Outline of the state of Maine

Air Quality

Air Quality

State law requires districts to address indoor air quality in schools.

Code of Maine Rules 05.071.064 Maine School facilities program and school revolving renovation fund

Section 2. Maintenance and Capital Improvement Plans.

A. Each school administrative unit will develop and maintain a facility maintenance plan and a capital improvement plan that includes a plan for each building in the school administrative unit.

B. Each facility maintenance plan must include, at a minimum, a maintenance and replacement schedule for all major building systems to include but not limited to the following:

  • 1) heating, ventilation/air conditioning (HVAC);

  • 2) plumbing and electrical systems;

  • 3) roof systems;

  • 4) building exterior;

  • 5) windows and doors;

  • 6) interior (painting, flooring, etc.); and

  • 7) site maintenance.

Policy Type

Code of Maine Rules 05.071.125 Basic approval Standard: public schools and school administrative units

11.03 Water, Sanitation, Air Quality, and Boiler Requirements

All school facilities, which shall include buildings, grounds, and equipment necessary for the provision of instructional programs, shall be operated and maintained in safe, healthful, and sanitary condition. C) Air Quality Each room used for instructional purposes shall have sufficient air changes to produce healthful conditions and to avoid odors or concentrations of toxic substances or dust particles, subject to applicable rules. Temperatures shall be kept at a level that provides a comfortable environment for employees and students. If the heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning system is mechanically driven, it shall be in compliance with Statuteand related rules.

Policy Type

Code of Maine Rules 18.55.004 Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality


  • The design and construction of all new or substantial renovated public schools shall comply with the requirements of ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62-1981R "Ventilation For Acceptable Indoor Air Quality", hereinafter referred to as the Standard.


  • Except as otherwise provided for in this rule, this rule shall not require the removal, alteration or abandonment of, nor prevent continued use of an existing mechanical ventilation system.


Case I. New Construction

  • New buildings and/or building additions shall be designed and constructed with ventilation systems in accordance with the Standard.

Case II. Substantial Renovations

  • Where buildings are being substantially renovated, ventilation shall be provided in accordance with the Standard.

Case III. Change of Use

  • Where buildings or spaces are altered for uses other than those for which they were originally designed, ventilation shall be provided in accordance with the Standard.

Case IV. Existing Ventilation Systems

  • Where existing ventilation system(s) must be altered or replaced as a consequence of the building renovation or alteration design, the existing ventilation system(s) or replacement(s) shall be brought into compliance with the Standard. For the purposes of this case, only those ventilation system(s) affected within the scope of the renovation or alteration project need be considered.

Case V. Known Air Quality Problem

  • If an air quality problem exists as identified through technical analysis/evaluation, quantitative testing or qualitative assessment by owner/occupant in a building being altered or renovated, those area(s) of the building being altered or renovated shall be provided with a ventilation system compliant with the Standard.


Building - A building shall be defined as a structure used or intended for supporting or sheltering any use or occupancy. For application of this rule for renovations or alterations, each portion of a building separated from other portions by fire walls complying with section 908.0 of the BOCA Code shall be considered a seperate building. Where a structure consists of multiple buildings attached contiguous to one another but not separated by a fire walls the appropriate building area for determining replacement value shall be as ruled by the Bureau of Public Improvements.

Substantial renovation - Under this rule shall be defined as renovations the cost of which meet or exceed 50% of the replacement value of the building in which such renovations are to occur. The Standard - use of this term shall refer to ASHRAE Standard 62-1981R

Policy Type

Maine Revised Statutes 20-A 258-B. Air quality testing

1. Petition percentage. A request for an inspection of schools to test air quality is subject to the criteria established in section 258-A, except that a petition by 50% of the parents of the children of one school is sufficient to initiate an inspection by the commissioner. 2. Notify citizens. The commissioner shall direct superintendents to notify any citizen who requests an inspection of school facilities of the petition process for requesting such an inspection under this section and section 258-A.

Policy Type

Maine Revised Statutes 20-A 4013. Radon

1. Testing. A school administrative unit may hire a person registered with the division of environmental health within the Department of Health and Human Services under the Radon Registration Act to test an occupied elementary school, secondary school or other building of the school administrative unit every 5 years for radon. The method of testing must be consistent with testing Standard established in rules adopted by the Department of Health and Human Services. The school administrative unit shall maintain, make available for review and notify parents, faculty and staff of test results under this subsection. The school administrative unit shall report radon test results to the Department of Education and the Department of Health and Human Services. No later than October 1, 2025, and every 5 years thereafter, the Department of Health and Human Services shall submit a report of the test results from all school administrative units to the Legislature and the Governor.

2. Funding. When funds are available, the department shall disburse money to school administrative units to use for radon testing. The department shall adopt rules to implement this subsection. Rules adopted pursuant to this subsection are routine technical rules as defined in Title 5, chapter 375, subchapter 2-A.

3. New schools. A school administrative unit, when building a new elementary school, secondary school or other building, shall use radon-resistant new construction techniques consistent with rules adopted by the Department of Health and Human Services.

Policy Type

Maine Revised Statutes 20-A 6302. School building ventilation

1.  Applicability. This section applies to school buildings subject to basic school approval under section 4502 in which the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system is mechanically driven.

2.  Operation. Each school administrative unit shall ensure that the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system is:

  • A. Maintained and operated to provide at least the quantity of outdoor air required by the state building Standard code in effect at the time the building permit was issued or the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system was installed, whichever is later; and
  • B. Operated continuously during school activity hours except:
  • (1) During scheduled maintenance and emergency repairs; and
  • (2) During periods for which school officials can demonstrate to the commissioner's satisfaction that the quantity of outdoor air supplied by an air supply system that is not mechanically driven and by infiltration meets the outdoor air supply rate required by paragraph A.

3.  Inspection and Record. Each school administrative unit is responsible for:

  • A. Inspection of the heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system at least annually and correction of any problems within a reasonable time; and
  • B. Maintaining written records of heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system inspection and maintenance for at least 5 years. The superintendent shall make these records available for examination upon request.
Policy Type

Maine Revised Statutes 26 565-A. Air quality and ventilation; evaluation of buildings; Standard

1.  Advise and Propose Standard. The board shall work with the Bureau of General Services with respect to evaluation of indoor air quality and ventilation in public school buildings and buildings occupied by state employees and the preparation of the report pursuant to Title 5, section 1742, subsection 24, paragraph A.

  • A. The board may advise the Bureau of General Services and propose for consideration by the bureau air quality and ventilation Standard that are more stringent than the minimum Standard as defined in Title 5, section 1742, subsection 24.
Policy Type

Maine Revised Statutes 30-A 5953-C. Loans for energy efficiency improvements in municipal and school buildings

This section establishes a program to promote energy efficiency and indoor air quality in municipal and school buildings.

1. Efficiency Partners Program. The bank shall establish the Efficiency Partners Program, referred to in this section as “the program,” designed to reduce energy costs in municipal and school buildings and to create jobs by financing energy audits and cost-effective improvements that accomplish energy efficiency while maintaining healthful indoor air quality. The bank shall issue a request for proposals for energy audits of municipal and school buildings and for energy savings that could be achieved through cost-effective improvements to heating and cooling systems, windows, insulation, lighting and equipment in municipal and school buildings. Identification of cost-effective improvements to achieve energy savings under the program must be based on a comprehensive energy audit that has been performed within the previous 5 years by a professional engineer licensed in this State. An energy audit that is financed under the program or is the basis for cost-effective energy efficiency improvements financed under the program must address compliance with the model building energy code adopted by the Public Utilities Commission pursuant to Title 35-A, section 121.

2. Access to the program. Municipalities and school administrative units may have access to the program regardless of whether the municipality or school administrative unit utilizes a loan pursuant to this section to finance an energy audit or cost-effective energy efficiency improvements.

3. Proposals; contracts. The bank shall solicit proposals from energy service companies and individual vendors of energy service products. Notwithstanding any provision of the law regarding bidding requirements, the bank shall contract with an energy service company or companies or vendor or vendors to provide energy services in municipal and school buildings under the program. Whenever the bid proposals received are substantially equivalent, the bank shall in the contract process select an in-state energy service company or vendor whose primary place of business is within this State. For public school projects, bid proposals for energy efficiency improvements must include plans and specifications that bear the stamp of a licensed professional engineer or licensed architect.

4. Loan; loan agreements. Loans from the bank for energy efficiency improvements must be structured to ensure to the greatest extent possible that the cost savings achieved by the energy efficiency improvements are sufficient to cover the loan and to achieve a net positive cash flow as early as practical. The rate of interest charged for loans made through the program for energy efficiency improvements or energy audits must be below the currently available rate of interest charged on commercial loans of equivalent term and use.

5. Energy Payment Equalization Fund. The bank shall establish a fund called the Energy Payment Equalization Fund. To the extent that the fund has assets available to it through funding by federal, state or local governments, or grants, gifts, donations or payments from any other source, money in the fund may be applied to loans made to municipalities in the program if achieved energy savings are not sufficient to offset the debt service payments on a loan made through the program. This fund may include deposits made by energy service companies or vendors to guarantee their commitment to achieve energy savings sufficient to offset debt service payments but may not include any other donations or payments from vendors or interested parties. The fund may be used to provide general interest rate reductions or principal reductions on any loan or group of loans made under the program for energy audits or for energy efficiency improvements regardless of energy cost savings that may be achieved through the use of the proceeds of the loans or loan.

6. Report to the Legislature. Beginning in 2008, the bank shall report annually by March 1st to the joint standing committee of the Legislature having jurisdiction over utilities and energy matters regarding the program. The report must document program activity during the prior 12 months, including, but not limited to, contracts made with energy service companies or vendors, loans made to municipalities or school administrative units, energy audits conducted and energy efficiency improvements implemented.

Policy Type

Maine Revised Statutes 30-A 6006-F. School Revolving Renovation Fund

1.  Fund Established. The School Revolving Renovation Fund, referred to in this section as the "fund," is established in the custody of the bank.

2.  Administration. The bank shall administer and invest the fund. The fund must be established and held separate and apart from any other funds or money of the State or the bank and must be used and administered exclusively for the purposes authorized in this section. The fund consists of:

  • A. Sums that may be appropriated by the Legislature or transferred to the fund by the Treasurer of State;
  • B. Principal and interest received from the repayment of loans made from the fund;
  • C. Capitalization grants and awards made to the State or an instrumentality of the State by the United States for any of the purposes for which the fund has been established. These amounts may be paid directly into the fund without appropriation by the State and the bank is designated as the recipient for the State of any such funds;
  • D. Interest earned from the investment of fund balances;
  • E. The proceeds of any bonds or notes issued by the State or the bank sold for the purpose of deposit in the fund;
  • F. Funds from school construction audit recoveries; and
  • G. Other funds and gifts in kind or cash from any public or private source received for use for any of the purposes for which the fund has been established and that the bank and the Department of Education may solicit from any 3rd parties such as foundations or corporations, including the use of tax credits as available to support activities authorized for the fund.

3.  Purposes. The fund may be used:

  • A. To make loans to school administrative units for school repair and renovation.
  • 1) The following repair and renovation needs receive Priority 1 status:
  • a) Repair or replacement of a roof on a school building;
  • b) Bringing a school building into compliance with the federal Americans with Disabilities Act, 42 United States Code, Section 12101 et seq.;
  • c) Improving air quality in a school building;
  • d) Removing or abating hazardous materials in a school building; and
  • f) Undertaking other health, safety and compliance repairs.
Policy Type

Maine Revised Statutes 5 1742-E. Bureau of General Services; asbestos lead and indoor air quality assessme

1. Asbestos, lead and indoor air quality assessment and mitigation services. The Department of Administrative and Financial Services, through the Bureau of General Services, Division of Safety and Environmental Services, shall provide asbestos, lead and indoor air quality assessment and mitigation oversight services for public schools and state facilities. The Division of Safety and Environmental Services is the lead agency of the State for asbestos, lead and indoor air quality matters.

Policy Type