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GEOPARCELS WORK GROUP
Maine GeoParcels: Integrated Land Records
What properties have water access? Where is the land in the Tree Growth program? Where is the real estate in foreclosure status? How many private parcels abut or are in visual range of wind farms? How many individual properties lie over a particular wetland or deer yard? Where are all of the properties that have sold or split in the past year?
All of these questions could be answered, and mapped, with simple queries against Maine GeoParcels - an integrated land records system linking records currently maintained across Maine. This system does not yet exist but its concepts are being developed and tested with a pilot underway in Hancock County.
At present, answering any of these questions involves time and costly searches of records maintained at several levels and geographic areas of government. Today there is no way to see the whole picture of land information in the State of Maine.
When land records that are keyed to digital parcel maps (such as tax maps) are integrated with information from municipalities, counties and state agencies, the resulting efficiencies and economies promote more effective land planning and management. The Maine GeoParcels project aims to capture these public benefits.
Over the past two decades geographic information systems (GIS) have been used to enable these tools, primarily at the local level in larger cities. Maine’s GeoLibrary has been working toward building these datasets and integrating these systems more cohesively through targeted grants and planning efforts over the past eight years.
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