On November 8, 2016, voters in Springfield will have the opportunity to support the Community Preservation Act. If passed, this will set up a fund in the city dedicated to Historic Preservation, Open Space/Recreation, and Housing.
Historic Preservation has taken a back seat in the city for far too long. We have a tremendous amount of historic properties, but many are neglected, and have been neglected for decades. Unfortunately, Springfield has had perennial budget constraints for decades, and historic preservation is always put on the back burner in favor of things like public safety, employee raises, and even deferred pension liabilities.
The CPA would create a separate stream of revenue from a small 1.5% surcharge on property taxes. For the average house (valued at $134,806), it comes to approximately $10 per year, or less than $1 per month. When everyone contributes, this raises a total of $1 million per year, and this triggers a state match which can be up to 100% per year (though in 2015 the match was about 29%).
I encourage every Springfield voter to vote yes on Question 5, for the CPA!