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Island CPF funds show marked improvement

REPORTER FILE PHOTO

Shelter Island’s real estate market appears to be bouncing back after a lengthy period of decline, judging from the latest statistics released on Community Preservation Fund (CPF) money.

Money for the CPF comes from a 2 percent tax that buyers pay when purchasing East End properties and is used in turn to purchase open space for preservation and fund water protection programs.

Island revenues for the first six months of 2019 showed a 37.2% increase from the same period last year. It was the only one of the five East End towns to show an increase while the other four declined, some substantially, according to numbers released by Assemblyman Fred Thiele Jr. (I-Sag Harbor).

At the same time, because of the declines in the other towns, the overall CPF money for all five towns declined by 23.8%, netting $49.29 million compared with $50.17 million for the first six months of 2018.

In recent previous reports, Mr. Thiele has cautioned planners to be cautious in their spending involving land preservation and water quality improvements.

While the Island took in $810,000 in CPF money this year compared to $590,000 in 2018, East Hampton saw its CPF revenues decline by the largest percentage, down 30.1%, bringing in $11.72 million this year as compared with $16,77 million for the first six months of 2018.

Riverhead, which has been a leader in a number of monthly reports, dipped precipitously by 26.8%, netting $1.5 million for the first six months of this year compared with $2.05 million last year.

Southampton was down by 23.3%, netting $20.61 million this year compared with $26.88 million in 2018.

Southold was down by 7.5%, bringing in $3.59 million this year as compared to $3.88 million in 2018.

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