Governor's Office for Local Development
Governor Ernie Fletcher Awards LaGrange with Cemetery Preservation Funds

Press Release Date:  Thursday, March 16, 2006  
Contact Information:  Samantha Cook
Public Information Officer

            Governor Ernie Fletcher and the Governor’s Office for Local Development (GOLD) awarded the LaGrange Baptist Church with a $4,000 Cemetery Preservation Grant for the Lick Branch Baptist Church Cemetery. 

            Governor Ernie Fletcher said, “The conservation of local cemeteries is important to many communities as it preserves the history of an area.  This funding will allow the Lick Branch Baptist Church Cemetery to remain a part of the LaGrange past.”

Cemetery Preservation Funds will be used for cleaning, tombstone repairs and fencing. 

"Funding to protect cemeteries is very important," said Senator Ernie Harris (R-Crestwood).  "The families who have loved ones in the Lick Branch Baptist Cemetery will certainly appreciate the efforts of the local community to maintain the cemetery.”

            "Cemeteries are important not only for families who have lost loved ones, but for those seeking to find their historical roots," noted Representative David Osborne (R-Prospect). "I am pleased that the LaGrange Baptist Church was awarded funding for their efforts to improve the conditions of the cemetery."

            Representative Rick Rand (D-Bedford) said, “With the abundance of resources available on the Internet, more people than ever are researching their genealogy.  By preserving our local cemeteries, we help folks connect with their past and generate a history of their families.”

            The Kentucky Cemetery Preservation program funds maintenance, preservation and restoration activities.  Examples of maintenance activities include initial cleanup and landscaping, purchasing equipment, fencing, signage and improving interior roads. Preservation and restoration activities include acquiring conservation easements, surveying boundaries and repairing and cleaning tombstones.

Other activities that are eligible for funding are historic research, archiving, training to support cemetery preservation and improving access roads.

Counties may establish five-member county cemetery boards to apply for grants. State agencies, local governments, and certain nonprofit organizations – cemeteries, historical and genealogical groups, and local civic groups – also may apply. However, applications from county boards will receive funding priority.

The maximum grant that a group can receive is $25,000 and the minimum grant is $1,000, and a one-to-one local match is required.

A five-member state board oversees the program and makes funding decisions. The state board is comprised of representatives from the Kentucky Heritage Council (KHC), the Kentucky Historical Society, the Kentucky Association of Counties (KACo) and the Kentucky African-American Heritage Commission and chaired by the Commissioner of GOLD.