New legislation creates further streamlining for wind project permitting in Maine. Governor Paul LePage signed legislation LD 1798 to revamp the Land Use Regulation Commission (LURC). The reforms within the legislation include moving all permitting review for grid scale wind projects in the Unorganized Territories to the jurisdiction of the Maine Department of Environmental Protection (MeDEP).
Previously, LURC or MeDEP depending on the location of the project would conduct review of wind permitting. Occasionally this could cause difficulties when projects overlapped jurisdiction boundaries. With the recent improvements wind project permitting will have a standard procedure and review process throughout the state. The improvements signal the Legislature’s ongoing support for wind development, and their desire to continue to provide all applicants with certainty and predictability for the entire state.
The wind permitting streamline process began in 2008 with LD 2283, passed by the 123rd Legislature and signed by former-Governor John Baldacci.
For more information, visit www.mainewindindustry.com.