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MHPC Project Review Process

In cases where a Federal agency or its legal designee initiates consultation in accordance with 36 CFR Part 800 of the Section 106 regulations (PDF), or alternate procedures it may have established through a programmatic or other legal agreement under 36 CFR Part 800 Subpart C, the Commission shall follow the consultation procedures as discussed in those regulations. Otherwise, the Commission shall use the procedures outlined below in responding to requests for cultural resources reviews.

A Federal or state agency, municipal planning board, applicant, or other designee may provide project notification and information (see Lists of Materials) to the Commission for review. The Commission will respond to requests for review within thirty days of receipt of notice with either a request for additional information, or a finding of how the undertaking or project will affect historic properties.

If a project site includes, or is adjacent to, properties with buildings or structures over fifty years of age, or is in an archaeologically sensitive area, the Commission may seek information to determine whether such properties are eligible for the National Register of Historic Places, or whether the project is likely to disturb archaeological sites. This will often be in the form of a request for additional information, and/or for an archaeological survey to be completed. Requests for information may be for additional photographs or historical information. Archaeological surveys, when required, must be executed by approved archaeological consultants, and be completed in accordance with the archaeological survey guidelines.

In those cases where it is determined that a project will result in an adverse effect to a historic property, the Commission will consult with the party to avoid, minimize or mitigate such effects.

Project Review Overview

The Maine Historic Preservation Commission consults as necessary to assess the effects of projects on resources listed in, or eligible for listing in, the National Register of Historic Places. The goal of this consultation process is to identify significant cultural resources, and avoid or minimize adverse effects to them. The process can last from a few days to several months depending on whether there are significant cultural resources in the project area, the scope of the project, the agency's or designee's efficiency in providing information to the Commission, and the Commission's work load.

The Maine Historic Preservation Commission acts as a consulting party in project reviews pursuant to federal and state legislation.

In all cases, the Section 106 regulations (PDF), the National Register of Historic Places criteria, the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties, the Secretary of the Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation and Guidelines for Rehabilitating Historic Properties, and the National Park Service Preservation Briefs are used by the Commission to identify historic properties, assess project effects, and to provide appropriate treatment recommendations.

It is the Commission's goal, through the review and compliance process, to protect historic properties in the State of Maine while striking a balance between the public interest in historic preservation and governmental, commercial and private interests in various initiatives.

All review materials must be submitted in hard copy to the following address: Kirk F. Mohney, Director, Maine Historic Preservation Commission, 55 Capitol Street, 65 State House Station, Augusta, ME, 04333-0065. Email and fax submittals will not be accepted.