(1) The department, using existing information, shall evaluate the social and biological conditions on rivers and identify those rivers where further analysis and planning may be needed in order to prevent or resolve social conflicts.

(2) The department shall implement Title 75, chapter 1, MCA, the Montana Environmental Policy Act (MEPA) when developing a management plan or when proposing rules for a specific river.

(3) When developing a river recreation management plan for a specific river, the department shall conduct an analysis and decision-making process that complies with MEPA and includes collection and analysis of data, appointment of a citizen advisory committee, development of alternatives, and public review and comment.

(4) The department shall develop management plans and recommend rules to the commission based on the following:

(a) the values and input of the public;

(b) best available biological information;

(c) best available social information;

(d) best available economic information;

(e) recommendations of the citizen advisory committee;

(f) input and advice from the commission; and

(g) MEPA analysis.

(5) Following the adoption of a management plan or rules, the department to the best of its ability shall assess the effectiveness of management actions considering the information and analysis developed in (4) . Based on the assessment, the department, with the concurrence of the commission, may amend or repeal a management plan and the commission may amend or repeal rules as needed.

(6) The department shall include other state, tribal, and federal agencies having jurisdiction over a river or the reach of a river when developing management plans and rules.

History: 87-1-301, 87-1-303, MCA; IMP, 87-1-201, 87-1-301, 87-1-303, MCA; NEW, 2004 MAR p. 2718, Eff. 11/5/04.