Boards & Commissions

Historic Preservation Commission

Historic Preservation Commission Rules & Procedures

  • Approved 8-5-80
  • Amended 12-18-84
  • Amended 12-17-85
  • Amended June 1992
  • Amended Oct 1998
Rule 1. Filing of Application

Applications for change of zones related to the designation of a Landmark or Landmark District shall be filed on or before noon of the fourth Friday preceding the Historic Preservation Commission meeting.

Applications for certificate for certain work on Landmarks or in Landmark Districts shall be filed on or before noon of the third Friday preceding the Preservation Commission meeting.

Rule 2. Notice

Legal notice of all matters to come before the Preservation Commission requiring such legal notice shall be given as required by law. In addition, the Preservation Commission will endeavor to give notice to agencies or organizations with interest in the Historic Preservation Commission at least eight (8) days before the date of the public hearing on matters that may be of interest to them and to inform the public through the news media.

The Preservation Commission will meet regularly on the 3rd Thursday of each month.

The following chart shows the usual scheduling of public hearings and action by the Preservation Commission for various matters:

Type of
Application
Public
Hearing
Action by Commission
Change of Zone (Landmark) 1st meeting 2nd meeting
Change of Zone (Landmark District) 1st meeting 2nd meeting
Certificate for work on Landmark or in Landmark District not involving demolition or substantial new construction 1st meeting 2nd meeting
Certificate for work on Landmark or in Landmark District not involving demolition or substantial new construction (when a complete application is received and mailed to the Commission with a staff report in advance of the meeting) 1st meeting 1st meeting
Special Permit 1st meeting 2nd meeting

The Preservation Commission shall begin its meetings in a place open to the public in the County-City Building. Other public meetings shall be held as designated by the Preservation Commission. Public hearings will be held first on the agenda and then the Preservation Commission shall vote on those items which can be acted upon as noted above.

Rule 3. Agenda

An agenda of the matters to come before the Preservation Commission will be prepared by the Planning Director and mailed to all Preservation Commission members and known interested parties on the Friday prior to the public hearing. Items not on the agenda will not be heard by the Commission unless by 4 votes of the Preservation Commission, it determines that an emergency exists and that the public interest dictates that the matter be heard.

There will be an addendum listing items that may be pending; as a result of a referral by City Council or Planning Commission, items postponed from previous meetings, or requests by the Commission for action, but not yet on the agenda.

The matters shall be heard in the order that the items appear on the agenda.

Rule 4. Nature of Testimony

The role and function of the Preservation Commission is to advise the Planning Commission and legislative and administrative branches of government concerning historic preservation matters. Testimony before the Preservation Commission should be relative to the historic preservation aspects of the matter being heard. A written statement supporting the requested applications or in opposition to the requested applications may be submitted to the Commission at the public hearing or accompany the application when filed. The written statement need not be read to the Commission as a part of the public hearing in order to be included as a part of the public hearing minutes.

A copy of Rules 4. 5 and 6 should be distributed to each applicant to appear before the Preservation Commission at the time of the filing of the application with the City of Lincoln.

The Preservation Commission may ask questions of the person testifying. There shall however, be no cross-examination or direct questioning in front of the Preservation Commission between proponents and opponents.

Material and testimony submitted should be as factual.

Rule 5. Presentation of Testimony

All those testifying shall first state their names and addresses.

The applicant or the applicant's representative will be requested to present his/her testimony first. If the party appearing is a representative, the representative shall state the nature of his/her representative capacity. The application or representative shall present his/her case as succinctly as possible and should state:

  1. Why the applicant desires the action requested.
  2. Why the application is justified under the Historic Preservation District Ordinance, Chapter 27.57 of the Lincoln Municipal Code.
  3. The applicant or the applicant's representative, will be entitled to a brief rebuttal after the opponent's testimony is concluded.

Those in favor of or opposed to the application shall then be called upon to present their testimony. Each individual should present his/her reasons why the application is or is not in accordance with sound planning practices.

Fifteen (15) minutes for testimony is preferred as a maximum; however, no more than 30 minutes should be taken by either proponents or opponents. The Chair may grant additional time in advance of the meeting for items of major significance. Speakers may request more time and the Preservation Commission may either grant or deny such requests.

It is requested that large groups in attendance concerned with an application chose one or two spokesmen to present the group's testimony.

It should be recognized, however, that the Commission is interested in only factual information and not in popularity contests.

Speakers should not present repetitious testimony. The Chair of the Preservation Commission shall reserve the right to discontinue at any time during repetitions or non-related testimony.

A sign in sheet may be circulated in order that persons in attendance may indicate their desire to testify or merely indicate their position on an application.

Rule 6. Withdrawal or Deferral

Any matter which has been advertised for public hearing may be withdrawn or deferred prior to preparation of the agenda on the Thursday before the Preservation Commission meeting. Once the agenda has been prepared, items may be withdrawn with approval of the Chairperson or Vice-Chairperson if the Chairperson is out of town or unavailable.

If applicants' request deferrals after the property has been posted, then such deferral shall be for a period of at least 60 days. The time period may be waived for good cause, shown in writing to the Planning Department prior to the Preservation Commission meeting at which the applicant wishes to submit the matter.

Rule 7. Final Action

As required by the Lincoln Municipal Code, four affirmative voters are required for final action on any matter. "Final Action" shall be defined to mean any vote on a main motion which results in a favorable or unfavorable disposition of an agenda matter. All subsidiary votes and procedural votes, such as amendments, additions and /or deletions; may be determined by the majority vote of the quorum present at any meeting.

A vote on final action on a matter not receiving four or more votes either for or against said matter shall be deemed to have received neither approval nor disapproval and shall, without further order of the Preservation Commission, be continued from regular meeting to regular meeting and voted upon once at each such meeting until such time as it shall receive four votes either for or against.

Rule 8. Special Meetings

Special meetings of the Commission may be called by the Chairperson, Vice-Chairperson or three (3) members of the Preservation Commission.

Rule 9. Suspension of Rules

Any and all rules may be suspended by four affirmative votes of the Preservation Commission.

Rule 10. Amendment of Rules

These rules may be amended by four affirmative votes of the Preservation Commission.

Rule 11. Election of Vice-Chairperson

The Preservation Commission shall elect a Vice-Chairperson for a one-year term.