Common Questions

Questions about the RMPP

Questions and answers provided by The New Hampshire Rivers Management and Protection Program (RMPP) (Fact Sheet R&L-2):

How does a designation protect a river?
RMPP provides certain instream protection measures for designated rivers and a river classification system to match general river characteristics with the specific protection measures. According to RSA 483:7-a, rivers can be classified as natural, rural, rural-community or community. For each river classification, State law establishes specific protection measures which pertain to structures and activities within the river; these include dams, hydroelectric energy facilities, channel alterations, maintenance of water quality, protected instream flows, inter-basin water transfers, and recreational uses of those river segments classified as “natural.” The specific protection measures that pertain to the river corridor include the siting of solid and hazardous waste facilities.

In addition, as of 2008, designated rivers benefit from the protective measures of the Shoreland Water Quality Protection Act (SWQPA), RSA 483-B, regardless of the size of the river. Therefore, while all fourth order and higher rivers in New Hampshire are subject the Shoreland Act, first, second and third order streams that have been designated into the RMPP are also protected under RSA 483-B. See factsheet R&L-14, NH RMPP River Classifications and State Regulated Protection Measures as They Apply to Each Classification, for a summary of protective measures for designated rivers.

What does RMPP provide that is not offered by other existing State laws and programs?
River designation increases public awareness of the river and creates a local community planning and management effort centered specifically on the river and its resources. The establishment of a LAC creates a forum for multi-town and multi-interest coordination of efforts to protect and manage valuable river resources and creates an incentive for the riverfront communities to adopt and implement local river corridor management plans. The plans include recommendations regarding the use and conservation of the shoreline and adjacent lands within the river corridor. The plans shall not have any regulatory effect unless implemented through properly adopted local ordinances.

Designation can also promote public interest and a sense of respect or stewardship for the river and its resources by the citizens and local officials in the adjacent communities. As a result, future development is more apt to take place in a manner which assures that the valued river resources are maintained. A state designated river may also be targeted by various assistance programs, thereby increasing the probability that the efforts of various local river interests will be successful.

Will designation affect local land use control in the river corridor? (Are my rights as a riverfront landowner in jeopardy?)
By law, the only land use protection measures that are added with a river designation are those for solid and hazardous waste facilities, and, for first, second and third order streams, those described in the Shoreland Water Quality Protection Act (SWQPA). The Rivers Management and Protection Act strengthens existing waste management regulations along designated rivers, and the Shoreland Act protects water quality and personal property by establishing buffers and setbacks for new construction. There are no other development restrictions in the Rivers Act; what is a local decision before a river is designated is a local decision following designation. The Act specifically states that “nothing in this chapter shall be interpreted to preempt any land and zoning authority granted to municipal bodies under RSA title LXIV” (Planning and Zoning), and any local zoning regulations that are more protective of the river will take precedence over the State regulations of RMPP and SWQPA.

As a riverfront landowner, how will I benefit from RMPP?
River designation can increase respect for property rights and heighten recognition of the valuable contribution which landowners already make in river protection. Issues such as trespassing, litter, liability and erosion affect or infringe upon the rights of riparian landowners. Designation can also promote a greater public understanding and awareness of the unique problems and issues faced by landowners. The resulting increase in public understanding and interest in issues important to property owners can bring technical assistance, funding and other support to help address and solve such problems.

Also see CNHRPC- Example Benefits of River Designation into the NHRMPP 01-14

Other Questions & Comments
If you have specific questions or comments, please contact us and we will get back to you.

Warner River Nomination Committee
c/o Warner Conservation Commission
5 East Main Street
PO Box 265
Warner NH 03278

wrnomination@gmail.com

How Can You Support this Nomination?
You can support the Nomination of the Warner River by emailing or sending us letters of support. Letters should be addressed and mailed, faxed or emailed to:

Tracie Sales, Rivers Coordinator
NH Department of Environmental Services
29 Hazen Drive
Concord, NH  03301

(603) 271-2959
(603) 271-7894 (fax)

riversprogram@des.nh.gov

The Warner River Nomination has received letters of support from the following:
New England Grassroots Foundation
The Contoocook North Branch River’s Local Advisory Committee
Private Landowners along the Warner River

How can you follow our progress?
By attending our meetings, reading our minutes below and/or by visiting us at our outreach presentations.

Warner River Nomination Committee Meeting Agendas & Minutes
We provide copies of our agendas and minutes here, but to keep the most up to date, please go to the Warner Conservation Commission’s page here.
2015 9 29 WarnerBOSgrant
2015 10 13 WarnerBOSgrantPH
2015 11 16 Agenda
2015 12 16 Agenda
2015 12 16 Minutes FINAL
2016 1 20 Agenda
2016 1 20 Minutes
2016 2 17 Minutes
2016 3 1 Minutes FINAL
2016 3 16 Agenda
2016 3 16 Minutes FINAL
2016 3 16 Minutes p2 slideshow
2016 4 20 Agenda
2016 4 20 Minutes
2016 5 3 Minutes FINAL
2016 5 18 Agenda
2016 5 18 Minutes DRAFT
2016 6 15 Agenda
2016 6 15 Minutes DRAFT
2016-8-31-Agenda
2016-8-31-minutes DRAFT
2016-9-21-Agenda