Part Five: Subbasin Plans

In 2004-05 and 2010-11, the Council adopted into the program 59 subbasin management plans developed by subbasin planning entities consisting of state and federal fish and wildlife agencies and tribes (agencies and tribes) and other regional and local organizations. The key elements of a subbasin plan are a 10-15 year management plan, an assessment of the subbasin’s historical and existing conditions, and an inventory of past accomplishments. Each management plan contains a vision and biological objectives for that subbasin, and identifies specific actions necessary to protect, mitigate, and enhance fish and wildlife in that subbasin. The subbasin plans thus reflect local policies and priorities while remaining consistent with the basinwide vision, biological objectives, and strategies. The subbasin plans remain a fundamental part of the program.

As core elements of the Council’s fish and wildlife program, subbasin plans provide historical perspective for the project review process for Bonneville Power Administration (Bonneville) funding, a process that involves the fish and wildlife agencies and tribes, the Independent Scientific Review Panel (ISRP) and the Council. However, where other planning efforts have superseded the subbasin plans, those plans may be used to inform project review and funding. Examples of such plans are the Endangered Species Act (ESA) recovery plans or state-specific management plans. The Council expects that projects implemented through the program will be consistent with the goals, limiting factors, and actions indentified in thesubbasin plans or other relevant planning documents.

The ISRP uses subbasin plans to determine if projects support, and are consistent with, the plans and other program elements. Subbasin plans also provide an opportunity to integrate and coordinate projects and programs funded by entities other than Bonneville, including Canadian entities in transboundary areas of subbasins.

In the 10 years since subbasin management plans were adopted, continued restoration, recovery, implementation, and planning work has occurred. The Council recognizes that physical conditions and priorities may have changed, such as in areas where dams have been removed or where substantial restoration work has occurred. Subbasin plans provided the foundation for many ESA recovery plans and state management plans. For the Council, subbasin plans remain the primary planning documents to guide implementation; however, in some areas of the basin, these other plans are more current than subbasin plans.

Because subbasin plans are integral to the fish and wildlife program, the Council will identify subbasin plans most in need of an update. The primary purpose of an update will be to incorporate important aspects of the further planning work that have occurred since the first adoption of the subbasin plans into the program, including consideration of relevant portions of recovery plans, additional or revised population or environmental objectives, summary tables, and implementation action plans.

Updated management plans will undergo scientific review and follow all guidelines set forth by the Council. Along with current related plans that can be found on the subbasin dashboards, existing management plans will continue to be used to guide project review and funding recommendations. If no updates are submitted, the Council will continue to use the existing subbasin management plans, and other related plans, to implement its program.

The Council’s subbasin dashboards are a central platform for gathering, retaining, tracking, and reporting critical elements of the subbasin plans, such as objectives, measures, limiting factors, and focal species information. Also found on the subbasin dashboards are links to the latest tribal, state and federal planning efforts. The subbasin dashboards will be kept up to date based on current subbasin and recovery plans and input from regional fish and wildlife agencies and tribes.

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Part Six: How the Program is Implemented →

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Contact Eric Schrepel with any questions or requests, thank you.