NHACC is a nonprofit conservation organization that provides education and assistance to New Hampshire's local conservation commissions.



Conservation Commissions do?

Conservation commissions are local conservation volunteers who work to study and protect natural resources.

Conservation commissions are very active in New Hampshire!

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Conservation News and Events

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Registration Now Open for Saving Special Places Conference

Registration is now open for the Saving Spaces Conference to be held April 5, 2014, at Laconia Middle School. This year's event features 30 workshops and more than 40 presenters. 

Register by March 28 to take advantage of the lower $60 fee. After March 28, the fee is $75. Visit the conference website for all details.

2014 Legislative Session Considerations

NHACC is monitoring this year's legislative session at the State House. There are currently two bills that would impact conservation commissions and land trusts that we are concerned about. We will be paying particularly close attention to HB1271 and HB1100 and we plan to bring forward our concerns at the upcoming committee hearings. 

HB1271 (bill status / bill text) would establish a committee to study the powers and duties of conservation commissions. Sponsors include: Rep. Shawn Jasper of Hudson and Rep. Franklin Bishop of Raymond.

HB1100 (bill status / bill text) would establish a committee to study the ownership by public entities of land for conservation purposes. Sponsors include: Rep. Franklin Bishop of Raymond, Rep. Shawn Jasper of Hudson, Rep. Gene Chandler of Bartlett, Rep. Kathleen Hoelzel of Raymond, Rep. James Coffey of New Ipswich, and Sen. John Reagan of Deerfield (and whose district includes Raymond).

Details on the purpose and goals of the bills are limited, so we encourage you to call the sponsors if you have concerns or questions about the bills. Clicking on the links to the legislators names above will provide you their contact information. Please keep in contact with Executive Director Nik Coates if you have questions or find out additional information.

Both bills have been assigned to the Resources, Recreation and Development Committee. The bills have not yet been scheduled for hearings. We understand that the hearings are likely to be the week of January 27. When we have additional information on the hearing dates, we will provide it here. In the upcoming NHACC e-newsletter, we will be providing an analysis of the bills and information of how you can get involved. in the NHACC e-newsletter next week and information of how you can get involved. If you are not yet signed up for the e-newsletter, contact us and we will add you to the distribution list.

We are also tracking several other bills that could impact conservation commissions and their work. We will continue to update you in this News section it as the action at the legislature heats up.

Nicholas Coates named Executive Director of New Hampshire Association of Conservation Commissions

The Board of the New Hampshire Association of Conservation Commissions (NHACC) has named its fifth executive director in its 44-year history.

Nicholas "Nik" Coates comes to NHACC after six years as a planner with the Central New Hampshire Regional Planning Commission (CNHRPC). He moves into the position after Carol Andrews spent the past eight years as NHACC's executive director. Andews followed Marjorie Swope , the organization's longtime executive director. Read the full press release here.

Field Trip 101 (You Can Lead a Guided Hike!) and Speaking for Wildlife Training

The Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, UNH Cooperative Extension and NH Audubon are co-sponsoring a free volunteer training on February 1 to provide participants with the basics of planning and executing a guided nature walk and/or delivering a walking talk. Follow this link for more information.

NH Energy Facility Siting Report Available

The report for the state's Energey Facility Siting process, including the feedback from the focus groups and citizen workshops has been delivered to the Governor and Legislature. It is available on the NH Office of Energy and Planning website

11/20/13 Citizen Input needed on Siting Energy Facilities

Your input is needed to determine whether to change the Site Evaluation Committee's process for permitting large energy projects. Workshops to gather citizen input are scheduled for several locations in New Hampshire. Click here for more information.

Your Assistance is Needed to Determine Which Conservation Commission Came First

50 years go the NH Legislature passed the enabling legislation for conservation commissions. Towns began forming commissions the following year.

We need your help: When did your community vote to form a conservation commission? Were you the first? Is your commission the newest in the state? To celebrate this important milestone, we'll display copies of your warrant articles at the NHACC Annual Meeting. 

Please contact the NHACC office if you don't know what year to start; we have an idea of when most commissions started. You'll need to research the town reports from the year of formation and the following year. Send us a photocopy or scan of the warrant language (year of passage) and any related discussion (minutes of the previous year's meeting). 

You can send us the documents in two ways: Email us scans of the relevant pages or snail mail copies to NHACC, 54 Porstmouth Street, Concord, NH 03301.

Have fun and thanks for your help!

7/1/13 LCHIP Funding Success!

Finally the Land and Community Heritage Investment Program will be fully funded! LCHIP can get back to its important work. Read more here.

US Supreme Court Decision

The June 25th US Supreme Court Decision in the KOONTZ v. ST. JOHNS RIVER WATER MANAGEMENT DISTRICT case leaves many questions for municipalities. Vermont Law School Professor John D. Echeverria "......the decision in Koontz v. St. Johns River Water Management District will result in long-lasting harm to America’s communities. That’s because the ruling creates a perverse incentive for municipal governments to reject applications from developers rather than attempt to negotiate project designs that might advance both public and private goals — and it makes it hard for communities to get property owners to pay to mitigate any environmental damage they may cause." Read the full article: New York Times Opinion Pages.

SB 102 is dead!

The House just voted to kill Senate Bill 102 (local option to elect conservation commissioners). Representative Belanger from Hollis did a beautiful job presenting the committee's recommendation to kill this bill. Thank you for contacting your legislators about this bill.

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NHACC Membership

NHACC is the only organization specifically serving the needs of conservation commissions in New Hampshire.


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