Friday, March 12, 2004
Land purchase motion for TM
The motion under Article 1, CPA Authorization, to be moved at the Special
Town Meeting on Tuesday, March 23, is the result of hours of debate
and compromise by town boards on the purchase, use and development of
the Benfield Parcel A. Briefly, the five-page motion asks if the town
will vote to approve the following terms (See definitions and background
information under "Q&As..." this page.):
• To appropriate $2 million for the acquisition of 45 acres (Parcel A) off South Street.
• To finance the purchase with $500,000 from the Community Preservation Act (CPA) Fund and a $1.5 million one-year Bond Anticipation Note (BAN) on April 1, 2004. In year two, to expend $300,000 from the CPA Fund and borrow $1.2 million in the form of a second one-year BAN. In year three, to borrow $1.2 million to be repaid over ten years using up to 75% of CPA revenues.
• To designate 26 acres of the interior as the Open Space Parcel, and the remaining 19 acres for recreational uses and community housing purposes which contribute to the town's obligations under Chapter 40B, providing that there will be no more than one athletic field and 26 housing units on Parcel A.
• To establish a Parcel A Planning Task Force to develop a Parcel A Master Plan for the 19-acre portion, which includes as its objectives: (1) the development of housing which contributes to the town's 40B obligations and is not immediately visible from South Street; and (2) development of an athletic field that maintains, to the extent feasible, the rural vista from South Street. The Master Plan is to be presented to the Annual or Fall Town Meeting in 2005.
• To establish a fallback plan, should the 2005 Town Meeting reject the Parcel A Master Plan, which will deed-restrict the back 26 acres for open space, 5.23 acres of the front parcel for active recreation, and the remaining 14 acres, more or less, for community housing, all development to be subject to Town Meeting approval.
• To permit the town to apply for and expend ant grants, matching funds, or reimbursements to defray the cost of acquisition of Parcel A.
Two additional motions under Article 1 ask the town to approve $50,000 to defray the expenses of the planning process and $15,000 for administrative expenses incurred by the CPA Committee.
A third motion recognizes the many years of service and contributions of long-term town resident Ben Benfield.
© 2004 The