The CPC has 3 responsibilities: 1) to study the needs, possibilities, and resources of the community with regards to community preservation, 2) to accept project proposals from the community and 3) make recommendations to Town Meeting for funding.
The bylaw will dictate whether the optional members of the CPC will be elected or appointed, and by which authority.
Each community that adopts the Community Preservation Act is required to establish a Community Preservation Committee (CPC) to administer the program. The CPC is created by Town Meeting with at least 5 required members: Conservation Commission, Planning Board, Historical Commission, Recreation Commission and Housing Authority AND up to 4 optional members
The CPA requires that communities spend, or set aside for future spending, a minimum of 10% of their annual CPA revenues for each of the three following categories: open space/recreation, historic preservation, and affordable housing. The remaining 70% of the funds can be spent as the town sees fit.
Property owners with current property tax exemptions are proportionately exempt from the surcharge. Other property owners such as those with low income and senior property owners with low or moderate income can choose to be completely exempt.
By funding some large projects through Community Preservation Act funds and taking advantage of the state contribution — we can help relieve our budgets by freeing general tax revenues for other purposes.
As proposed, the surcharge would raise about $2.0 to $2.2 million annually, assuming a state match of approximately 30 to 40 percent.
Large CPA projects, while important, rarely get regular, dependable funding from the Town’s municipal budgeting process. To maintain and foster a vibrant, desirable community CPA projects support the physical and aesthetic characteristics that people look for when choosing a strong community in which to live.
CPA will help preserve Burlington’s historic buildings. CPA will help support affordable housing. CPA will help protect and create open and recreational space. CPA will stretch local tax dollars by providing matching state funds and grant dollars. CPA could free up money in the general budget for schools, fire stations, road repair, and more.
The CPA is a state law that enables cities and towns to create a dedicated fund for important projects that can greatly impact a community’s character and quality of life. The CPA is a dedicated account for the good things we know we should be doing to save our town and its history.