The Circuit Court Records Preservation Program (CCRP) Grant Review Board met on 26 July 2019 at the Library of Virginia to consider records preservation grant requests from circuit courts across the commonwealth. Five voting members comprise the board: three circuit court clerks, appointed by the president of the Virginia Court Clerks’ Association; and two staff members from the Library of Virginia, currently the state archivist and a senior local records archivist. Board members meet once a year to evaluate applications. Clerks of the circuit courts are eligible to apply for funds to conserve, secure, and increase access to circuit court records. In all, 90 localities submitted 94 applications requesting a total of $1,441,194.21.
After careful evaluation and discussion of all applications, the board approved 91 grant projects totaling over $1,200,000. Eighty-nine of the approved applications covered professional conservation treatment for items including deed books, will books, land tax books, marriage licenses, minute books, and plat books, housed in circuit court clerks’ offices, which suffered damage from use, age, pests, water, or previous non-professional repairs. The remaining two grants funded records reformatting and a security system.
The following are a few of the items that received grant funding:
The Library of Virginia’s Government Records Division administers the CCRP. A $1.50 recordation fee on land instruments recorded in the circuit court clerks’ offices funds the program. The CCRP provides resources to preserve and make accessible Virginia’s permanent circuit court records. Since 1992, the CCRP has awarded over 1,500 preservation grants totaling over $22 million dollars.
–Greg Crawford, Local Records Program Manager