Educating Your Community on CPA Exemptions

April 2008 (updated August 2016): Do you suspect that many eligible taxpayers are not aware of your community’s low/moderate-income CPA surcharge exemptions? Over 90 communities adopted CPA with the low/moderate income surcharge exemption, which means that properties that are owned and occupied by low-income persons and low or moderate-income seniors are not subject to the CPA surcharge. However, because taxpayers need to submit an application each year to apply for the exemption, some communities have taken extra steps to educate taxpayers on eligibility and the application procedures.

The most common promotion method that these communities use is to include an insert in the property tax bills and have extra copies on hand at the Assessor's office. This type of tax insert can be very helpful, particularly if the community is new to CPA and sending out tax bills that contain the CPA surcharge for the first time. Below are links to some sample flyers, which can be used to create a tax insert for your community.

The legislature passed legislation in 2016 that made two changes to the exemption procedure, and you'll want to include this information on your flyer (the samples below were produced prior to 2016).  The legislation sets submission deadlines for taxpayers who want to apply for the low income/moderate income senior exemption in communities that have adopted CPA with that exemption. The new deadline, April 1st, corresponds with the same deadline used by municipalities for filing abatements for property taxes. The legislation also provides a process by which taxpayers can appeal the decision of the assessors on their exemption application and cites the privacy laws that govern public access to inspection of those applications.

Please note: The income limits for the low-income and low/moderate income senior exemption varies by community. To create a tax insert flyer for your community, you will need to use the proper income limits.

Further Resources...

    >> A list of Affordable Housing Income Limits by community

    >> Sample CPA tax bill inserts for Boxford, Dunstable, Goshen, LittletonSalem and Boxborough