Farm & Open Space Classification

(Title 36, M.R.S.A. Sections 1101-1121 as amended by PL 195, c.603)

Farm land under this statute means land registered for long-term use in agricultural production.

Valuation -- The assessor establishes the 100% valuation per acre on a current use basis, i.e. reflecting their value as agricultural land, not as developable land.

Requirements -- At least one of the applicant's tracts must be 5 contiguous acres which produces a gross income of at least $2000 per year in one of the two or three of the five calendar year preceding the date of application. By April 1 of each fifth year, the owner must file an income report of the gross agricultural income derived from the subject property.

Withdrawal -- Should the owner change the use of part or all of the property, a substantial penalty is assessed.

See Property Tax Bulletin on Farmland Tax Law

Open space land under this statute means registered land, the preservation or restriction of the use of which provides a defined public benefit

Valuation -- Either market value of open space land or an alternative percentage-based method is used. In the percentage method, a reduction from market value is granted for each restriction placed on the subject property:
  • Ordinary open space land -20%
  • Permanently protected -30%
  • Forever wild -20%
  • Public access -25%

In no case can the land be valued at less than the prevailing tree growth valuation.

Requirements -- A public benefit must be obtained in one or more of the following areas:

  1. Conserving scenic resources
  2. Enhancing public recreation opportunities
  3. Promoting game management
  4. Preserving wildlife or wildlife habitat

Withdrawal - Should the owner change the use of part or all of the property, a substantial penalty is assessed.

See Property Tax Bulletin on Open Space Tax Law

It should be noted that Tree Growth and Open Space land can have the effect of increasing the value of abutting property. If interested in either of these classifications, the property owner should contact the assessor's office for an application and explanatory bulletin.

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Contact


  • Clinton Swett, Tax Assessor
  • Phone:
    207-799-1619
  • Mailing Address:
    PO Box 6260
    Cape Elizabeth, ME
    04107
  • Business Hours: Mondays, 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m.; Tuesdays-Fridays, 7:30 a.m.- 4 p.m.
  • Location:
    Assessing/Codes/Planning office, second floor Town Hall, 320 Ocean House Road - Directions
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