Perry first you need to be nice to your paddle partners and not jump out of the raft to cool off in the rapids.
Ok if you really want to do this, contact the managing agency for the rivers you are interested in, even if a permit is not required there will still be a managing agency whether it is state parks, usfs, or blm. They will be able to tell you what kind of mininum guide requirements you are required to have. Also like in colorado we have CROA(colorado river outfitter association) they will also be able to get you in touch with alot of the correct folks.
In CO. I forget what the min. requirments are but basically you keep a river log with your miles and after the min you do a check out run with a guide instructor. A guide instructor is someone who has logged larger number of min. miles on that class of river wether it be class 3,4 or 5. So you will be required to go through a guide school and log your miles to accumulate enough miles to become a trainer if you are the one that is going to do the training.
Remember if an incident happens where a lawyer might get involved they will look into everything, starting with the guide, if they find that the guide was trained by a non certified instructor then the guide could become liable and therefor the company owner who either did the training or hired the guide.
Someone else chime in if I am incorrect on this please.
There is pretty much only one or two insurance companies out there that insure outfitters and yes get the most amount of coverage possible I believe the industry min. is a million.
If you really want to do this head to the America Outdoors show this winter in reno where you can meet with the insurance companies, all the vendors you need as well as some very good seminars geared towards company owners.