The Pittsfield Community Preservation Committee will hold a public hearing / iBerkshires.com

PITTSFIELD, Mass. – The Community Preservation Committee has voted to hold its annual Preservation Plan Review Public Hearing on Monday, Nov. 7, in Room 203 at City Hall. The hearing will also be broadcast on Pittsfield Community Television.

The purpose of this hearing is to review priorities for planning work since the Community Preservation Act was passed in Pittsfield, to receive feedback from the public on the planning work they have done, and to consider how funds have been used in recent years. years.

The CPA was adopted in Massachusetts in 2000 to “allow a locally supported fund supplemented by partial state matching that could be used for projects involving historic preservation, open space, outdoor recreation, and housing affordable”.

Applications for eligibility are due November 18. A project’s eligibility for APC funding is determined by the Community Preservation Act, not the committee.

“So the first step being eligibility, and it’s not whether the city likes the project, or whether it’s within cost targets, it just doesn’t meet the requirements of the CPA legislation for fit in as historic preservation, community housing or recreation and an open space project,” said city planner CJ Hoss.

CPA funds in 2022 went to the Berkshire Athenaeum for digitizing tax and vital records, Berkshire Theater Group for garage facade restoration, Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity to cover three projects, and other organizations. A full list can be found here.

The second step is to prepare a more in-depth funding request in which the committee will usually share the scoring criteria with the applicants so that they can craft their request based on these criteria.

The CPA’s funding budget is based on a tax surtax that has been collected, and then on state correspondence. At the beginning of each fiscal year, the committee presents an estimated budget of what the committee would collect from property tax bills and state correspondence, but at the end they are unsure because things change.

The committee needs to update the actual numbers, and then next month it should get the state game. The state match is questionable because you never know how much of the state surplus is going to be allocated.

The state game could be bigger, but based on June estimates, the city would receive $172,747. Combined with local fundraising and reserve funds of $450,000 carried over from last year, the committee estimates it will have about $818,435.44 that can potentially be allocated to projects, Hoss said.

In other business, the committee voted to elect Danielle Steinmann as chair after serving as vice-chair for many years.

Steinmann’s role as Vice President is Alexandra Groff, who has been a member since fall 2016.

With a lot of new blood on the committee, members also discussed the possibility of doing a survey early in the next calendar year to inform the 2023 funding cycle. This will be discussed at future meetings.

Key words: PCA,

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