1 Collyer Lane, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
Phone: 908-204-3001; Fax: 908-204-3015; Website:
Acceptance of the Friends of the Kennedy Martin-Stelle Farmstead
2006 Annual Report
WHEREAS, pursuant to Ordinance #1775 adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Bernards on March 29, 2005, authorizing a lease agreement with the Friends of the Kennedy-Martin-Steele Farmstead, Inc. for a 4.397 acre tract known as Block 185, Lot 20.03, King George Road, Basking Ridge; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to said lease, and N.J.S.A. 40A:12-14(c) the Friends of the Kennedy Martin-Steele Farmstead, Inc., must submit an annual report to the Township setting out in detail the progress of the buildings preservation, restoration, renovations or operations and the progress of all fund-raising activities and grant applications, the proposed use for the buildings upon commencement of operation, the occupancy and utilization of the buildings during the preceding year, the activities of the Tenant undertaken in furtherance of the public purpose for which the leasehold was granted, the approximate value of cost, if any, of such activities in furtherance of such purpose and an affirmation of the continued tax exempt status of the Tenant pursuant to both State and federal law.
WHEREAS, the 2006 annual report has been submitted as required.
NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, by the Township Committee of the Township of Bernards that 2006 Annual Report of the Friends of the Kennedy Martin-Steele Farmstead be accepted as submitted.
Agenda and Date Voted: 02/13/2007CERTIFICATION
I hereby certify this is a true and exact copy of a resolution adopted by the Bernards Township Committee on 02/13/2007.
Denise Szabo, Municipal Clerk
Friends of the Kennedy-Martin-Stelle Farmstead
Annual Report For 2006
January 16, 2007
In 2006 the Friends of the Kennedy-Martin-Stelle Farmstead progressed significantly toward making the Farmstead a cultural-arts center for our community.
Preservation: The English Barn is now capable of being preserved with normal maintenance; the last work was completed in the Summer when the exterior siding was painted. By the end of January 2007 the Farm House’s will also be capable of being preserved with normal maintenance with just two exceptions – the exterior will be painted in the Spring when weather permits, and the windows will be preserved as soon a funding can be obtained by a Friends initiated grant application. In February 2007 a new heating and air condition system will be installed using funds from the $80,000 pledged by the Township. The Friends and the Township Engineer are working to arrange for installation of a durable tarpaulin on the Wagon House roof to prevent further deterioration due to water damage. Because the $440,000 NJ Historic Trust funding was granted to the Township, not to the Friends, the Township has been performing the scheduling, administration and oversight of the use of these funds. The Township Engineer has effectively kept the Friends intimately involved in all aspects of planning for and oversight of this work.
Cultural Arts Partnering Efforts: The Friends conducted tours and interviews with all the major cultural arts organizations in our area to identify appropriate partners for developing and administering cultural arts programs and adaptive uses. This exploratory process focused on demonstrated competence in cultural arts activities, and on involving local organizations, schools and scout troops in use of Farmstead buildings to foster their own cultural arts pursuits. Indications of interest and competence are very encouraging.
Master Plan for KMS Farmstead & Farmstead Park -- As a member of the Township’s Recreation, Parks and Pathways Committee (RP&PC) John Campbell chaired a subcommittee which produced an integrated master plan for the KMS Farmstead and the contiguous 32 Farmstead Park. This plan is now being reviewed by the entire RP&PC for submission to the Township Committee.
Archaeology Grant -- The Friends’ grant application to Somerset County in April produced a grant for $13,346 for the archaeological survey of the entire four acre Farmstead tract. The site work has been completed by Hunter Research Inc. Their final report will identify archaeologically sensitive areas to be considered in future land use planning for the Farmstead tract.
English Barn Floor Grant Application -- In September the Friends applied to the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation Preservation Fund for $92,000 to install in the English Barn a concrete-on-crushed-stone sub floor to be covered by a wood plank floor. In only two and a half weeks we prepared a high quality application. As testimony to its excellence, we received approval from The State Historic Preservation Office to go-ahead with the project, if the grant were successful. We did not get the grant. There were 175 applicants and just ten grants were awarded.
Grant Request Plans -- Plans are now underway to prepare a grant application to be submitted to Somerset County in April of 2007 which may include, among other work, the English Barn Floor and preservation of the Farm House windows.
Proposed Use for the Buildings Upon Commencement of Operation
It is the vision of the Friends Kennedy-Martin-Stelle (Friends) that the Farmstead will be used primarily as an educational resource and a venue for community cultural-arts which may include flexible performance space for music, theater and dance, classes and workshops, studios for painters, potters and sculptors, and exhibit space for art shows. Other complimentary uses may include space for public and organizational meetings, parties, wedding festivities, etc. We look forward to crossover activities that will involve people predominantly interested in cultural arts becoming exposed to activities in the Township’s contiguous 32 acre Farmstead Park, and that will attract users of the park to explore the cultural potential of the Farmstead.
The lease agreement between the Friends of the KMS Farmstead and the Township specifies that the tenant shall proceed in a diligent and prompt manner to meet the following target dates as set forth at V-1 in the Preservation Plan:
Phase I work needs to be completed as soon as possible, preferably within one year and no longer than one more winter season. The concerns in this category address the building ability’s to remain standing and viable as structures capable of being preserved and treated.
Phase II work needs to be completed shortly after the immediate work. This period should be no longer than one or two years from now. These work items address issues related to structural deterioration and building enclosure…..that should be corrected as soon as possible. The goal for these work items is to arrest active deterioration caused by the overstressing of structural components and ingress of water and moisture. (It is important to note that the building variously called the Piggery or Cow Shed is not included in work plans and schedules set forth in the Preservation Plan.)
English Barn Phases I & II -- All English Barn Phase I and Phase II work was completed in the Summer of 2006, when the exterior siding was painted.
Farm House Phases I & II : The NJ Historic Trust’s $440,000 grant to the Township (accepted by the Township via Ordinance #1788 – 4/12/05), by the end of January 2007 will have been used to repair the foundation and sill plates, shore up first-floor support beams, remove the stone patio on the south side of the house, rebuild the brick and stone stoop on the north side of the house, re-grade soil on three sides of the building to improve drainage, analyze the disturbed soil by archaeological experts, repoint three chimneys, remove late 19th century plaster and lath from the dining room ceiling, remove exterior vinyl siding, repair the underlying original-siding, remove 20th century sky lights, replace the 20th century double window in the kitchen with two appropriate windows, repair the front and back exterior doors, repair soffits, install a cedar shingle roof, and reinstall the lightning rods. The siding will be painted in the spring of 2007 as weather permits.
This work will complete almost all aspects of Phase I and Phase II work (necessary to make the Farm House’s capable of being preserved with normal maintenance). The only exception is the preservation or replacement of the windows. This work was originally included in the request for quote submitted to qualified construction companies. Actual bids more than doubled the $440,000 grant that we believed would cover all Phase I & II work on the Farm House and Phase I work on the Wagon House as well. (This escalation of costs was typical across the entire historic preservation spectrum due to the demand for building materials due to Hurricane Katrina and rapid economic growth in China, and to sharp rise in gasoline prices.) Therefore, it was necessary to eliminate Farm House window work. The Friends plans to submit a grant application for repair/preservation of the Farm House windows to Somerset County in April of 2007.
Funds from the $80,000 pledged by the Township for bricks and mortar work (Ordinance #1716 – 3/10/04 to preserve the Farm House and Wagon House, and to paint the English Barn), were used to remove the defunct furnace and associated asbestos insulation. The Township is awarding a contract to Speer Air of Denville to install a new heating and air conditioning system by the end of February, 2007. The Friends Trustees members of the Township staff are now considering how to optimize use of the remaining Township pledged funds.
Wagon House Phase I: We believed that the NJ Historic Trust’s $440,000 grant to the Township (accepted by the Township via Ordinance #1788 – 4/12/05) would be sufficient to complete all Phase I work on the Wagon House. This work was originally included in the request for quote submitted to qualified construction companies. Actual bids more than doubled the $440,000 grant. As a result all work on the Wagon House had to be deferred until future funding can be obtained. In the mean time the Friends and the Township Engineer are working to arrange for installation of a durable tarpaulin to be installed on the roof to prevent further deterioration due to water damage.
Township Cooperation with Friends -- It is important to note that the $440,000 NJ Historic Trust funding was granted to the Township, not to the Friends. Therefore the Township has been performing the scheduling, administration and oversight of the use of these funds. However, the Township Engineer has effectively kept the Friends intimately involved in all aspects of planning for and oversight of this work. We look forward to continuing the excellent cooperation between the Township and the Friends. It will be the Friends responsibility to obtain the funds necessary for further preservation and adaptive use work on the Farmstead buildings, and to oversee all planning, scheduling, and administration for the use of these future funds.
Activities to Further the Public Purpose for Which the Leasehold Was Granted
Cultural Arts Partnering Efforts --The Friends have conducted tours and interviews to identify appropriate partners for developing and administering cultural arts adaptive uses for the Farmstead. These interactions have included Trilogy Repertory Theater, Raritan Art Association, Somerset Art Association, Watchung Arts Center, Montgomery Arts Center and Myhelan, a cultural arts organization in Long Valley. We are continuing aggressively with this process. We are focusing not only on demonstrated competence in cultural arts activities, but also on fund raising and revenue creation potential for supporting their proposed uses of Farmstead facilities, and on the need for creating opportunities to involve local organizations, schools and scout troops in use of Farmstead buildings to foster their own cultural arts pursuits. Indications competence and interest are very encouraging.
KMS Farmstead & Farmstead Park Master Plan – For two years John Campbell has served on the Township’s Recreation, Parks and Pathways Committee (RP&PC). This committee is responsible for making recommendations concerning the planning and administration of the contiguous 32 acre Farmstead Park. During 2006 he chaired a subcommittee which produced an integrated master plan for the KMS Farmstead and Farmstead Park. The contents of this plan were approved by the RP&PC on 1.8.07. The subcommittee is now working with Messrs Wright and Messina to establish a project completion schedule for the development of Farmstead Park. It is the RP&PC’s objective to submit a recommended master plan and implementation schedule to the Township committee in April of 2007.
Fund-Raising Activities and Grant Applications
Archaeological Survey Grant -- The Friends submitted a grant application to Somerset County on 4/1/06 seeking $13,346 for the a reconnaissance level archaeological survey of the entire four acre Farmstead tract. This grant was awarded to the Friends to conduct site-specific background research examining existing documents, and to conduct a site visit to identify for further exploration, areas of archaeological sensitivity that potentially contain significant information about the Farmstead and site occupants. The site work has been completed by Hunter Research Inc. and they are now preparing their final report. It will provide information on the relative archaeological sensitivity of various areas of the Farmstead tract to be considered in future land use planning there.
English Barn Floor Grant Request -- The Friends submitted a grant application to the Lowe’s Charitable and Educational Foundation Preservation Fund in a grant process administered by The National Trust for Historic Places. We asked for $92,000 to install in the English Barn a concrete-on-crushed-stone sub-floor to be covered by a wood-plank floor. Due to delay in publicizing the grant opportunity, we prepared the request in only 18 days, an impressive accomplishment considering its detailed requirements. As testimony to the quality of the application, we received approval from The State Historic Preservation Office to go-ahead with the project, if the grant were approved. There were 175 applicants; only ten grants were awarded and we were not one of them. The odds were slim and getting rebuffed is much more the norm than getting approved.
This work is not wasted. Plans are now underway to prepare a grant application to be submitted to Somerset County in April of 2007 which may include work on the English Barn Floor as well as repair/preservation of the Farm House windows.
Tax Exempt Status
The Friends of the KMS Farmstead have achieved tax exempt status under both state and federal law as noted below:
9/30/05 determination that the FOF is exempt from Federal income tax under section
501c3 of the Internal Revenue Code. Contributions to FOF are deductible. FOF is also qualified to receive tax deductible bequests, devises, transfers and gifts.
NJ Division of Consumer Affairs officially notified the FOF that its status as a New Charities Registration would become effective on 12/21/05. The FOF was assigned New Charities Registration Number CH2751900.
The NJ Department of the Treasury Division of Revenue notified the FOF that it is exempt from New Jersey sales and use tax on purchases of goods, meals, services, room occupancies and admissions that are directly related to the purposes of the organization, except purchases of energy and utility services, and from collecting sales tax on occasional fundraising sales.
John B. Campbell – Board of Trustees President
Friends of the Kennedy-Martin-Stelle Farmstead