Leland Historic Preservation Commission
The Leland Historic Preservation Commission, created in 2000 as part of a broader city historic preservation ordinance, consists of nine volunteers who ensure the city’s historic resources are protected and promoted. Using the Secretary of Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation and the locally developed Design Review Guidelines, the Commission works with the Mississippi Department of Archives and History to implement best practices for historic preservation. The primary mission is to prohibit inappropriate development within the local historic district and to prevent loss of historic properties due to demolition or neglect. To accomplish this, the Commission requires an architectural review of new construction and exterior alteration to existing buildings located in the historic district, which means that a property owner must submit an application for a Certificate of Appropriateness (COA) to the Commission and receive approval before work is started or building permits are obtained. This process guarantees property improvements based on accepted standards, which, in turn, increases property values by protecting historical integrity and enhances property attractiveness to tourists and potential buyers.
William Powell, Chairman
Emily Poole, Vice Chairman
Daryl Lewis, Secretary
Mary Boteler, Certified Local Government Coordinator
To qualify for appointment to the Commission by the Mayor and Board of Aldermen, persons with a demonstrated knowledge or special interest in architecture, history, real estate, or other preservation-related field submit an application or résumé. Once appointed, they must attend annual training sessions to update their knowledge and recertify the Commission.
Commissioners hold public meetings the third Monday of each month at the Leland Library at 6:00 p.m.
2001—The Commission designated the boundaries of the local historic district, which were confirmed by city ordinance as the residences surrounding Deer Creek, the business district bounded by Main and Broad and Deer Creek and Seventh Street, the Millsaps Addition, and select areas bordering South Broad that contain many of the city’s oldest homes and churches.
2001—The Commission achieved Mississippi Landmark status for the City Hall (formerly the Bank of Leland).
2003—The Commission contracted for a survey of the local historic district, which determined that Leland’s historic district includes 133 properties in the business district and 187 in the residential areas.
2004—The Commission oversaw the nomination and placing of the local historic district on the National Register of Historic Places.
2006—The Commission wrote the application and secured the City of Leland’s designation as a Preserve America community, making it eligible for substantial preservation grants.
2009—The Commission developed and printed a color brochure of the local historic district to promote tourism.
2010—The Commission initiated the PROUD Award—Property Recognized as Outstanding and Unique in the District—to acknowledge and encourage appropriate renovations to property in the local historic district.
2011—The Commission erected signs designating the boundaries of the local historic district along with “Welcome to Historic Leland” signs at highway entrances.
2013—The Commission placed new street signs in the downtown historic district.
2013—The Commission spearheaded the successful effort to name the Main Street Bridge a Mississippi Landmark in order to seek grant funding for its restoration.
2014—The Commission received a $10,000 grant to rehabilitate the Main Street Bridge to its 1920s appearance.