WAP-5D (10/17/05 version)
Watershed Action Planning And Implementation: Targets, Sustainable NPS Planning

State of Ohio NPS Vision, Watershed Action Planning and Implementation

Proposed Targets, Sustainable NPS Planning

Goal: The State of Ohio will continue to provide financial and technical support to a process that links local actions to state environmental priorities and targets, so that 80% attainment of aquatic life use water quality standards occurs by 2010. Specifically, the State of Ohio seeks to provide the capacity building tools necessary for local watershed organizations to become self-sustaining.

Sustainable: Provide for the support or maintenance of; to continue the existence of, so that effective, long-term NPS coordination, implementation and evaluation occurs. In the watershed action planning context, sustainable means developing and maintaining local watershed organization capacity.

2005-2010 Targets

Target 1: 65 percent of Ohio watershed assessment units have watershed groups receiving state assistance for personnel dedicated to water quality restoration or protection as central to their missions.

Baseline (June 2004): The state is providing 6-year declining watershed coordinator grants to 28 organizations covering 28 percent of the state land area. There are 2-year planning grants with another 14 organizations, covering another 17 percent of the state. The size of each watershed action planning area varies from an 8-digit HUC to less than a 14 digit HUC, with the median size being four 11-digit HUCs.

Target 2: An additional 20 percent of Ohio watershed assessment units have watershed groups that locally support personnel dedicated to water quality restoration or protection as central to their missions.

Baseline (June 2004): 93 of the 331 Ohio Watershed Assessment Units have some type of local watershed planning group.

Target 3: By 2007, Ohio EPA and the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, in consultation with the Watershed Program Targets Group, will analyze the existing watershed coordinator funding program to determine:

  • how does the size of the planning area influence sustainability;
  • has the funding investment generated the desired environmental results;
  • what would make the investment more productive; and
  • what, if any, adjustments to the current watershed coordinator program are necessary based on answers to the above questions.

Baseline: It is estimated that up to 50% of the 42 organizations, currently using state funding to support watershed action planning and implementation, may have to discontinue once the coordinator grants decline to zero.

Target 4: By 2006, identify and analyze baseline organizational sustainability conditions.

Baseline: A sub-set of existing documentation was analyzed, such as conditionally endorsed watershed action plans, associated review comments, and functional review (PDF 64kb) reports to establish a baseline. Preliminary findings - pre-endorsement summary (PDF 77kb) and endorsement summary (PDF 115kb) - are summarized. However, data analyzed to date does not provide sufficient information to establish a baseline.

Target 5: By 2007, identify indicators and process to quantitatively measure organizational sustainability.

During the development of the NPS Plan there was extensive discussion about what indicators, or measures, should be used to characterize organizational sustainability. It is agreed that there is a need for indicators that quantitatively measure the number of watershed organizations that have sustainable characteristics:

Baseline: Because the majority of these sustainable characteristics have not been measured during the state endorsed watershed action planning process (PDF 72kb), almost no baseline data exists to serve as the rationale for 2010 targets. The exception is that each plan was reviewed to determine if the local watershed organization had developed a funding strategy to support the watershed coordinator/group over time. In the majority of plans reviewed, a funding strategy was absent at the time of submittal. However, since the state commented on this omission, a number of watershed groups are working toward a funding strategy.

Target 6: By 2009 implement measurement process, report results, and recommend state-wide organizational sustainability targets.