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199701100 - Shoshone-Paiute Habitat Enhancement

Sponsor: Shoshone Paiute Tribes

Budgets: FY07: $309,587 | FY08: $315,926 | FY09: $323,149

Short description: The Shoshone-Paiute Tribes propose to continue O&M and implementation of spring and stream enhancement projects that protect wild fish stocks and improve the function of key watershed processes.

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Final Council recommendation (Nov 2006)

Funding category: Expense

Recommended budgets: FY07: $309,587 | FY08: $315,926 | FY09: $323,149

Comment:

ISRP final recommendation: Fundable (Qualified)

Comment:

The proposal flows from outputs of the rather thorough, detailed, and interesting Owyhee Subbasin Plan. The proposal contains a (rather vague) description of the project by the Shoshone-Paiute Tribes to continue operation and maintenance (O&M) and implementation of spring and stream enhancement projects that protect wild fish stocks and improve the function of key watershed processes. Accomplishments since 1997 were largely related to protection of headwater areas, some stream habitat improvements recently, and development of the monitoring and evaluation (M&E) plan, at a cost of approximately $300,000 per year, with no end in sight, according to the sponsor’s statement on future costs. The proposal is reasonable and has a good M&E plan that the ISRP reviewed following the province reviews in response to the ISRP recommendation that the project was not fundable. This M&E plan is the strongest part of the project. The project also includes some good education/outreach activities. Overall, the general quality of the proposal has improved over the years of review. However, the ISRP’s “fundable” recommendation is qualified because the sponsors have not provided evidence of many concrete accomplishments during the nine-year project funding duration, and most of the proposed effort is for O&M on what seem to be marginal activities. The proposal does a reasonable job of listing the task-oriented accomplishments of the past nine years. However, a summary of biological results is not provided. Past accomplishments refer to extensive monitoring and data collections, so one would hope that some habitat trend responses could have been reported on. The proposal, however, indicates the data and statistical analysis to support effectiveness monitoring and evaluation is forthcoming as the M&E Plan is executed. Despite this forthcoming report, a narrative or at least a summary of the results is needed. Even the listing of project accomplishments could have been presented in a manner more helpful to reviewers in understanding the project’s timeline toward overall DVIR objectives. For example, it could have listed the number of springs on DVIR, followed by the number that need protection, and then a listing of those that have been protected (by calendar year), then a projected listing of the number of springs to be protected out into the future by year. The same goes for riparian exclosures, cattle crossings, stream crossings, etc. Other biological accomplishments are presented without explanation or reference documents, such as the statement that genetic analysis identified three pure redband populations (how was this determined, what lab determined it, and what documents are available for review that describe these results and analysis). Biological objectives listed are actually work elements, and consist of fishery and habitat surveys, and protection of springs and streams from impacts. The latter refers mainly to work on culverts, fencing, and road crossings. Additional work involves ensuring previous works remain functional. Section F of the narrative (proposal biological objectives, work elements, and methods) was incomplete, and the weakest of the proposal, and requires more detailed description, including measurable outcomes. Only one person is listed in Section I (Key Personnel). This section and sections on objectives and project history are incomplete. Overall the proposal has merit but is deficient in reporting of past results and couching future plans in a larger overall context for DVIR goals.

State/province recommendation: Fundable

Review group: Snake

Recommended budgets: FY07: $309,587 | FY08: $315,926 | FY09: $323,149

Comment: No change to proposed budget