If Historic Tax Credits Don’t Turn You On – What About Unbreathable Paint?

Booker T. Washington Theater

However, you spent this past Tuesday, it wasn’t as much fun as what I got up to. I attended a Historic Tax Credit and Main Street Seminar at the Booker T. Theater. If that doesn’t make you weak in the knees, I don’t know what else to suggest. I mean a discussion about breathable and unbreathable paint!  Looking at slides of historical old homes with moisture damage and termites?  Kevin Harris gave us information about types of available Downtown Rocky Mount Building Assistance Programs. Peter Varney talked and led a tour of the Douglas Block area that was filled with valuable Varney first-hand information and an incredible institutional memory. Naomi Riley presented the Main Street Program in the afternoon which we’ll talk about another time.”It was a Way Cool! day.”

David Wise and Stepheny -speakers for The Professional Women’s quarterly meeting

Good News: New city Business and Downtown Development Coordinator David Wise, one of three new hires for the City, devised this workshop as part of celebrating Preservation month. You are going to enjoy knowing and benefiting from David’s expertise. He is an idea man. You will have to catch hold of his shirttail to restrain him or else let him take you up into the atmosphere of exciting possibilities for Main Street’s future. Will Deaton, Director of Development Services and Stephanie Goodrich, Senior Planner, complete the trinity of accomplished, educated, focused professionals who have hit the track running. They are great additions to the Saving Main Street efforts. Hallelujah.

Reid Thomas, a restoration specialist

The seminar featured Reid Thomas, a restoration specialist with the State Historic Preservation Office. Besides paint and termites and moisture damage, he spoke about historic preservation incentives at the state and federal levels.  He is a valuable resource with endless advice in downtown preservation efforts.

The Important Stuff:  There is a 20 percent federal tax credit and a 15 percent state tax credit for rehabilitating commercial or income-producing properties. The state will offer a 5 percent bonus if the property is in a county that the state Commerce Department considers economically distressed. Nash and Edgecombe counties are on that list.  A 5 percent bonus if the property has industrial structures that have been at least 65 percent vacant for two years. You are looking at a 35 to 45 percent tax credit, a large saving.

People can spread out the federal and state credits over time. The property needs to be listed on the National Register of Historic Places, either individually or in a historic district. The property also needs to meet standards set by the federal secretary of the interior. As for residences, homeowners may receive a 15 percent state tax credit for rehabilitating non-income-producing properties. This is a ‘once over lightly’ summation of the seminar, and there will be more opportunities like this in the future. It’s a good day when I learn something new. I intend to learn more about the world of historic tax credits, so important in preservation efforts. There is room for you in all of this. Join me.

 

We Celebrate a New Downtown Business – NABS – May 20th, 2019

On Friday I attended the soft opening of the new Deli and Coffee Shop, NABS – (Never A Better Sandwich). I walked into the dream of Yalem Kiros. I had a wonderful experience and so will you. Yalem is a native of Ethiopia, one of the world’s leading coffee producing countries. We know this lovely woman and cheerleader for Main Street because she and her husband, Ed Riley own The Prime Smokehouse, a destination with great food, wonderful service, and hospitality. Now NABS has been created from the dreams of Yalem, with her spirituality and love of people. NABS is a new gathering space for those living and working downtown, and everybody else looking for a great atmosphere, location, and a place to just ‘be.’

NABS will be offering fresh baked goods in the morning, as well as eggs. After breakfast, the deli menu plans to offer club sandwiches, combo sandwiches, jumbo sandwiches, meatball sub sandwiches, Reuben sandwiches, and chili dogs.
NABS also plans to offer Caesar salads, chef salads, grilled chicken salads, tuna salads and more than half a dozen kinds of soups.

 

On the coffee shop side, NABS plans to offer cappuccinos, frappes and lattes and a variety of teas as well as hot chocolate and spiced apple cider.

 

 

Officially open for business Monday, May 20
For now, NABS will be open from 7 a.m. to approximately 3-4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 8 a.m. to approximately 2-3 p.m. on Saturdays.

 

“There is nothing like a dream to create the future.”
Victor Hugo, Les Misérables

 

Every time a new business opens dreams manifest themselves.  Welcome to this newest dream on Main Street, and to the historic Douglas Block. Thank you, Yalem for helping to build Rocky Mount’s future. See everyone there!

 

Introducing the Researcher – The Anonymous Source

This is to announce that Main Street Rocky Mount now has an ‘anonymous source’ who will be referred to as the ‘di ricercatore,’ the Italian word for a researcher. The reason for the secrecy surrounding this source is that an interesting and brilliant man prefers to remain in the background. I can tell you that he is a historian and a genealogist among many other things, and he engages in the art of conversation on a myriad of subjects. Imagine my pleasure in discovering this story-teller is willing to share what he knows about the history of Rocky Mount and its citizenry. ‘Di Ricercatore,’ with his vast knowledge, links the social fabric of the times with those who lived and worked in Rocky Mount and beyond. It is endlessly fascinating.

As a writer, I know it is true that to write well, you must read well. My ‘anonymous source’ has an enviable library and is a fine writer.  As a researcher, he has piles of books pulled and at the ready for his various research projects. We’re going to collaborate from time to time, which will spark future posts about this place we call home and about the people we honor. Though I can not reveal the name of my  ‘anonymous source,’ he will be given credit when appropriate.

TUNE IN TOMORROW

Di Ricercatore brings to our attention,  Earl Carnegie Burnette (1907-76) Go to the Smokehouse for another great meal! and before leaving, stand outside and look kiddie-corner across the street. There in The Douglas Block once stood a drugstore. Earl Burnette initially worked in the Burnette Drug store as the employ of his uncle, B. J. Burnette. Tomorrow we will take up more of this story about this loved and respected man.

FYI: (and for fun) In the thirty years following the Watergate scandal, the identity of the most notorious ‘anonymous source’ in history remained a mystery. It was not until 2005 that the truth emerged in a Vanity Fair article in which William Mark Felt revealed himself to be the asset codenamed ‘Deep Throat.’ Perhaps in time, my source will reveal his name as well.

 

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