Manchester panel poised to enact restrictions on horses on Water Works land
The Commission's Rules and Regulations Committee on Friday recommended regulations designed to address what Water Works officials say is an increased use of Lake Massabesic watershed property for recreational horse use.
The new regulations say:
-- Horses would be allowed on gravel fire roads as long as they wore some kind of diaper or waste-collection device.
-- Horses would never be allowed in water or on the shoreline, beaches, boat launches or public parks.
The recommended changes are expected to go before the full Board of Water Commissioners on April 24.
"If they were to show clear proof, scientific proof that (horses) were destroying our water supply, I would probably be for it," said Manchester resident Leslie Baxter of the Granite State Carriage Association.
The four said sensible regulations would allow horses at Tower Hill Pond or the fire roads around Little Massabesic that are called the Maze. Regulations could also require riders to dismount and spread horse waste when feasible, they said.
"It's all about scare tactics," said Auburn resident Dorine Remillard.
Griswold said she supports efforts to study water quality, particularly because blue-green algae has been spotted in the lake. But she wants the restrictions to move forward.
Last month, the state Department of Environmental Services removed horse riding from its list of restricted activities at Massabesic, following an outpouring of complaints from horse owners and several state senators.