Options for Private, Business & Institutional Action

The most frequently used means of scenic/landscape preservation is acquisition of land or its opposite - donation of land. Hanover has been given many donations of land over the years, one example of which is the Dana property along Ruddsboro Road in the vicinity of Three Mile and Old Dana Roads, and extending up the slope of Moose Mountain behind the Dana cemetery. Donations can also be given to private individuals, nonprofit organizations set up to receive them, and institutions. At the time of title transfer donors may be able to specify long-term conditions, such as maintenance in a natural state, or restrictions in placement or intensity of development.

Many landowners have also placed easements on their property. The landowner retains his ownership, but gives or sells some or all of the development rights to the town or a suitable nonprofit organization such as the Upper Valley Land Trust or the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests. The reduction in development potential is then reflected in a reduction of taxes. The easement is attached to the deed of the property, usually in perpetuity. The owner is free to sell his property, just as he would have been prior to establishment of the easement, and the easement is conveyed with the title. Easements are often used to retain agricultural use of the land, and to enable owners to pass on intact parcels of land to future generations.

A variation on easements is the transfer of development rights, in which some or all of the development potential of a piece of property is given or sold to the owner of property elsewhere. The new holder of the development rights, under appropriate zoning conditions, can then develop more intensively, the impact of which is offset by the reduction of intensity on the property from which the rights were removed.

Estate planning and establishment of family or other trusts are also options for landowners to pursue.

See "Funding" for more information.