If Town Offices close on February 9th, the Conservation Commission meeting will be rescheduled for Thursday, February 12th, at 6:30 p.m., in the Public Services Building Cafeteria at 201 Bedford Street.
All Conservation Commission meetings will begin at 6:30 p.m with pending matters. Hearings will be opened by the Commission starting at 7:00 p.m.
Contact Information: Conservationcomm@lexingtonma.gov
Administrative support is provided by the Conservation staff.
Commission Charge (pdf)
- Philip Hamilton, Chair
- David Langseth, Vice Chair
- Joyce Miller
- Duke Bitsko
- Richard Wolk
- Alexandra Dohan
There are also at present 5 Associate Commissioners appointed for specific duties.
Committee membership details
The Conservation Commission meets twice per month throughout the year. Deadlines are listed on the Commission's 2014 calendar (pdf). For future dates, please see the 2015 calendar.
Conservation Commission Meeting Agenda (pdf)
Land Management Subcommittee Meeting Agenda (pdf)
Land Acquisition Subcommittee Meeting Agenda
Purpose of the Conservation Commission
The Lexington Conservation Commission was established in 1963 when Town Meeting voted to accept the Conservation Act (M.G.L. Chapter 40 51 and s. 8c), which had been passed by the Massachusetts legislature to promote and protect open space in the Commonwealth. The Commission's responsibilities were expanded to include administration and enforcement of wetlands protection when the Wetlands Protection Act (M.G.L. 131 Section 40) was created.
The primary responsibilities of the Commission include the preservation of open land and the protection of wetlands through the provisions of the Town, State and Federal Wetlands Protection statutes. The Commission holds public hearings under its statutory authority to protect wetlands from illegal filling or pollution and to protect them from increased flooding problems. The Commission is also involved in the acquisition of open lands for passive recreation purposes.
What the Commission Does
A major aspect of the Commission's work is overseeing the conditions under which work may be done that affects a river, stream or wetland in Lexington. Anyone seeking to work within 100 feet of a wetland, 200 feet of a river or stream, or in any area that may cause additional runoff into a wetland, river, or stream must obtain prior approval of the Commission. In order to get that approval, applicants must file under one of the two following procedures:
- Request for Determination of Applicability
- Notice of Intent/Abbreviated Notice of Intent
More information about filing to the Conservation Commission >>
More information about wetlands protection in Lexington >>
The Conservation Commission may also, in the name of the town, acquire land, easements, conservation restrictions or other contractual rights as necessary to maintain, improve, limit the future use of, conserve, and properly utilize open space areas and manage the same. There are a total of more than 1,300 acres of town-owned conservation land in Lexington. Many other wetland areas under private ownership are protected by conservation easements or conservation restrictions on development.
Endangered species protection falls under the jurisdiction of the state National Heritage and Endangered Species Program (NHESP). Any proposed work in both wetland and upland areas that will alter habitat for endangered and rare species must go through an NHESP permitting process.
To find out where this habitat is in Lexington, visit NHESP's Priority and Habitat Estimated Map viewer for Lexington, or visit Lexington's Conservation Division office. Please note that you will need to zoom in on the map in the viewer, using the toolbars on the right side of the viewer, in order to see habitat delineations.
Frequently Asked Questions about regulatory review through the NHESP >>
Visit NHESP's homepage >>