Proposed Budget Cuts Threaten Historic Preservation

Governor Rell has proposed to divert $12 million annually from the Community Investment Act (CIA) to the state’s General Fund. In just two and a half years, the CIA has become a critical component of the state’s efforts to protect the resources that are essential to the health, vitality, and economic well-being of our communities. These funds help to stimulate the local economy, while also helping to stabilize and preserve Connecticut’s neighborhoods and open spaces.

The Community Investment Act relies on a $30 fee charged by town clerks for all land record filings. The municipality keeps $4, and the remaining $26 is divided among historic preservation, farmland preservation, open space protection, and affordable housing. In the past three years, more than 300 grants to municipalities around the state have resulted in significant infrastructure improvements, created jobs, and preserved land and buildings that define the character of our state. After decades of limping along on small federal grants, historic preservation finally has a source of funds commensurate with its pent-up needs, and now the Governor’s proposal would ZERO it out. No other fund was completely zeroed out this way.

The loss of this income stream would be profoundly devastating to historic preservation in Connecticut. We will lose staff, programs, grants, and momentum on dozens of improvement projects.

Please call or write or email your legislator and the leadership of the legislature to ask them to leave the Community Investment Act intact. All pertinent contact information can be found at www.cga.ct.gov, and the address for all legislators is: (Legislator’s Name), Legislative Office Building, Hartford, CT 06106-1591.

We must act now. We must save this dedicated income stream now, or it will never come back to us in the next biennial budget. Please act!