What is the Community Preservation Act?
The Community Preservation Act was signed into law in 2000 and accepted by Mendon in 2002. The Act creates a fund to be used for open space protection, historic preservation, affordable housing, and outdoor recreation.
Funds are raised through a 3% surcharge on property taxes. (The first $100,000 of residential value is exempt)
In addition, the state contributes matching funds from surcharges on real estate transactions at the state's Registries of Deeds. This state match is up to 100% of the local funds collected.
Mendon has participated in the MA Community Preservation Act (CPA) program for 16 years, collecting $3,794,412 through the CPA surcharge and receiving $2,588,881 from the MA State CPA Trust Fund. Mendon also directly received $1,120,201 in grant funds and benefitted from another $814,666 of funding though collaboration with other organizations on CPA projects.
Allowable Uses of CPA Funds
The CPA provides new funding sources, which can be used to address four community concerns:
- Acquisition and preservation of open space for passive and active recreation
- Creation and support of affordable housing
- Acquisition and preservation of historic buildings and landscapes
- Active recreation projects
A minimum of 10% of the annual revenues of the fund must be used or set aside for the areas 1-3 listed above. The remaining 70% can be allocated for any combination of the allowed uses, and for active recreation projects. 5% can also be set aside for administration and evaluation of projects. This gives each community the opportunity to determine its priorities, plan for its future, and have the funds to make those plans happen.
For questions call the Town Administrator (508) 473-2312 or e-mail the Community Preservation Committee Chair.
Applying for CPA Funding
All applications for CPA projects need to be approved by the Community Preservation Committee (CPC). If approved, they then need to be approved by a majority vote at a town meeting. If you have a project idea, contact the CPC Chair or attend a CPC meeting to make sure the project meets the CPA guidelines.
A detailed information packet on the CPA, guidelines for submission and application documents for the CPA funds are available at the Mendon Town Hall in the Town Clerk’s Office, the Taft Public Library or on this website. (Click the "Forms" link at the top left of this page)
The Community Preservation Committee reviews CPA Applications requesting CPA funding for projects. The committee determines if the projects meet the CPA guidelines and if the projects reflect the goals in the Mendon Open Space and Recreation Plan, the Mendon Master Plan and other town documents.
The committee encourages projects that include the use of volunteer time and outside grant funding or donations. If the committee approves the project, it is then brought to a town meeting and requires a majority vote to allow use of the expenditure of CPA funds for the project. The Committee receives applications on a rolling basis.
Sample of Mendon CPA Projects
HISTORICAL Funds have been used for various projects, such as restoring hundreds of town records that date back to the 1600s, including an original copy of the Declaration of Independence, and fixing a town hall drainage problem and repairing the damp and moldy vault, where the records were being stored.
RECREATION Funds have been used for recreation projects, such as building the Veterans' Field off Millville Street, a multipurpose fields with a walking path around the property, and renovating the playground, basketball, and tennis courts at Memorial Park.
OPEN SPACE Funds have also protected open space for passive recreation, such as Meadow Brook Woods, which includes the 9-acre Inman Pond, entrance located on Park Street. Currently, the Mendon Boy Scouts and the Trustees of Reservations are working with the Mendon Land Use Committee to clear trails through the property and clean out an invasive non-native aquatic water chestnut weed from the Inman Pond, so it is a "work in progress." People interested in volunteering on these projects should visit the Land Use Committee page and send an email requesting more information.
AFFORDABLE HOUSING Funds have also been used to fund a part-time Affordable Housing Coordinator who is working to plan options to provide affordable housing to people who have been pushed out of Mendon, such as senior citizens downsizing, younger Mendon residents starting out on new careers and employees who work in Mendon who would like to live in the community where they work.
Up to fiscal year 2016, which is 13 years of CPA funding, the total matching funds the Town of Mendon has received from the Massachusetts State Community Preservation Trust Fund is $2,034,522. In addition, over this time period, Mendon has been able to take advantage of $1,020,967 in additional grant funding and donations and benefitted from another $1,025,000 of funding through collaboration with other organizations on CPA projects. All the grant funding was possible, because Mendon had the CPA funds to put up as matching funds towards each grant. The CPA funding has also spurred thousands of hours of volunteer time towards Mendon projects.
Up to fiscal year 2016, the total of funding from the Massachusetts State Community Preservation Trust Fund and grants is over $4 million. In this same time period, the Town of Mendon collected $2,537,560 in revenues through the CPA surcharge.
|Anne Mazar||Land Use Comm. and CPC Chair (June 2021)|
|Michael Ammendolia||Con Com Representative (June 2021)|
|Dan Byer||Park Commissioner Representative (June 2020)|
|Peter Denton||Housing Authority Representative (June 2021)|
|Barry Iadarola||Planning Board Representative (May 2020)|
|Lawney Tinio||Select Board Representative (May 2020)|
|Michael Goddard||Historical Commission Representative (June 2020)|