Great Barrington is a special place but high taxes are forcing seniors and our small middle class out of their homes. Great Barrington has among the highest tax rates in the county and you may have just received your new tax bill and notice that it didn’t go down. If the Community Preservation Act is passed on Nov. 6. Great Barrington will have another 3 percent additional tax added each and every year going forward onto your tax bill.
Massachusetts has 351 cities and town with 146 now enrolled in the CPA. This year, the governor had to transfer $25 million of your state tax dollars to keep the program solvent.
The Waste Water Treatment project first phase of the upgrade just added another increase to your tax bill if you use the town’s sewer system, and there’s more to come. If Berkshire Hills Regional School’s proposed $54 million repair project is passed, it will add another $27 million for the district’s towns to pay. Great Barrington will be paying 70 percent of that $27 million. Will we be able to replace the Fire Department’s 30-year- old ladder at $1.2 million? The average home in town is assessed at $400,000 and the town’s yearly average increase is 3 percent, driven by the school assessments. If the CPA passes you can add another 3 percent on average going forward, an average 6 percent yearly increase. I don’t know about you, but I would rather try to control my tax bill and let someone else purchase the fairground property.
Vote NO on the Community Preservation Act.