The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, January 13, 2006


CPA project applications due January 25

Preliminary applications for projects to be funded by monies allocated through the Community Preservation Act (CPA) are due January 25. Individuals, committees, as well as non-profit and town-sponsored groups, are eligible to apply.

The CPA, adopted in Carlisle in 2001, levies a 2% surcharge on property tax, which to date has been matched dollar for dollar by the state. To make use of these funds, applicants must adhere to the guidelines for community preservation. CPA funds may be used to acquire and protect open space, preserve historic buildings and landscapes, for public recreation, or to create and maintain affordable housing.

On January 5 the Community Preservation Committee (CPC) reviewed last year's accomplishments and looked ahead to new projects that may benefit from CPA funding.

All CPC recommendations presented at last year's annual meeting were approved. Some of these involved restoration of the Historical Society's barn on Concord Street, planning the creation of affordable housing and a recreation field on the Benfield Land, funding a study of accessory apartments, and ugrading town-owned trails. Applications for fiscal year 2007 are starting to come in. Ideas include: development of a recreational field at Foss Farm, a proposal to bury overhead electrical wires on the Town Common, further decisions on use of the Benfield Land, and creation of a historical resources survey.

Plans are also underway for the Bruce Freeman Rail Trail, a bike and pedestrian trail that starts in Lowell and stretches east into Cambridge. A tiny parcel of land in Carlisle is part of this trail system — roughly 2/10 mile of land, near the intersection of Routes 225 and 27 at the Westford border. Survey work would be needed to determine the land's actual size and location relative to town borders.The Board of Selectmen voted to support this proposal at their meeting on January 10, and appointed Al Cameron and Deb Belanger to a task force to work on the project.

Ultimately, the town will decide how all CPA funds are distributed at the Annual Town Meeting in the spring.

"This is the most flexible money the town has, to some degree, as long as it fits these purposes," says Caren Ponty, the committee's chair. The Community Preservation Committee now meets the first Thursday of every month at 7 p.m. in Town Hall. To obtain an application, contact the Board of Selectmen's office.

2006 The Carlisle Mosquito