Maine Forest Laws

There are many laws that can affect the way that you are allowed to manage your property.  There are laws that affect the way you can harvest timber, conduct activities around water sources, zoning and deed restrictions, lease agreements, and more.  Town often have other restrictions that affect land use and activities you may want to pursue.  Always check with your town to see what their rules are.  Other laws that may affect you include Worker's compensation law, private liability for public recreation, all terrain vehicle use, and wildlife conservation laws.  I have also created the proper links that will take you to the Department of Conservation website and other sites that lists the the various rules.  Go to the site and click on the rules you need to read about.  The Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) controls organized towns in Maine.  Land Use Regulatory Commission (LURC) controls the unorganized towns.  I check these links periodically to make sure they work and are up to date.  Sometimes the responsible agencies change the links as they modify their sites or they change the rules.  It is your responsibility to double check with the appropriate agency and make sure the rules are up to date and match theirs.  These rules are sometimes complicated and this site or myself can bear no direct responsibility for your interpretations of the law.  If you find these rules complicated and hard to understand, I suggest that you hire a consultant forester to assist you.

These rules and many more are listed in the Quick Links section on this page.  If you want to view the Maine state page listing these laws, follow the links below.  Links to information change over time and can become inoperable.  If any of my links fail, this link will take you to the state page listing all of the Maine laws listed here:  http://www.maine.gov/doc/mfs/rules_regs/index.htm

1. Forest Practices Act:  http://www.maine.gov/doc/mfs/pubs/pdf/FPA_04_w_history.pdf

2. Chapter 20 Rule, Forest Regneration & Clearcutting Standard:  http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/04/058/058c020.doc

3. Chapter 23 Rule, Timber Harvesting Standards to Substantially Eliminate Liquidation Harvesting:  http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/04/058/058c023.doc

4. Statewide Standards for Timber Harvesting in Shoreland Areas:   http://www.maine.gov/doc/mfs/fpm/swstds/DOCS/Chapter 21 Final draft 15 June 2005.pdf

5. Land Use Regulatory Commission (LURC) - Home Page:  http://www.maine.gov/doc/lurc/

6. Land Use Districts and Standards (LURC) Chapter 10 -(Pay attention to 10.23 N: P-WL, 10.27 D: Road and Water Crossings, 10.27 E: Timber Harvesting, 10.27 F: Filling and Grading)  (download entire chapter) http://www.maine.gov/doc/lurc/reference/ch10.html

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