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Pennsylvania House of Representatives
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House Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: June 21, 2023 01:17 PM
From: Representative Joe Ciresi
To: All House members
Subject: Historic and Older Building Redevelopment Assistance Grant Program
Pennsylvania is home to many historic communities with buildings in need of renovation as they do not comply with modern building codes. However, renovations can be complicated and costly depending on the age, condition, and intended use of the building. This can provide obstacles to communities seeking to revitalize their downtowns and return vacant buildings to productive use.
In order to bring these buildings up to modern day standards, I am introducing legislation to create a two-year pilot program administered by the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) to help renovate and redevelop historic and older buildings across the Commonwealth. This grant program will help older communities face the challenges of updating buildings in need of renovation and the high costs of bringing those buildings up to code. 
This program would be available to assist in bringing mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection systems up to code through the installation of modern equipment such as sprinklers, efficient HVAC systems, elevators, and extra stairs. Additionally, these grants may be used to make improvements to entryways and other building features to make buildings more accessible for people with disabilities. Moreover, the rehabilitation of existing buildings creates thousands of construction jobs every year. In fact, historic preservation creates more jobs for the dollar than new construction.
These improvements would be intended for and evaluated on the basis of their ability to facilitate income-generating use of the property, their contribution to economic and community revitalization, and historic preservation and commercial or recreational opportunities for the public.
I hope you will consider supporting the redevelopment and renovation of older buildings to achieve code compliance, better accessibility, and maintain the architectural integrity and historic beauty of our communities. Please consider joining me in co-sponsoring this legislation so that historic and older buildings throughout Pennsylvania remain safe to use.

Introduced as HB1573