Conserving Long Islands Working Farms and Natural Lands

Peconic Bay Region Community Preservation Fund Community Preservation Fund (2% real estate transfer fee)

Dickerson Farm Sikorski Farm Hayground Farm Cox Lane Farm

Please note: Many believe that the funds raised by the 2% real estate transfer tax go to Peconic Land Trust for its conservation programs. This is incorrect! The Peconic Land Trust raises its operating budget through charitable gifts and payment for professional services. The 2% real estate transfer fee paid by buyers goes directly to the Town in which the property purchased is located.

In 1998, the five East End towns (East Hampton, Riverhead, Shelter Island, Southampton, and Southold) obtained from NY State's legislature the right to bring forward a new real estate transfer tax of 2% on each real estate transaction occurring in these towns. An extensive coalition of farmers, business leaders, environmentalists, realtors, builders, baymen, and civic and community leaders across the region pushed for the creation of this Community Preservation Fund.

In 1998, the voters approved a referendum creating the Community Preservation Fund, which is a conservation program to preserve open space and farmland in the five East End townships. This fund is financed by a 2% tax on real estate sales. This is a one-time tax that the buyer of real estate is required to pay when purchasing a new or used home or vacant property. (In 2006, voters in all five townships approved a referendum to extend the collection of the tax from 2020 to 2030).

This program has been highly successful. More than 10,000 acres of land have been protected that otherwise would have been lost to development. The Community Preservation Fund:

In the long run, the Community Preservation Fund also helps to keep our taxes down. When property is left undeveloped there is no demand for more public services such as water, police, schools and roads. Important elements of the law are:

Community Preservation Fund Fact Sheet (pdf)