News

Maine Climate Council Community Resilience StrategiesMaine Climate Council Logo

The Municipal Planning Assistance Program has worked closely to support the work Community Resilience Planning, Public Health and Emergency Management Working Group of the Maine Climate Council (MCC) to develop Community Resilience Strategies

The Council is accepting written comment (letters, emails, etc.) until 5 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 24. at maineclimatecouncil@maine.gov.

To learn about the Maine Climate Council’s goals, draft strategies, timeline, and how to engage with the MCC, please visit https://climatecouncil.maine.gov.

 

Municipal Climate Adaptation Guidance Series for Maine communities

The Municipal Planning Assistance Program and Maine’s Regional Planning Organizations have collaborated on a series of guidance documents design to help local governments increase community resilience in the face of sea-level rise and more frequent intense storms. Read more on our Climate Change page.

FY21 Round of Coastal Community Planning Grants Awarded

The Department of Agriculture Conservation and Forestry (DACF) has awarded nearly $157,000 through its Coastal Community Grant Program for five projects located throughout coastal Maine. This year’s grants, awarded and administered by the Municipal Planning Assistance Program at DAC, will help coastal communities by improving social resiliency, improving the health of shellfish beds, developing a model coastal resilience ordinance, developing standards for the control of erosion and sediment in storm sewer systems, and strengthening downtowns.

The grants are made possible by the Maine Coastal Program at the Department of Marine Resources, which provides funding through Maine’s federal coastal zone management award from the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration. Each project involves regional or local-level partnerships and each grantee provides a minimum of 25% in matching funds or services.

Coastal Community Grants are an important element of the Municipal Planning Assistance Program’s mission to foster innovative and effective approaches to land use management by providing technical and financial assistance to Maine municipalities. This was the tenth round of the grant program, which since 2012, has provided $2.03 million for 74 projects in coastal Maine.

FY21 grants totaling $156,956 were awarded to the following projects.


MPAP Services

The Municipal Planning Assistance Program (MPAP) provides land use planning expertise for Maine citizens, municipalities, regional planning organizations, state agencies and the Legislature, and promotes growth management principles in state and local policies, programs, regulations and investments by:

Providing technical and financial assistance

MPAP provides technical and financial assistance including: model ordinances and other guidance documents; workshops and webinars; one-on-one technical support; planning data; training for local officials; annual grants to regional planning organizations and competitive grants for specific planning projects.

Coordinating with state agencies

MPAP works with agencies across state government to assure that their policies and programs align with and support state land-use policies. We accomplish this through participation on interagency working groups, grant review committees and advisory boards. Comments that we solicit as part of our review of proposed comprehensive plans also helps assure that the missions and policies of our partner agencies are appropriately reflected in local plans.

Implementing Maine's Growth Management Act

Through the Growth Management Act's review and certification process, MPAP guides local authorities in the development of comprehensive plans and land-use ordinances that are tailored to the needs of the individual community and consistent with state land-use policies.


Other Items of Interest...

EPA Stormwater Calculator
Demonstration for Planning Boards

Using funds provided in a grant from the Maine Coastal Program, the Lincoln County Regional Planning Commission has created a demonstration of EPA's online Stormwater Calculator. The step-by-step demonstration is designed to show local Planning Board members the effect Low-Impact Development (LID) stormwater management techniques can have when used in a hypothetical development scenario.

Why your town should have a Comprehensive Plan

Learn about some key benefits your community can enjoy by adopting a comprehensive plan that is consistent with Maine's Growth Management Act, including:

  • clear vision for future growth
  • ultimate legal support for land use ordinances
  • enhanced state grant opportunities

View the Comprehensive Plan Brochure (PDF)

Older "Findings of Consistency" expired at the end of 2012

A state Finding of Consistency for a local comprehensive plan is valid for twelve years. A temporary exemption for older Findings ran out on December 31, 2012. What does the expiration of a Finding of Consistency mean for your community?

View frequently asked questions (PDF)

Growth Management Program Evaluation

The quadrennial Growth Management Program Evaluation was presented to the Legislature's Joint Standing Committee on Environment and Natural Resources in 2011. The evaluation summarizes the program's history, gives the status of recommendations made in the 2007 evaluation, and assesses the current state of the program.

View the Growth Management Program Evaluation (PDF)

To Encourage the Preservation of Dark Skies: A Report to the Business, Research & Economic Development Committee

Viewing stars with the naked eye requires "dark skies" - night skies that are largely free of light pollution emitted by misdirected outdoor lights. Maine is one of the few places in the eastern United States that still has dark skies. This report, prepared in response to a legislative resolve calling for the preservation of this natural resource, reviews outdoor lighting standards for commercial development and offers options and recommendations for their promotion.

View the Dark Skies Preservation Report (PDF)