Excerpt from MyEasternShoreMD:
To the editor: A March 16 Kent County News article quoted Jay Yerkes saying, “It’s okay for the Historic District Commission (HDC) to be difficult and challenging. It’s not OK to be rude.”
As chairperson of the commission, I apologize to anyone who feels that we have treated them rudely. We are a group of dedicated volunteers appointed by your mayor and town council. Our mission is to safeguard our heritage, stabilize and improve property values, foster civil beauty, strengthen the local economy (and) to promote preservation according to the secretary of the interior’s Standards of Rehabilitation.
Those standards are laid out in the Historic District Guidelines, developed locally and accessible on the town website or at the town hall.
Property values appreciate almost 30 percent faster in historic districts, and businesses capitalize on its character. The Chestertown Tea Party and Downrigging Weekend draw thousands to the town. The character and beauty of the Historic District, with its carefully restored homes and businesses, are essential parts of those experiences that the HDC works to protect.
The HDC seeks to apply the guidelines fairly and rationally. Applications are thoroughly discussed at our open monthly meetings. The majority of applications are approved, and requests for alterations are based on the guidelines.
The town clerk and zoning administrator are available to answer questions and often work closely with applicants in preparing their applications.
Mr. Yerkes and I discussed his concerns and we agree that protecting our buildings and heritage is a challenging task.
Historic District Commission