Massachusetts has so many amazing maintained trails, parks and historic sites across our communities. Does your town have beautiful, public community spaces outdoors for everyone to enjoy? Are you aware that you might be helping maintain them without even knowing it?

Over half of Massachusetts towns have a real estate tax surcharge under the CPA—or Community Preservation Act, that goes toward the support of public open spaces, walking trails, dog parks, recreational facilities and even more.

Each town appoints a board to oversee the Community Preservation Fund. If you have an idea for your community, as a citizen of your town, you have the ability to take action and lead your own committee to direct those funds into a project by entering into a public private partnership with the board and doing some fundraising of your own to boost the small tax fund.

So next time you see that mysterious fee, you can feel confident that it’s enriching your community and making it a better place to live.

What are some of the community spaces you’re proud of in your town?

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