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Certified Local Government Program (CLG)

The 1980 amendments to the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended, provided for the establishment of a Certified Local Government Program (CLG) to encourage the direct participation of local governments in the identification, evaluation, registration, and preservation of historic properties within their jurisdictions and promote the integration of local preservation interests and concerns into local planning and decision-making processes. The CLG program is a partnership among local governments, the State of California (OHP), and the National Park Service (NPS) which is responsible for administering the National Historic Preservation Program.

As part of the CLG Program, federal grants are awarded annually to local governments to assist with historic preservation programs. The most recent California CLG grant recipients are listed below. To learn more about the grant program, please visit our CLG Grant Program webpage.


Five cities and counties will receive $172,000 in federal grants to assist local historic preservation programs.  California is required to issue a minimum of ten percent of its yearly share of federal funds received through the National Park Service Historic Preservation Fund Grants Program to local governments whose preservation programs have been certified by the NPS. This year, for the first time, OHP raised the maximum grant from $25,000 to $40,000. 

California’s Certified Local Government grants are awarded on a competitive basis and require a 40 percent local government match that can be provided using a combination of public funds, private funds, and allowable in-kind donations.

Berkeley, $30,000.  The city will complete necessary research and carry out an intensive level historic property survey work to complete the 2012 Downtown Area Plan.  This effort will guide planning in areas where development pressure is expected.

Davis, $40,000.  The city will update its historic property survey to identify and evaluate buildings constructed up to and including 1975.  The effort will consolidate earlier survey findings as well as adding new properties to the city’s inventory.

Fresno, $40,000.  The City will conduct an intensive historic property survey of the South Van Ness Industrial District.  The area includes Fresno’s historic Armenian Town, along with a mix of commercial and industrial buildings, many related to the railroad and fruit packing.

Los Angeles, $22,000.  The city will develop a Latino Historic Context to be included as part of SurveyLA’s citywide historic context statement.  The effort will be coordinated with the Latino theme study prepared by the NPS and the Latino’s in 20th Century California Historic Context prepared by the State Office of Historic Preservation.

San Francisco, $40,000.  The City and County of San Francisco will carry out Phase II of a historic resource survey focused on neighborhood commercial buildings, constructed between 1870 and 1965, that are subject to a recently enacted mandatory seismic retrofit program for soft-story buildings.

What are the requirements to be a CLG?

  • Enforce appropriate state and local laws and regulations for the designation and protection of historic properties;
  • Establish an historic preservation review commission by local ordinance;
  • Maintain a system for the survey and inventory of historic properties;
  • Provide for public participation in the local preservation program; and
  • Satisfactorily perform responsibilities delegated to it by the state.

  • How can a local government get certified?

    Any general purpose political subdivision with land-use authority is eligible to become a CLG. A local government may apply to become a CLG by submitting an application, signed by the chief elected official of the applying local government, to OHP. If the applicant meets the criteria, OHP will forward the application and recommend certification to the NPS who makes the final cerification decision. When the NPS is in agreement with OHP's recommendation, a certification agreement is signed by OHP and the local government, completing the certification process. It is the local government that is certified, not simply the preservation commission.

    Why become a CLG?

    What’s in it for the local jurisdiction? Why would you want to associate your local preservation program with state and federal programs? Would you be giving up autonomy?


    CALCLG-L is maintained by the California State Office of Historic Preservation and is one of the ways we disseminate CLG program information and provide technical assistance to CLGs. It also serves as an open forum for the posting of questions by list members and discussion of issues of interest to CLGs.

    This list is open to Office of Historic Preservation staff, local government CLG coordinators, planners, members of local historical review commissions or boards, and other local government employees or volunteers who have professional responsibilities or interests related to their Certified Local Government Program. Guest memberships are available to staff members of cities who are considering or in the process of becoming CLGS.