York councilman seeks to close historic preservation loophole

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There are over 20 architectural styles in the City of York, all of which one city council member says were put at risk over the past decade.

In 2004, a change in construction code cut the number of development projects that required a building permit to complete.

Some officials believe the change helped the city grow, but councilman Michael Helfrich says the way it was worded provided an unexpected consequence.

“It said when you come for a building permit, then you have to determine if you need a historic review,” Helfrich said.

Helfrich says since a majority of permits were being waived, so was the need for a historical review, making many preserved historic buildings in York essentially unpreserved.

At Tuesday’s council meeting, Helfrich said revisions were made to the 2004 ordinance that allowed it to reflect the council’s original intent for the code.

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