|First Regular Session - 125th Maine Legislature
Resolve, To Improve the Predictability of Land Use Regulation in the Unorganized Territories
Emergency preamble. Whereas, acts and resolves of the Legislature do not become effective until 90 days after adjournment unless enacted as emergencies; and
Whereas, predictability in land use regulation is vital to residents and persons owning land within the jurisdiction of the Maine Land Use Regulation Commission; and
Whereas, the economies of rural areas and municipalities adjacent to the jurisdiction of the Maine Land Use Regulation Commission are significantly affected by land use regulation and permitting decisions within the jurisdiction; and
Whereas, in the judgment of the Legislature, these facts create an emergency within the meaning of the Constitution of Maine and require the following legislation as immediately necessary for the preservation of the public peace, health and safety; now, therefore, be it
Sec. 1. Maine Land Use Regulation Commission to initiate prospective zoning. Resolved: That the Maine Land Use Regulation Commission, referred to in this resolve as "the commission," shall initiate prospective zoning in a 2nd region of its jurisdiction no later than July 1, 2011. For the purposes of this resolve, "prospective zoning" means the establishment of zoning districts to accommodate growth in a region rather than designating development districts on a case-by-case basis in response to proposed development projects and to protect natural resources in the region by directing development to other zones.
To initiate prospective zoning, the commission shall use a process similar to that used in the development of the Prospective Zoning Plan for the Rangeley Lakes Region that became effective January 1, 2001. The commission shall identify the next region for prospective zoning based on existing growth patterns and services, the potential for development and the value and location of natural resources.
The commission shall submit a report to the Joint Standing Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry no later than January 15, 2012. The report must include a description of the selected region, steps taken and progress made in developing the prospective zoning plan and a timeline for adoption and implementation of the prospective zoning plan; and be it further
Sec. 2. Implementation of the Comprehensive Land Use Plan; participation by stakeholders. Resolved: That the commission shall establish a process for stakeholder participation in discussions surrounding implementation of the revised comprehensive land use plan adopted by the commission on March 3, 2010 and approved by the Governor on March 16, 2010. No later than July 1, 2011, the commission shall meet with stakeholders and seek their input prior to revising policies or practices to address issues or implement initiatives outlined in the commission's memorandum to the Joint Standing Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry dated January 28, 2010 and entitled "Anticipated Regulatory Changes Based on Revisions in the Comprehensive Land Use Plan."
The commission shall report to the Joint Standing Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry no later than January 15, 2012 on communication with stakeholders pursuant to this section and actions taken to implement the plan; and be it further
Sec. 3. Streamlining the permitting process. Resolved: That the commission shall develop a process to permit, by rule, routine and minor activities that meet established standards of design, construction and use to avoid adverse environmental impacts. The commission shall report to the Joint Standing Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry no later than January 15, 2012 on the process developed, activities recommended for the permit-by-rule process and a timetable for implementing the permit-by-rule process.
Emergency clause. In view of the emergency cited in the preamble, this legislation takes effect when approved.
This resolve directs the Maine Land Use Regulation Commission to take certain actions regarding land use. It directs the commission to begin prospective zoning for a region within its jurisdiction. It requires the commission to seek input from stakeholders prior to implementing the 2010 revisions to the comprehensive land use plan. It requires the commission to develop a permit-by-rule process for routine and minor activities within the jurisdiction. The commission is required to report to the Joint Standing Committee on Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry no later than January 15, 2012 with progress made on each directive.
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