About the Toolbox
What is the Toolbox?
The Beginning with Habitat (BwH) Toolbox is a guide to help towns develop and implement a "conservation blueprint", or suite of local actions that will achieve a municipality's land conservation goals. The purpose of this toolbox is to assist you, as a concerned citizen, municipal committee member, elected official or land trust member, achieve your land conservation goals by providing you with a series of tools that can be used to address common conservation issues that arise in many Maine towns. The toolbox includes an introduction to using BwH data and principles in municipal comprehensive planning and open space planning and provides tools, including example ordinance language, which can be used to address conservation concerns. We have attempted to include local lessons learned and the advantages and disadvantages of each tool to help you evaluate which approach will best fits your local needs.
We strive to provide the best and most current examples of tools that are being used throughout the state to implement habitat-related goals and will continually be updating and adding to the list of examples provided here. We are interested in hearing your feedback as to the usefulness of these tools. Please also forward any additional examples that you feel should be included on this site.
How to Use the Toolbox
Click on subject headings to the right to find more information about comprehensive planning and open space planning, to find example tools that can be used to address common conservation issues, and to find methods for financing your town's habitat protection efforts. An outline of the Toolbox with summary descriptions and direct links to each tool is provided under the the Table of Contents link.
BwH is available to directly assist you with any questions you may have and with the development and implementation of these, and other, habitat conservation tools. BwH can meet with your local boards and committees to walk through examples of how municipalities have created and adopted open space plans, passed local land acquisition bonds, drafted conservation subdivision ordinances, or passed habitat oriented overlay districts. By using habitat data specific to your community BwH can help you craft custom solutions that address local needs. Similarly, BwH is also available to assist local land trusts in strategic conservation planning and prioritizing local conservation focus areas.
For assistance, contact Beginning with Habitat at the information below.