Main Street Winchester once again nationally accredited

Winchester’s Main Street program is once again a nationally-accredited program.

Main Street Winchester Executive Director Rachel Alexander said the accreditation was renewed in February from the Kentucky Main Street program.

Winchester was also one of 25 Kentucky comminuties to be accredited by the National Main Street Center as well, according to the Kentucky Heritage Council.

Alexander said Winchester’s program has been accredited since 2016.

“We have to be re-certified every year,” she said. “This year I sent a packet to Frankfort that was an inch and a half thick.”

The documentation submitted covers 10 areas including commitment of the local board, re-investment statistics, showing there is a historical preservation ethic and others, she said. To be accredited, programs must score at least seven points in each category.

This year, Winchester scored its best cumulative score with a 92, she said.

The accreditation process is important, she said, because it opens the doors to some grants and help from the state office.

According to a release from the Kentucky Heritage Council, Winchester’s Main Street program reported more than $7.3 million of new investments and 60 new jobs during 2018.

Statewide, KHC said main street programs generated more than $91 million for the state economy and 1,215 new jobs.

Of the revenue, $73.7 million came from private investors with the balance from local matches.