Introduction and Table of Contents



Cover Photo of Town Hallby Alex Herlihy 2009 Capital Improvement Program Committee 58-59
Table of Contents 1 Cemetery Trustees 60-61
Introduction 2-3 Conservation Commission 62-64
Contacts 4 Energy Committee 65
Directory 5 Finance Department 66
Rye Statistics 6 Fire Department 67-68
Annual Events 7 Heritage Commission 69-70
 RSAs 8 Historic District Commission 71-72
Overview: Town of Rye 9-11 Library Board of Trustees 73
Overview: Rye Beach Village District 12-14 Mosquito Control Commission 74-75
The Rye Master Plan 15-18 Planning and Zoning Department 76-78
The Rye Beach Master Plan 19 Police Department 79-80
The Jenness Beach Precinct 20 Public Works Department 81
An       “SB2”       Form            of Government 21-22 Recreation Department/Commission 82-83
Warrant Articles 23-24 Rye Schools 84-85
The Deliberative Session 25-26 Sewer Commission 86-87
Board of Selectmen 27-29 Supervisors of the Check   List 88
Town Administrator 30-31 Town Clerk/Tax Collector 89-93
Town Departments, CommissionsBoards & Committees 32-36 Town Moderator 94
Animal Control 37-38 Town Treasurer 95
Assessing Department 39-42 Trustees of the Trust Funds 96
Beach Commission 43-44 Welfare Department 97
Budget Committee 45-55 Zoning  Board  of  Adjustment (ZBA) 98-101
Building Department 56-57 Rye Water District 102



This handbook has been created to make it easier forRyeresidents and business people to understand how our town is governed. Each board, department, committee and commission inRyehas responsibility to the citizens. This handbook is intended to be a “how to” guide for people to the many servicesRyeprovides.

Ryeis a beautiful, historic seaside town. Each of us who lives and works here has  a stewardship  to ensure thatRyeremains the wonderful rural community it has been for over 230 years.

As citizens, we can do our part  by  understanding  and  abiding  by  the rules and regulations that govern our town. We need to participate in positive change and to resist unwanted change.

The Rye Civic League is proud to provide this educational tool for our community. We hope this handbook will provide the information and impetus for each individual to play an active role in Rye’s present and future. Many opportunities exist to have our voices heard. The Rye Civic League  intends to continue to improve this Handbook each year. We need your suggestions. The Rye Civic League also produces a monthly e-mail newsletter (the Rye Civic News) that captures the key points from town meetings and other important Town activities. To be added to the Rye Civic News distribution contact RCL at

A special thanks to Selectman Priscilla Jenness and the Town department heads, directors, chairs of boards, committees and commissions and other Town officials for their cooperation in ensuring that the information contained in the Handbook pertaining to their areas of responsibility is accurate.

NOTE: Although this handbook contains information about  legal requirements and provisions to assist  in  understanding  the  workings  of Rye’s Town government, it is does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon in any particular case for that purpose. The phone numbers, positions and dates all relate to the circumstances in the Town on July 1, 2013. Some facts may have changed since that date which may require consulting the updated version of this Handbook online at