Sudbury Vision

The Place for Sudbury's Citizen Reporters

Massachusetts Senate passes Community Preservation Act Reform Legislation

On May 24 the Massachusetts Senate passed the CPA reform legislation (HB 765) 38-0.  The Massachusetts House passed similar legislation 155-0 on April 24.  

(Begin quote)

The Senate's CPA budget amendment provides a one-time appropriation of $5 million in funding for the statewide CPA Trust Fund in July 2012, while the House version grants a $25 million recurring sum from the annual state budget surplus beginning in the fall of 2013. All the other provisions of the CPA legislation are the same in both the Senate and House versions, including the changes to the recreation rules for CPA projects.

During June, a six-member conference committee will work to resolve the differences in the CPA funding between the Senate and House budgets.

(End quote) from from the Community Preservation Coalition here:  This article includes a link to a State House News article.

The amendment:

1) Allows the use of CPF (Community Preservation Funds) for rehabilitation of existing recreational facilities as well as those facilities acquired or built with CPF.

2) Attempts to increase the state match to 75% using new fees assessed by the registrar of deeds ($50 max) and the assistant recorder ($25 max).  As the legislation specifically states, 'In the event that these maximum fees are reached and they are insufficient to support a 75 per cent first round match distribution pursuant to section 10, the Community Preservation Trust Fund match distribution shall be less than 75 per cent.'  There is no 'guaranteed' 75% match.  The Senate and House will resolve differences concerning further state funding, as discussed in the quoted text above.

3) Allows the use of other dedicated revenue sources (e.g. a local meals or lodging surtax) for part of the local CPA revenue which the current law requires to be paid as a property tax surcharge.

The text of the House version (H 765) is available here:

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Comment by Bulldog Friday on July 23, 2012 at 9:05am

Just an update.

The Governor signed the Commonwealth's budget, including the CPA legislation, on July 9.

Quoting from the Community Preservation Coalition website:

The Governor made no amendments or vetoes to the CPA sections included in the budget. The legislation also included the additional $25 million in funding for the statewide CPA Trust Fund from the FY 2013 budget surplus. As we reported in our last newsletter, legislative leaders have indicated their full intention to provide $25 million from the budget surplus in future years, as well.

The entire page, with links to the complete legislation, is here:

Comment by a macentee on May 27, 2012 at 7:26pm

BD - Thanks for keeping on  top of news...some interesting developments. 

One thing for sure, CPC must start labeling state match for what it is: An additional TAX.   Not just because SJC said so with respect to previous registry surcharges, but especailly in light of the proposed leigislation which may tap surplus funds or allow the use of local meals or lodginging surtax


Speaking of local meals and lodging surtax, I just searched the 2012 Town Warrant pdf - No hits or mention; also just searched on line DOR sources of receipts - no mention


From memory werent these estimated to be above 100k when 1st came out and talk was of allocating them to OPEB?. 


Are the receipts buried in the budget?  Where?  How much?  How are they being allocated?  Dedicated source/general fund?

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