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Department of Economic and Community Development

 Record Group
Identifier: US-MeSA-19

Scope and Contents

The Maine State Archives (MSA) collects and holds the permanent historical records of the Maine State Government. MSA was created in 1965. By 1971, MSA housed the historical records that had been held by the Secretary of State, Legislature, Courts and Executive Departments. This included records from defunct agencies.

With the implementation of a records management system, groups of records were identified as having permanent historical value and were sent to the Archives after a designated period of time. These included Commissioner/Executive correspondence, meeting minutes from Boards and Commissions, as well as department-specific records.


  • 1933 -

Biographical / Historical

PURPOSE: The Department of Economic and Community Development is responsible for administering Maine's programs related to business growth, community development, tourism, and film promotion. These programs fall within four divisions: the Office of the Commissioner, the Office of Business Development and Innovation, the Office of Tourism and Film, and the Office of Community Development. In most cases the department's programs require a significant amount of interaction with other organizations in the public and private sectors. The Office of the Commissioner is responsible for policy development, including legislative activities and participation on numerous boards, commissions and task forces; financial management, including purchasing, contracting and human resources; facilities management; the development and implementation of the State Economic Development Strategic Plan and several grant programs.

ORGANIZATION: The department traces its roots back to the Maine Development Commission which was established in 1933. A reorganization in 1955 created the Department of Development of Industry and Commerce, and further reorganization in 1957 established the agency as the Department of Economic Development. In 1971 another reorganization reconstituted the department as the Department of Commerce and Industry, and shortly thereafter, in 1975, the department was abolished and many of its functions transferred to other agencies. As part of this process, the State Development Office was established within the Executive Department, and assumed responsibility for Maine's general business development functions. On October 1, 1987, the State Development Office was abolished to be replaced by the newly established Department of Economic and Community Development, which also assumed the development-related activities of the State Planning Office and the Department of Conservation. In 1995, the department transferred its Natural Areas, Growth Management, Coastal Zone Management and Code Enforcement programs to the State Planning Office and the Department of Conservation.

In 1996, the Department was reorganized for efficiency by consolidating the Energy Conservation Division within the Office of Business Development. This reorganization also shifted the department's primary accounting, personnel and information services functions to the Department of Administrative and Financial Services under a "clustering" arrangement, and established the Maine International Trade Center, which assumed the department's international commerce functions. In 1999, the Legislature established the Maine Technology Institute with the purpose of coordinating grants to businesses to commercialize new products and processes. The Directors of the Maine Technology Institute and the Maine International Trade Center are employees of the Department of Economic and Community Development.

In 2004, the Energy Resource and Conservation programs were transferred to the Public Utilities Commission as a part of their energy office. DECD underwent a reorganization in 2003 when the Office of Innovation was established to support research and development throughout the State. In 2006, the Legislature created the Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship in realigning the small business programs in the Office of Business Development but this office was left vacant by budget cuts in 2008. In 2012, after the State Planning Office was abolished, DECD acquired the Code Enforcement Training and Certification Program and oversight of the State-owned landfill properties.

Maine State Government Annual Report 2013-2014


235.25 Linear Feet (250 containers)

Language of Materials


State Agency Schedules
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Maine State Archives Repository

84 State House Station
Augusta Maine 04333