To the Editor,
Sustainable Watertown encourages Watertown to vote for the Community Preservation Act (CPA), Question 5, when you vote Tuesday. Question 5 is on the back of your ballot.
The CPA will allow residents to Invest in Watertown with matching funds from the State to be spent as the community decides on improving parks, trails, and recreation; veterans memorials and historic sites; and to create more affordable housing. We would receive about $2 million a year. The state has already given out $542 million.
One-hundred-sixty-one (161) other cities and towns in Massachusetts have been benefitting by the millions of dollars since the program started more than a decade ago. There would be a 2 percent surcharge on your real estate tax bill. The cost is affordable, about $124/year per family with exemptions for low income and moderate and low income seniors. If you receive a tax abatement or exemption you will pay a reduced amount for CPA as well. The tax rate does not go up.
The Watertown community would benefit and recommendations to the town would be made right here by a special committee. How better to build community and benefit all the people?
Question 5 is supported by all of our state legislators, many Councilors that we know of, and School Committee members, including a Watertown Strong Schools founder, Kendra Medville Foley, current School Committee Chair, John Portz, and former chair, Eileen Hsu Balzer. There is no conflict between school building in the future and the CPA. In fact, existing schools can benefit with CPA investments.
Sustainable Watertown is proud to support Question 5.
For the Steering Committee