After Tallying the New FY2014 CPA Project Statistics, CPA Program Sees Strong Growth in Open Space Preservation

Nov. 6, 2014: Now that CPA communities have finished entering their FY2014 CPA project appropriations into the state's Community Preservation Projects database, it's clear that last year was a busy one for CPA. 

More than 900 CPA projects were approved during FY14! We were eager to see if the recent changes to the recreation portion of CPA would greatly affect spending in the other categories, particularly open space preservation. While recreation projects experienced solid growth, last year's project statistics show that open space preservation is still a popular and significant project area for CPA spending. And because of hte recent robust trust fund distributions, affordable housing and historic project numbers also continue to climb.

From FY2013 to FY2014, the acreage of land preserved with CPA funds increased by 14%, bringing the total to 21,838 acres preserved statewide since the CPA program's inception. More than 1,400 CPA-funded open space projects have been completed by municipalities.

As for CPA-funded recreation projects, last year saw a repeat of FY13's 25% increase in recreation projects funded, pushing the total number of recreation projects thus far to nearly 1,250. This increase in recreation expenditures underscores the pent-up demand among municipalities for funds to rehabilitate their outdoor recreational facilities.

The number of CPA housing and historic preservation projects also experienced steady growth. Second only to the number of open space projects funded, about 1,300 housing project have been funded thus far under CPA, supporting more than 8,500 affordable units statewide. In FY14, 1,200 units were added to the total.

The historic category still holds the title for the most CPA projects funded, with 3,627 historic preservation appropriations to date. Historic preservation projects represent nearly 50% of all CPA projects approved locally. In FY2014, this category also saw growth consistent with the previous year, representing a 13% increase. 

Overall, as of June 30, 2014, CPA has funded more than 7,500 projects in all four eligible categories. All 155 CPA communities, representing 44% of the state’s municipalities, have collectively raised more than $1.3 billion for community preservation since CPA’s inception in 2000 (total revenue combined from local CPA surcharges plus CPA Trust Fund distributions) and have used CPA funds to match and leverage an additional $790 million from other funding sources. With three new communities having adopted CPA this November 4th, we anticipate that the number of community preservation projects will to continue to grow into FY2015.

The above statistics are based on data from the state’s online projects reporting database (CP-3). Each year, CPA communities enter all projects approved in the previous fiscal year into the database. The Coalition generated the above statistics from that data.