What is the MAPC?


To the Editor,

While you were sleeping, an organization that is dedicated to mandating what Towns like Manchester should be doing to meet the heavy-handed agendas of faraway politicians and private interests has been slowly infiltrating the governments and affairs of 101 towns in Eastern Massachusetts.  Somewhere along the line it crept into Gloucester’s zoning by-laws. 

Per the MAPC financial statements, available on the organization’s website, “The MAPC is a body corporate and politic established pursuant to Chapter 40B of the Massachusetts General Laws (MGL)”. 

When an organization describes itself as a “body corporate and politic” and “whose purpose is to develop comprehensive plans and recommendations in areas of population and employment, transportation, economic development, regional growth, and the environment”, my antenna go up and so should yours.  The list makes me wonder what aren’t they sticking their fingers into. 

MAPC had operating revenues of $33M in 2021 that came from sources like “intergovernmental grants”, private grants, member fees and fees for services.  Their budget went up by over $6M from 2020 or more than 20 percent!  They spent over $3M in 2021 for Homeland Security which isn’t even listed in their Purpose statement.  I thought we already had a Department of Homeland Security? 

In case you didn’t know, our planning board is engaging with the MAPC to “help” us with many things like the new MBTA high density zoning mandates and studying the parking in Manchester.  It seems this group is tasked with knowing what towns like ours should be doing to meet an unclear and suspect agenda.  Several citizens groups in towns across Cape Ann are ringing the warning bells of the scope creep of the MAPC.  We would be wise to understand what this unelected quasi government organization is doing before it is too late.

Jon Keefe


gloucester, transportation, department of homeland security, cape ann