.01 Purpose.

A. The purpose of this chapter is to advance the best interest of the State with respect to State tidal wetlands, including preserving the rights of riparian owners.

B. The State holds State tidal wetlands in both a proprietary capacity and in sovereign trust for the benefit of the people of Maryland. In determining whether to issue a State tidal wetlands license, the Board of Public Works has the same discretion that any owner has in deciding whether to grant to another an interest in the owner’s property.

C. In applying this chapter to determine whether issuing a State tidal wetland’s license is in the State’s best interest, it is the public policy of the State, taking into account varying ecological, economic, developmental, recreational, and aesthetic values, to preserve the wetlands and prevent their despoliation and destruction.