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Island preservation funds continue to rise

REPORTER FILE PHOTO The Community Preservation Fund collects taxes on real estate sales to spend on open space aquisitions and water protection programs.

REPORTER FILE PHOTO The Community Preservation Fund collects taxes on real estate sales to spend on open space aquisitions and water protection programs.

Seven months into the year, Shelter Island continues to show an increase in the amount of Community Preservation Fund money that is flowing into town coffers from a 2 percent tax paid by home buyers.

Since last Novembers election, up to 20 percent of preservation funds generated each year can be used for water quality improvement projects with the remainder going to preserve land.

The numbers were released by Assemblyman Fred Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor).

The latest figures for the first seven months of 2017 show a 21.7 percent increase in CPF money flowing to the Island. The town has received $1.12 million for those months this year as compared with $920,000 for the same period last year.

Riverhead and East Hampton are lagging.

East Hampton has taken in $14.6 million this year compared with $18.87 million for the first seven months of 2016. Riverhead took in $1.73 million this year compared with $1.74 million last year.

Southold raised its CPF income this year by 28.6 percent, bringing in $4.14 million for the first seven months this year compared with $3.22 million for the same period last year.

Southampton also is on the plus side by 16.2 percent, netting $34.99 million this year as compared with $30.12 million for the first seven months of 2016.

The overall East End numbers for July 2017 showed a decrease from $8.69 million in 2016 to $7.54 million in July this year.

But overall, the seven month period showed a 3.6 percent increase in CPF money on the East End, jumping from $54.85 million to $56.83 million, Mr. Thiele said.

Since its inception in 1999, the fund has generated $1.244 billion, including $95.7 million that flowed to East End towns in the past 12 months, he said.

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