Alexander Hamilton

Monday, January 18, 2016

LCHIP Program Funding in Jeopardy

NH House Rep. J.R. Hoell (r) Merrimac, is sponsoring legislation in 2016 (HB 1686) which would repeal the the community heritage investment program.
For those not familiar with this program more commonly known as LCHIP ( Land and Community Heritage Investment Program) it " is an independent state authority that makes matching grants to NH communities and non-profits to conserve and preserve New Hampshire's most important natural, cultural and historic resources. Through this investment Program every $1 in resources brings back more than five times local, private, federal funds, and helps to secure NH's greatest business advantage: The quality of life and traditional values of our state."
According to the Methodology contained in the analysis of the bill " The New Hampshire Land and Community Heritage Investment Program (LCHIP) and Treasury Department state this bill repeals LCHIP, the LCHIP trust fund, the LCHIP administrative fund, and LCHIP's funding mechanisms effective July 1, 2017.  Funding for the trust fund comes from the $25 surcharge applied to recording fees collected by county register of deeds.  This bill requires all funds held in the LCHIP trust fund to lapse to the general fund on June 30, 2016. " 

LCHIP has been funded since 2008 with the fees charged on four types of documents that are recorded at all the County Registry Offices across the state. These $25 fees generate about $4,000,000 per year and held in a Trust Fund at the New Hampshire Department of Treasury. Since 2000, $37M has been invested with 315 gants in 151 communities ( including Moultonboro) , conserved over 268,000 acres of land, preserved or revitalized 180 historic structures and leveraged more than $245M in funding from other sources. 
LCHIP works by providing a funding mechanism to at no cost to the state’s general fund, to preserve what are really our greatest advantages. Why throw it away for $4M in revenue? We should not continue to raid designated funds to balance the state budget. We pay fees to support those funds, and we should not have to question whether that money is going towards its stated purpose. 
If you feel as I do that this bill is shortsighted and will cause much more harm than good, please contact the NH House Finance Committee  where the bill currently resides and voice your opinion.


Joseph Cormier said...

It helped Castle in the Clouds ... and glad it did.


Some more info, including annual reports and audit reports:


Mellisa Seamans said...

I wrote one of the early grants that saved Effingham Town Hall. Every day, I am grateful for LCHIP when I drive by the magnificent building perched high on a hill in the center of our town.

Amen said...

Here we are attempting to "save" historic or older farm houses - and here this town has plans to tear down the Adele Taylor property. In the name of "progress". Opps. Progress is too close to the word progressive. Don't want to go there.
Let's save Moultonborough. But in order to save it we must tear it down.
With government money to boot.
Makes one wonder the mindset of the wonderful citizenry.

Moultonboro Blogger said...

There are no plans to tear down the Taylor property.