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DCCPF Annual Meeting Emphasis on Saving Courthouse Building.

December 7, 2009
Repair and Restoration of the courthouse building envelope was the focus of the Davis County Courthouse Preservation Fund’s annual meeting on November 30, 2009 at the Bloomfield Main Street office. Repair and rehabilitation of courthouse windows, clock tower structure and the main roof were discussed as the Board of Directors heard progress reports for 2009 and set program goals for 2010.

Tom Prosapio, owner’s representative and construction manager for the County Board of Supervisors, reported on the state of the building and emphasized the need for action. Restoration of the east and west entry doors was completed prior to the June 7, 2009 hailstorm. A Davis County Community Foundation Grant of $15,000 covered half the cost of the restoration. Fortunately the west entry doors and windows were not damaged by the hail. 

Work has been completed on the west and south façade windows. State Historical Society Historic Resource Development Grant Emergency funds were used to help defray the cost of the repairs. Since the Supervisors decided it was cost effective to repair entire windows and add insulation, the $15,000 grant, awarded in July of 2009, together with money from the insurance settlement covered only a percentage of the cost.   

Due in part to the large amount of damage caused by the hailstorm, repair of the clock tower and the main roof from the top of the statue to the outer edge of the main roof must be completed next to prevent further rapid deterioration of the building. Before work on the roof can begin, the clock tower must be entirely rehabilitated, including repairs to the timber structure and the entire tin façade. A 2008 Main Street Challenge Grant of $15,000 will partially cover the expense of the structural repair. 

The fund was successful in applying for the Iowa State Tax Credit Program. Tax credits equal to 25% of qualifying construction costs paid during a two-year period have been reserved for the 2011 tax year. The Fund may not apply for the actual certificates until after the completion of the courthouse rehabilitation project.

The DCCPF Board will continue to seek grant funds in 2009 and 2010 contingent on matching cash provided by the Board of Supervisors. Several ways to raise funds were discussed, including a year-end appeal, and developing a large email list for solicitation purposes.

In other action, Roger Wuthrich and Harold Leifer were elected, and Lana Doll was re-elected to the board for three-year terms. The following slate of officers was elected for two year terms: Linda Boatman, President; Judy Combs, First Vice President; Deb Baughman, Secretary; Gail Van Mersbergen, Treasurer.

The board voted to recognize in-kind donors whose hours are submitted and approved as part of a successful grant award, at the level corresponding to the dollar amount approved for payment by the grantor. Eligibility is retroactive to the formation of the fund in 2005. Tom Prosapio, Adam Wagler, and Harold Leifer qualify for recognition.

Submitted by Linda Boatman and Harold Leifer

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The Davis County Courthouse Preservation Fund is a 501(c)3 organization legally recognized by the IRS, and will be happy to provide necessary information to anyone who wishes to qualify for matching funds from their company. Please contact Linda Boatman at 312-848-4662, or desdir@aol.com, for further information and to answer any questions.