In a 6/0 vote at its May 23 meeting, the Historic Preservation Commission (HPC) not only moved to support four relatively minor recommendations for incentives related to the city’s 38 historically-designated apartment buildings, but also included several broader incentives which the West Hollywood Preservation Alliance (WHPA) had urged the commission to support.

Foremost among these are: establishing a much more robust “Historic Apartment Preservation Program” as outlined in consultant firm Page & Turnbull’s report on Page 30; hiring a full-time city staffer devoted to historic preservation issues; and using grants under the Community Development Block Grant Program to assist owners of historic buildings. WHPA members Cynthia Blatt, George Credle, Stephanie Harker, and Victor Omelczenko testified before the commission. The WHPA statement submitted to the HPC appears below.

The HPC’s hearing and recommendations are just the first step in a process that includes a May 26 Rent Stabilization Committee hearing and a June 2 Planning Commission hearing. A final city staff report will then be developed for City Council consideration at its August 15 meeting. The WHPA will continue to monitor the process and comment on proposed incentives – which, if enacted, would do much to bolster the city’s contention that it puts a high priority on historic preservation.