Planning FAQ

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How may I contact the Planning Board members?

The State of Maine's prohibition against Ex Parte communication requires Planning Board members not to have private discussions about projects pending before the Board. Members of the public and applicants may contact the Planning Board by writing them a letter and sending it to the Town planner. The Town planner will make copies for all Planning Board members and the letter will become part of the public record. Members of the public may also speak to the Planning Board during a scheduled Public Hearing.

May I have a public notice sent to me?

Town ordinance requires that public notice be mailed to "owners, as currently listed by the Town Tax Assessor, of all properties located within 1,000 feet of the proposed subdivision, or of the 25 properties located nearest to it, whichever number is less." When public notices are mailed out for a meeting, typically several hundred notices are mailed out in a 24-hour period. With this volume, it is likely that special requests for notices beyond the legal requirement could be easily overlooked. Consequently, if you would not normally receive a public notice, we encourage you to telephone the planning office to determine the status of the project in which you are interested.

When is the next Planning Board meeting?

The Planning Board holds a regular meeting on the third Tuesday of the month and a workshop on the first Tuesday of the month.

When is the deadline for a Planning Board application?

Applications for the regular meeting must be received 18 days prior to the meeting. A request to be on the workshop agenda must be made at least one week before the meeting.

Is there an application form?

Yes. It is a simple, one page form basically providing address information and is available from the planning office.

What should be in my application?

The information required for an application is included in the Submission list in the Zoning Ordinance or the appendix in the Subdivision Ordinance. Please see the section titled "Planning Board Review" to locate the appropriate ordinance section.

What is an escrow account?

An escrow account is an account funded by the applicant which is used to pay for the time the Town engineer spends reviewing the Planning Board application. Prior to the Planning Board meeting, the applicant will be requested to fund the account at an amount estimated by the Town engineer. If the project is approved and funds are left over in the account, they will be rebated to the applicant. If additional funds are needed, the applicant will be requested to add money to the account. The intent of the account is to shift some of the cost of development review from the taxpayer to the applicant. Applicants who incur the cost of preparing quality plans for submission to the Planning Board later benefit from lower escrow account costs.

How does the Planning Board decide to approve a project?

The Planning Board is required to apply standards in the town ordinance and determine if the application complies with the standards. See the section titled Planning Board Review to locate the appropriate ordinance section.

May I look at minutes of the Planning Board meetings?

Minutes of Planning Board meetings extending back to 1967 are available in the planning office for public review and copying. Minutes since November 2001 are available on this website.

General Information
Town Planner
Maureen O'Meara
Phone Numbers
Emergencies: Dial 911
320 Ocean House Road
Cape Elizabeth,

Tuesday - Thursday
7:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
7:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.