Cash-strapped municipalities eye nonprofit groups

Cash-strapped municipalities eye nonprofit groups - News - capecodtimes.com - Hyannis, MA
In 2015, Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole paid about $145,000 to Falmouth under a PILOT agreement; its total tax bill would have been $1.1 million without its tax exemption. Joel Bissell/Cape Cod Time file

 

Heritage Museums & Gardens is worth $27 million yet doesn’t pay a dime in property taxes to its host town of Sandwich. Neither does Cape Cod Hospital pay Barnstable, nor does the 300 Committee pay Falmouth.

That’s because the institutions, like hundreds of others on the Cape and Islands, are nonprofit and aren’t required to pay tax on their property. Millions of potential tax dollars are lost to local cities and towns each year on the nearly $145 billion in untaxable land here, even though in many cases the organizations benefit from town services such as police, fire and road maintenance. Read more.

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Sea change: Woods Hole’s new scientific leaders take the helm

Two institutions in the Woods Hole scientific community are welcoming new leadership this year, and both men say their biggest challenge will be to find new ways to fund their science without relying on government grants.

Sea change: Woods Hole's new scientific leaders take the helm - News - capecodtimes.com - Hyannis, MA
Merrily Cassidy | Cape Cod Times

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Cape nonprofit agencies rebounding from the recession

Marcella Hennigan, 6, of Dennis, far left, practices fifth position with other elementary ballet classmates at Cape Cod Conservatory. The conservatory's recent merger with the Cape Cod Symphony Orchestra has been mutually beneficial. Cape Cod Times/Christine Hochkeppel

Nonprofits on Cape Cod and across the country didn’t have the luxury of closing their doors during the worst of the recession. They were too busy providing health care, shelter and food to those whose livelihoods were suffering.

But as they survived, they suffered. They lost donations, their investments dipped in the stock market and many were forced to cut back on their programs or cut their staffsRead more.

Children of Woods Hole scientists explore Cape Cod

When Natalie Boelman had the chance to spend a summer at the Marine Biological Laboratory working at the Ecosystems Center, it was a no-brainer. It meant discussing the ecological puzzles of the Alaskan tundra with mentors and collaborators just a few doors away instead of having them spread across the country.

That’s what got her to Woods Hole. What keeps the scientist coming back each year from her home base at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory in New York City is swimming with her children in the ocean, walking them to their summer camp in the morning and back home at night and dining as a family at the picnic table just steps away from their back door. Read more.

MBL chief says new university affiliation will buoy finances, profile

WOODS HOLE — On the walls of Joan Ruderman’s corner office on the Marine Biological Laboratory campus are three reproductions of engravings done by German biologist Ernst Haeckel. Originally published near the turn of the 20th century, the panels were used in the days before PowerPoint to illustrate scientific concepts to students.

The vivid images display in intricate detail different parts of nature: hummingbirds in flight, Malaysian pitcher plants and orchids in bloom.

Ruderman had the panels hung after she became MBL’s 14th president and director in November. They harken back to her nearly four decades of work as a biologist. Now her focus has become the administrative side of science as she guides the independent nonprofit research institute through perhaps the most significant year in its history. Read more.