NH Rivers Management and Protection Program FAQs

1. What does the Rivers Management and Protection Program provide that is not offered by existing state laws and programs?

River designation provides certain in-stream protection measures for designated rivers. It also increases public awareness of the river and creates a local planning and management effort centered specifically on the river and its resources. The local river advisory committee creates a forum for multi-town and multi-interest coordination of efforts to protect and manage valuable river resources. Future development is more likely to take place in a manner that assures that river resources are maintained.

2. Will designation affect local land use control in the river corridor? (Are my rights as a riverfront landowner in jeopardy?)

No. By law, the only land-use protection measures are prohibitions against solid and hazardous waste facilities. The Rivers Management and Protection Act (RSA 483) strengthens existing waste management regulations on designated rivers. There are no other development restrictions in the act. The act specifically states that “nothing in this chapter shall be interpreted to preempt any land and zoning authority granted to municipal bodies ... .” In addition, the River Management Plan can be used to help reduce the frequency of trespassing by ensuring that public access to the river is maximized on town and state lands, and by promoting improved management of river recreation.