Community Preservation Act (CPA)

Description

The Community Preservation Act (CPA), as enabled through Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 44B, was adopted by Ayer voters in April 2001.  The Ayer CPA currently receives funds through a local property tax surcharge of 1% and a variable state match of up to 100% of the local receipts.  In the first two years of the program, Ayer’s local property tax surcharge was 3% - it was reduced to 1% by ballot vote in Fiscal Year 2003. Ayer adopted the CPA surcharge with exemptions for low income households and low/moderate senior households.  Since adoption, the Ayer CPA has raised over $1.6M.   

The law requires CPA to limit funding to four general types of projects:  community housing, historic preservation, open space, and recreation, with 10% minimum spending requirements for each of the first three categories. 

In order to appropriate CPA funds, Town meeting must act on a recommendation of the CPAC, a nine-member committee with representatives appointed by various boards and committees.

Guidelines and Online Resources

Visit the Department of Revenue for a collection of CPA resources.

Community Preservation Act - Full Text

Visit the Community Preservation Coalition for the full text of the CPA legislation and other resources.

Visit the Massachsusetts General Court to view M.G.L. Chapter 44B (Massachusetts Community Preservation Act) in their online archive.