Skip to main content

Applicant Guidance

All Municipal Planning Grant (MPG) applications must be submitted through the online Grant Electronic Application and Reporting System (GEARS). Grants are available to municipalities with a confirmed local planning process. Municipalities without a confirmed local planning process may only apply for funding to prepare a municipal plan (necessary to obtain confirmation). The work documents below should be used to prepare the content of your application before you begin the online application process.

Before Applying 

  • 2023 Program Description – provides an overview of the grant program including the purpose, available funding, competitive criteria, and this year's grant priorities. Review to determine the eligibility of your town and project. Pay special attention to the competitive criteria and statewide priorities to determine if your project is a good candidate for funding through this program. (PDF Document)
  • Application Guide - Presents the application questions, guidance on preparing a competitive application, and provides space for writing draft responses. (Word Document)
  • Applications for the FY23 Round will be due, December 1, 2022.
  • 2023 Application Training Recording - We've prepared a video recording to assist in using the online grants management system to submit your application.

Developing an Application

  • Municipal Resolution for FY23 – meet with your local selectboard, planning commission, and other entities to discuss and agree on a project and to complete the required Municipal Resolution. Municipal organizations other than the planning commission (e.g. conservation commission) may apply but must have approval from both the planning commission and selectboard in order to do so. 

  • Procurement Requirements - rules for for selecting a consultant and obtaining other services using the grant, including provisions for hiring regional planning commissions.

  • Rural Towns - a list of towns eligible to have the Regional Planning Commission serve as an agent of the town for the MPG. 

Preparing the Online Application in GEARS

  • MPG Roles – review and determine who in your municipality will fill grant roles. We strongly recommend designating two individuals for the Municipal/Authorizing Official (M/AO) role and designating a grant administrator. 

  • Create an online "New User" account  – (if you don't already have one) following the instructions provided on the online application log in page. If you already have an account, log in and update any contact information that may have changed. Note that all individuals identified as Municipal/Authorizing Officials (M/AO) or Grant Administrators must register for an account as a first step. 

  • Initiate an online application – only the M/AO, or Administrator who is authorized by the M/AO, can "initiate" a Municipal Planning Grant application. To assign an Administrator who can initiate and prepare the application, an M/AO can send an email to MPG staff (see contact info below) with the name of the administrator. The Writer or Reader roles for an MPG application can be assigned at the same time or later in the same way (all those seeking roles in the application must first fill out a “new user” account).  

  • GEARS Application Instructions - use these page by page instructions to complete the online application forms and electronically submit. 

  • Electronically submit the complete application in GEARS  the application must be submitted electronically by either your Municipal/Authorizing Official or Grant Administrator prior to the December 1, 2022, ​6:00 PM deadline. If you have any difficulties or questions about your application please do not hesitate to contact DHCD staff. Staff will be available for technical support until 6:00 PM on that day.