Section 5: Community preservation committee; members; recommendations
Section 5. (a) A city or town that accepts sections 3 to 7, inclusive, shall establish by ordinance or by-law a community preservation committee. The committee shall consist of not less than five nor more than nine members. The ordinance or by-law shall determine the composition of the committee, the length of its term and the method of selecting its members, whether by election or appointment or by a combination thereof. The committee shall include, but not be limited to, one member of the conservation commission established under section 8C of chapter 40 as designated by the commission, one member of the historical commission established under section 8D of said chapter 40 as designated by the commission, one member of the planning board established under section 81A of chapter 41 as designated by the board, one member of the board of park commissioners established under section 2 of chapter 45 as designated by the board and one member of the housing authority established under section 3 of chapter 121B as designated by the authority, or persons, as determined by the ordinance or by-law, acting in the capacity of or performing like duties of the commissions, board or authority if they have not been established in the city or town. If there are no persons acting in the capacity of or performing like duties of any such commission, board or authority, the ordinance or by-law shall designate those persons.
(b)(1) The community preservation committee shall study the needs, possibilities and resources of the city or town regarding community preservation, including the consideration of regional projects for community preservation. The committee shall consult with existing municipal boards, including the conservation commission, the historical commission, the planning board, the board of park commissioners and the housing authority, or persons acting in those capacities or performing like duties, in conducting such studies. As part of its study, the committee shall hold one or more public informational hearings on the needs, possibilities and resources of the city or town regarding community preservation possibilities and resources, notice of which shall be posted publicly and published for each of two weeks preceding a hearing in a newspaper of general circulation in the city or town.
(2) The community preservation committee shall make recommendations to the legislative body for the acquisition, creation and preservation of open space; for the acquisition, preservation, rehabilitation and restoration of historic resources; for the acquisition, creation, preservation, rehabilitation and restoration of land for recreational use; for the acquisition, creation, preservation and support of community housing; and for the rehabilitation or restoration of open space and community housing that is acquired or created as provided in this section; provided, however, that funds expended pursuant to this chapter shall not be used for maintenance. With respect to community housing, the community preservation committee shall recommend, whenever possible, the reuse of existing buildings or construction of new buildings on previously developed sites. With respect to recreational use, the acquisition of artificial turf for athletic fields shall be prohibited; provided, however, that any project approved by a municipality for the acquisition of artificial turf for athletic fields prior to July 1, 2012 shall be a permitted use of community preservation funding.
(3) The community preservation committee may include in its recommendation to the legislative body a recommendation to set aside for later spending funds for specific purposes that are consistent with community preservation but for which sufficient revenues are not then available in the Community Preservation Fund to accomplish that specific purpose or to set aside for later spending funds for general purposes that are consistent with community preservation.
(c) The community preservation committee shall not meet or conduct business without the presence of a quorum. A majority of the members of the community preservation committee shall constitute a quorum. The community preservation committee shall approve its actions by majority vote. Recommendations to the legislative body shall include their anticipated costs.
(d) After receiving recommendations from the community preservation committee, the legislative body shall take such action and approve such appropriations from the Community Preservation Fund as set forth in section 7, and such additional non-Community Preservation Fund appropriations as it deems appropriate to carry out the recommendations of the community preservation committee. In the case of a city, the ordinance shall provide for the mechanisms under which the legislative body may approve or veto appropriations made pursuant to this chapter, in accordance with the city charter.
(e) For the purposes of community preservation and upon the recommendation of the community preservation committee, a city or town may take by eminent domain under chapter 79, the fee or any lesser interest in real property or waters located in such city or town if such taking has first been approved by a two-thirds vote of the legislative body. Upon a like recommendation and vote, a city or town may expend monies in the Community Preservation Fund, if any, for the purpose of paying, in whole or in part, any damages for which a city or town may be liable by reason of a taking for the purposes of community preservation.
(f) Section 16 of chapter 30B shall not apply to the acquisition by a city or town, of real property or an interest therein, as authorized by this chapter for the purposes of community preservation and upon recommendation of the community preservation committee and, notwithstanding section 14 of chapter 40, for purposes of this chapter, no such real property, or interest therein, shall be acquired by any city or town for a price exceeding the value of the property as determined by such city or town through procedures customarily accepted by the appraising profession as valid.
A city or town may appropriate money in any year from the Community Preservation Fund to an affordable housing trust fund.