About Regulatory Review at NHESP:
A primary responsibility of the Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program is the regulatory protection of rare species and their habitats as codified under the Massachusetts Endangered Species Act (M.G.L. c.131A) and Wetlands Protection Act (M.G.L. c.131 s.40).
The Massachusetts Endangered Species Act (MESA) was enacted in December 1990 (M.G.L. c.131A). Implementing regulations were promulgated in 1992 and revised and implemented as of July 1, 2005 (321 CMR 10.00). The 2005 MESA revisions clarified filing requirements, specified time lines for the review process that our agency must meet, and implemented fees to ensure timely reviews and consultations with project proponents.
To learn more about the regulatory review process, please use the menu on the left to navigate through the website. Please see our Annual Report for a summary of recent activity.
We are committed to a review process that is timely, responsive, and minimizes disruption to landowners and project proponents while meeting our statutory responsibility to adequately protect endangered species.
We welcome your questions, comments, concerns, and suggestions: Jon Regosin, Ph.D., Regulatory Review Manager (508) 389-6376 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Other Pertinent Legislation
The Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) (M.G.L. c.30, secs. 61-62H and regulations 301 CMR 11.00) provides the public an opportunity to review proposed projects for environmental impacts, including potential impacts to state-listed rare species. Projects resulting in a "take" of state-listed rare species and disturbing two or more acres of Priority Habitat of Rare Species may be required to file an Environmental Notification Form (ENF) with the MEPA office (301 CMR 11.03(2)). All projects that require the filing of an ENF will be screened by NHESP staff for review.
Massachusetts Forest Cutting Practices Act (M.G.L. c. 132 sec. 40-46) and Regulations (304 CMR 11.00) require the review of certain forest cutting plans for potential impacts to rare species. All Forest Cutting Plans for sites within Priority, or Estimated Habitat will be sent to NHESP for review by a Department of Conservation and Recreation Forester. Please see the Forestry and Rare Species section for more information.
NOTE: For information on the Federal Endangered Species Act, please see the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's endangered species web page at http://endangered.fws.gov.