By Peter Goonan
SPRINGFIELD — State Sen. Eric Lesser and state Rep. Jose Tosado have added their support for Question 5 on the Nov. 8 ballot, that if approved by voters, will create a property tax surcharge in Springfield dedicated to historic preservation and promotion of open space and recreation.
The support of the ballot question was announced Monday by SpringfieldCPAdvocacy, a citizen-based committee advocating for passage Question 5.
In Springfield, a 1.5 percent surcharge is proposed on the annual property tax levy for residential and business properties. The proposal exempts the first $100,000 in property valuation from the surcharge.
"The Community Preservation Act has helped numerous communities across the Commonwealth preserve and improve their history, maintain their open spaces, and create new places for recreation," Lesser said. "The CPA process is driven by the people who live within the communities the law seeks to preserve, and is a great demonstration of local partnerships with the state. I strongly urge Springfield voters to vote 'yes' on Question 5."
Lesser, D-Longmeadow, represents a district that includes a section of Springfield.
Tosado, D-Springfield, representing the 9th Hampden District in Springfield, also praised the Community Preservation Act.
"Springfield has a proud history that is worth preserving," Tosado said. "The funds from the CPA will help repair and preserve the City of Firsts during this crucial time – I endorse a "yes" vote on Question 5, and suggest that those who wish to see a balanced rebirth of Springfield do the same."
Robert McCarroll, president of CPAdvocacy, said it is "especially heartening to receive support of CPA from two proven, dedicated public servants who represent Springfield at the state level,."
"Their support is rooted in a fundamental understanding of the benefits CPA can deliver to Springfield and the neighborhood communities in which their constituents live and work." McCarroll said.
CPA has been adopted in 161 Massachusetts municipalities and is being considered in by voters in November and other communities including Holyoke, South Hadley, Pittsfield, and Boston.