At the 2016 general election, 66.5% of the citizens of Chelsea voted to adopt the provisions of the Community Preservation Act and impose a 1.5 percent surcharge on residential and commercial properties with exemptions for low and moderate income homeowners as well as an exemption on the first $100,000 of property value. On December 19, 2016, the Chelsea City Council voted to establish by Ordinance the Community Preservation Committee to make recommendations on expenditures authorized by the Community Preservation Act. The recommendations of the Committee are sent to the City Council where the amounts can be affirmed, rejected, or lowered. Funding recommendations may not be increased.
The Committee has been appointed and has been organizing itself to accept applications from the community for the available funds. Prior to accepting any applications and awarding any funds, the Committee must solicit input from the community and create a Community Development Plan that reflects the community’s priorities. By statute, 10% of any funds received must be reserved for each of the three funding categories: open space and recreation, historic preservation, and affordable housing. Of the remaining 70%, up to 5% of total receipts can be used for administrative costs. Any remaining funds from the 70% may be used in any of the three allowed categories.
During Fiscal Year 2017, $545,093.06 was received by the city from the property tax surcharge. The Committee wishes to use $25,000 of these funds to hire a consultant to develop the Community Preservation Plan and to create an application as well as develop and document the application process. This amount is less than the 5% that is allowed for administrative expenses. It is anticipated that this consultant will complete this work over the summer and that the Committee will begin to accept applications for funding in the Fall.
In addition to the FY17 funds, the Community Preservation Trust Fund has received in FY18: a state match on the FY17 funds of $106,283; interest earned in FY17 of $8,176.39; and interest on past due amounts of $530.74. FY18 revenues from the tax surcharge are anticipated to be on the order of $600,000.
|Judith Dyer||Conservation Commission Representative|
|Juan Vega||Housing Authority Representative|
|William (Tuck) Willis||Planning Board Representative|
|Ronald Robinson||Historical Commission Representative|
|Bea Cravatta||Cultural Council Representative|