This Comment examines the regulatory regimes surrounding the removal of state-regulated small dams in Maine by comparing the relatively underdeveloped regime in Maine with the much more coherent and robust regime in neighboring New Hampshire. When compared to more deliberate regimes, Maine’s system lacks key features, including a streamlined permitting program and a single clearinghouse for information, resources, and regulatory enforcement. Given the significant opportunities afforded by a coherent regulatory small dam removal regime, this Comment recommends that Maine follow the example of other states by creating a river restoration and dam removal program, re-establishing its statewide dam inventory, creating and enacting a strategic plan for small dam removal, and establishing a single permitting process for small dam removals across the state.

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