We have new projects to share, updates, and reminders - read on!

Funding for Towns & Cities Implementing LD2003

As part of the DECD Housing Opportunity Program, municipalities are eligible to receive funding for the implementation of regulations associated with last years housing law, LD2003.

a. Eligible municipalities that have (1) one or more designated growth areas or (2) a public, special district, or other centrally managed water system and a public, special district, or other comparable sewer system shall receive up to $10,000.


b. Eligible municipalities that do not have (1) designated growth areas or (2) a public, special district, or other centrally managed water system and a public, special district or other comparable sewer system shall receive up to $5,000.

Municipalities can request funding upfront, or reimbursement for eligible expense. More information is available on the DECD website. Key documents are below:

If you have questions, reach out or contact DECD directly at housing.decd@maine.gov.

Small Business supported by CDBG Grant

Yarrow is a small a wellness boutique and gift shop located in Kittery, and the owner Jodie Curtis, says her CDBG Microenterprise forgivable loan was instrumental to the expansion of her business, "...knowing I have these added funds allows me to move forward with more confidence and I am again excited to see what the future holds for my small business!"

Through the microenterprise loan program, forgivable loans are available to low-to-moderate income business owners with five or fewer employees, located in York and Cumberland counties.

The program is a partnership between SMPDC and the Maine Small Business Development Center.

Learn More

Regional Broadband Event - Save the Date

You're Invited! The York Region Broadband & Digital Equity Forum is Wednesday, October 18th from 9:00am to 1:00 p.m. in the Pratt & Whitney Building at York County Community College in Wells.

This interactive, in-person event aims to bring together people from a range of sectors and perspectives – including community members and staff from municipal governments, libraries, social service agencies, and community organizations – to learn about efforts to increase access to high speed internet for York County residents.


The agenda includes time for networking, learning about resources and solutions, and action planning for advancing digital equity and inclusion in this region. This is a free event- morning refreshments and lunch will be served. Stipends are available for travel.


If you are interested in attending, contact James Rather jrather@smpdc.or to get on the mailing list.

Contact James
Visit our Website

Coastal Community Grants Awarded in Ogunquit & Old Orchard Beach

The Town of Old Orchard Beach and SMPDC, on behalf of the Town of Ogunquit, were recently awarded Coastal Community Grants from the Maine Coastal Program to advance local priority coastal planning efforts. SMPDC assisted both towns with project development and preparing the grant applications.

Ogunquit's project will investigate nature-based solutions for stormwater management and erosion issues at the Maine Beach parking lot and develop a conceptual design for a nature-based solution implementation pilot. Old Orchard Beach's project aims to enhance the health and resilience of local salt marshes and reduce coastal flooding vulnerability in the community. SMPDC is excited to assist both communities with implementing these important projects.

Berwicks to the Border - Eastern Trail Feasibility Study

The municipalities of Kittery, Eliot, York, South Berwick and North Berwick in collaboration with the Eastern Trail (ET), SMPDC, and the Maine Department of Transportation (MaineDOT) are conducting a study to evaluate alternatives for future segments of the Eastern Trail between the Route 1 bridge in Kittery and North Berwick. Currently, there are identified on-road routes in this area, but moving the trail entirely off-road has always been the long-term plan- understanding feasibility is the first step.

The study will consider costs, potential impacts, constraints, and seek public input to recommend locations. The project team has contracted with VHB to complete the work, and kickoff meetings will be held shortly. 

It's getting colder... need an Energy Audit?

As the temps go down and energy costs go up, reach out to SMPDC if your business is interested in an energy audit!

SMPDC offers subsidized energy audits to businesses statewide, which can help you understand your energy usage, and get recommendations for increasing efficiency and reducing costs.

Learn More

Energy audits can also open your business up to additional funding- The Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) provides grants to rural small businesses to fund energy efficiency and renewable energy upgrades.

Funding Opportunities

  • Small Public Water System Emerging Contaminant Grants: Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention Division of Environmental and Community Health is offering grant funding for up to $60,000 for small public water systems projects to mitigate PFAS contamination, offered on a rolling basis. If PFAS contamination is a concern for your community, contact Bill Dawson at Maine Department of Health and Human Services to discuss your project: William.Dawson@maine.gov or (207) 287-6196.

  • USDA Community Facilities Direct Loan Program: The CF Direct Loan Program provides affordable funding to develop essential community facilities: facilities that provide an essential service to the local community for the orderly development of the community. The facility must be located in a rural area and primarily serve rural residents. Funding in the form of grants and low interest loans is available for rural areas including cities, villages, townships, and towns including Federally recognized Tribal lands with no more than 20,000 residents.

SMPDC in the News

Low Income Southern Maine Residents can apply for subsidized high speed internet - Saco Bay News

Biddeford Climate Change task force finalize proposed action steps - Portland Press Herald

Rails to Trails, bill opens door for Mountain Division Trail expansion - The Bridgton News

Portsmouth Naval Shipyard bus service could ease traffic, but do workers want it? - Portsmouth Herald

Welcome, Brookelyn Gingras!

In May, Brookelyn joined SMPDC as our new Regional Planner! Brookelyn does planning and economic development work at SMPDC, supporting on grant programs, the Broadband program, and long-range planning.

Brookelyn has a degree in Wildlife Ecology at the University of Maine, has worked at the Land Use Planning Commission in Oxford County, and is now pursuing a masters in policy and planning at the Muskie School of Public Service at USM. Brookelyn is a new home owner in Alfred, and enjoys many hobbies- including gardening and board games. 

SMPDC Grand Tour

This August, SMPDC staff piled into a bus and took our first ever region wide tour! After doubling in staff size in the past two years, our senior staff realized that many of our new folks hadn’t seen much of our region, especially our inland and rural communities. We started in Saco, drove through Sanford, north through central York County to Cornish & Parsonsfield, and up to Fryeburg and Lovell. The tour was instructive, as our planners saw past SMPDC projects, development patterns, and business in our many different communities. We are planning a coastal tour next, in the off-season, of course! 

Remember to follow us on social media for more frequent news and updates, or reach out to learn more.

Southern Maine Planning & Development Commission | Website
Facebook  Instagram  LinkedIn  Twitter