In general this process does take a substantial amount of time and effort on the part of the applicant. For a conservation project run by a municipal shellfish committee, it may be worthwhile to break up the application into pieces, and draw on committee members to tackle individual components. Municipal shellfish committees should also contact their local Area Biologist who may be able to help answer questions or alternatively develop things like the vicinity map or other technical portions of the application. Municipal shellfish committees or others planning conservation projects should also be proactive in applying for an LPA. This may even mean applying for an LPA before a small grant in order to have all of the permits in hand before the grant payment cycle begins.
Overall, conservation projects that require an LPA are an important part of municipal shellfish management. Municipalities engaging in these projects can continue to learn new information that can help improve the future of shellfish programs and intertidal mudflats. Shellfish committees should use the recommendations and resources provided to help ease the burden of the application process. The hardest application to fill out is the first!
For any questions please contact your area biologist, Flora Drury at DMR Aquaculture, at Flora.M.Drury@maine.gov, or Gabby Hillyer at the MSLN, at email@example.com.