Pauli Halstead: What you need to know about the Historic District Initiative

In 1968, Nevada City determined that a departure from the Gold Rush-era architectural style would damage historic sites and buildings, and passed the Historical Ordinance to protect the downtown historic district from such changes.

Now, the City of Nevada Historic District Initiative seeks to expand the Historic District and apply strict architectural review criteria to all existing neighborhoods where it sees history.

In addition, the initiative will authorize the City Council to implement this evil agenda. The consequences for property owners in the newly expanded Historic District will be subject to the same cumbersome architectural reviews by the Planning Commission currently operating in the Historic District, resulting in untold expenses when maintaining, repairing or adding to your home.

The Nevada City Historic District Committee is going door-to-door distributing a petition for the Nevada City Historic District Initiative.

The initiative is designed to block the implementation of Senate Bill 9 (California’s EV Act), a multi-year effort to develop solutions to address our state’s housing crisis.

First: Read Senate Bill 9

Second: Read REGULATION 338: an ordinance for the City of Nevada that establishes a Historic District and provides regulations for the preservation, development, and maintenance of buildings therein.

A copy of the Full Enterprise can be obtained by sending a public records request to the city clerk.


“To the Honorable Clerk of the City of Nevada:

“We, the undersigned, registered and qualified voters of the City of Nevada, hereby propose an initiative measure to amend the Nevada City General Plan and the Nevada City Municipal Code. We request that you submit this measure to the Nevada City Council for adoption without amendment or to be presented to the City of Nevada voters in the earliest election for which it is eligible.


“A. Purpose: This Nevada City Historic District Initiative promotes the preservation of historic residential areas within the City of Nevada by designating historic residential areas under the Nevada City General Plan and the Nevada City Municipal Code. For the purposes of this initiative, historic neighborhoods are analode to the 1800s. The mid-1920s modern, neo-traditional ranch and other 20th-century designs of the 1900s that are 50 years or older, including simpler homes and cottages, are the results of Nevada City’s statewide and international reputation. creates the overall historic streetscape in its recognizable neighborhoods.. Specifically, the National Register of Historic Places uses ‘over 50’ as an assessment threshold to provide historical perspective.More than half of the homes in Historic Neighborhoods are over 50 years old.

“B. Impact: This initiative amends the General Plan to create neighborhoods of historic neighborhoods to identify predominant areas of historic homes within the city, including buildings of special historical or architectural interest or value. The initiative also changes the General Plan to ensure consistency with the General Plan. established the HDN, which consolidates the county settlement in the zoning ordinance of the municipal law. Properties within the HDN must comply with the city’s existing architectural review procedures. The initiative does not alter these procedures or alter their access, but rather guarantees that the architectural review procedures will continue to be applied within the HDN. This HDN and the unifying district layout cannot be changed except by popular vote. However, the City Council can add appropriate neighborhoods to expand the HDN without a public vote.“

Rest assured, the Historic District Initiative is designed to reduce your choices about what you can do with your property.

There will be no fear mongering involved with the proposed initiative, where the architectural character of the city will change significantly. We already have a lot of design guidelines.

Don’t let the City Council decide what you can and cannot do with your property. There is no reason to fear that our architectural heritage is at stake!

Pauli Halstead lives in Nevada City.

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