Purpose & Duties of the H/L&CCHPC

The Commission is specifically charged with the following purpose,responsibilities and duties:


A. To promote the preservation of historic and prehistoric sites, structures, objects, buildings and historic districts by addressing historic preservation issues at the local level and integrating them into local, state and federal planning and decision-making processes.
B. To provide record keeping and related service for the operation of the Commission.
C. To oversee the Historic Preservation Officer.
D. To develop and implement a policy for the effi­cient and effective operation of the Commission..

Specific Duties:

A. To review the development within the historic districts and any development affecting historical properties. Other duties are to insure compliance with the requirements of the Certified Local Government Program for Historic Preservation in a manner that also insures the promotion of public health, safety, morals, convenience, order and general welfare for the sake of efficiency and economy in the process of community development.
B. To serve in an advisory capacity to the local governing bodies establishing said Commission, and to the Helena / Lewis and Clark Consolidated Planning Board, the Helena Zoning Commission, the Helena Board of Adjustment, and other related bodies.
C. To advise the City and County in all matters pertaining to historic properties and historic districts within the jurisdictional area of the Commission.
D. To review and recommend an annual budget for the Commission consistent with the Fiscal Agent's guidelines, and mace recommendations to the Joint Commission on the budget.
E. To review all grants and to allocate the funds in accordance with the Fiscal Agent's guidelines.
F. To review the applications and applicants for the position of Historic Preservation officer and to select the most qualified applicant.
G. To operate the Commission and supervise the Historic Preservation officer.
H. To solicit input on a regular basis from other groups or organizations who have an interest in the Commission and the services ; provided by the Commission.
I. To review, recommend and keep the Joint Commission informed of any situations or circumstances which might reduce the service, capability or performance level of the Commission.

Helena/Lewis & Clark County Historic Preservation Commission Members - 2009

Pamela Attardo, Helena. Chair. Pamela was trained as an attorney and practiced on the east coast before moving to Helena with her family. She is active in several community groups and has been a member of the Historic Preservation Commission since 2006.

Wilbur Rehmann, Helena. Vice Chair. A well known musician, Wilbur is also a consultant in the fields of justice and management. He has served on a number of community boards and groups. A member of the HPC since 2004, Wilbur is also on the County open lands committee.

Joan Toole, Helena. An active member of many community groups over the years both in Helena and Missoula where she shared life with her husband, former professor of history K. Ross Toole. She joined the commission in 2007.

Susan Howsmon, Lincoln. Owner/Editor of the Blackfoot River Dispatch, Susan is heavily involved in local activities in the Lincoln area and has served on the HPC since 2007.

Richard "Dick" Alberts, York. A former Boeing engineer, Dick is involved with the York Historical Society and is a prominent contributor to activities related to Lewis & Clark Expedition history. He joined the HPC in 2007.


Vacancies on the preservation commission are filled by either the City Commission, the County Commission or both. Applications may be obtained by contacting either Commission office at the City-County building. Current H/L&CCHPC membership requirements are elaborate and overlapping. They presently read:

The Commission shall consist of nine (9) members; six (6) members, who shall be residents of Lewis & Clark County, to be selected jointly by the Lewis and Clark County Commissioners and the Helena City Commission, and three (3) at-large members, two (2) of whom shall be appointed by the Lewis and Clark County Commissioners and one (1) member to be appointed by the Helena City Commission.

A. Three (3) of the jointly selected members shall have professional expertise in the disciplines of history, planning, archaeology, architecture, architectural history, or other historic preservation-related disciplines such as cultural geography or cultural anthropology.
B. Three (3) of the jointly selected member shall be selected from the following categories:

  1. One (1) member of the Helena/Lewis and Clark Consolidated Planning Board;
  2. One (1) member of the Helena Area Chamber of Commerce;
  3. One (1) property owner located either in an Historic District or who owns property listed on the National Register of Historic Places;
  4. One (1) realtor or member of the Helena Business improvement District.

C. Two (2) at-large members to reside outside the Helena City limits, but within the jurisdictional area of the Commission to be appointed by the Lewis and Clark County Commissioners who may, in the discretion of the County Commissioners, be employed by or hold public office in. the County.
D. One (1) at-large member to reside within the Helena City limits to be appointed by the City Commission who may, in the discretion of the City Commission, be employed by or hold public office in the City.
E. Any citizen appointee may be removed from office by a majority vote of the governing body(ies) of the entity(ies) appointing such appointee. In the case of joint appointees, each governing body shall have one vote.

The terms of the Commission members who are officers of any governmental agency represented on the Commission shall be co-extensive with their respective terms of office to which they have been elected or appointed; the terms of other members shall be two (2) years, except that the terms of the first members appointed shall be fixed by agreement and rule of the governing bodies represented on the Commission for one (1) or two (2) years in order that the minimum number of terms shall expire in any year.
Vacancies occurring on the Commission of official members and by death or resignation of citizen members shall be filled for the unexpired term by the entity(ies) having appointed them.

The Helena/Lewis & Clark County Historic Preservation Commission participates in a support program for local historic preservation funded by the National Park Service and managed by the Montana State Historical Society. The "CLG" program, by offering a small annual grant and access to guidance and advice from the state preservation office, helps the H/L&CCHPC conduct its work.

"Certified Local Government" program of the National Park Service.