SENATE BILL 5637
State of Washington 57th Legislature 2001 Regular Session
By Senators Jacobsen, Regala, Costa and Oke
Read first time 01/29/2001. Referred to Committee on Natural Resources, Parks & Shorelines.
AN ACT Relating to watershed health monitoring and assessments; amending RCW 77.85.050, 77.85.060, 77.85.160, and 90.71.060; adding new sections to chapter 90.82 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 77.85 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 76.09 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 90.48 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 90.54 RCW; adding a new section to chapter 89.08 RCW; and creating a new section.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF WASHINGTON:
NEW SECTION. Sec. 1. The legislature finds that a comprehensive program of monitoring and assessments is fundamental to making sound public policy and programmatic decisions regarding salmon recovery and watershed health. Monitoring provides accountability for results of management actions and provides the data upon which an adaptive management framework can lead to improvement of strategies and programs. While numerous agencies and citizen organizations are engaged in monitoring a wide range of watershed parameters, there is a greater need for coordination of monitoring efforts, for using limited monitoring resources to obtain information most useful for achieving relevant local, state, and federal requirements regarding watershed health, and for making the information more accessible to those agencies and organizations implementing watershed health programs and projects. Regarding salmon recovery monitoring, the state independent science panel has concluded that many programs already monitor indicators relevant to salmonids, but the efforts are largely uncoordinated or unlinked among programs, have different objectives, use different indicators, lack support for sharing data, and lack shared statistical designs to address specific issues raised by listing of salmonid species under the federal endangered species act.
Therefore it is the purpose of this act to establish a framework for greater coordination of existing monitoring activities, to encourage monitoring and assessment activities most relevant to adopted local, state, and federal watershed health objectives, and to facilitate availability of monitoring and assessment information to agencies and organizations carrying out watershed health, salmon recovery, and water resources management planning and programs.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 2. A new section is added to chapter 90.82 RCW to read as follows:
State and local agencies responsible for implementing, funding, or directing watershed-related monitoring activities shall give full consideration to furthering the following objectives in designing and implementing monitoring activities:
(1) The goals, objectives, and questions that need to be addressed must be clearly articulated.
(2) Statistical designs need to be appropriate to the objectives.
(3) Meaningful performance measures need to be defined by objectives and address the appropriate geographical, temporal, and biological scales.
(4) Monitoring protocols need to be standardized to allow comparison among locations, times, or programs.
(5) Procedures need to be developed to ensure quality assurance and quality control of all data.
(6) Data management systems need to allow easy access, sharing, and coordination among different collectors and users.
(7) Funding should be stable and adequate.
(8) Decision support systems need to help integrate monitoring information into decision making.
For the purposes of this section, "watershed-related monitoring activities" means monitoring and data analysis relating to the management, protection, and restoration of the state's water resources, water quality, riparian habitat, and fish and wildlife species with life cycles principally located in state waters and adjacent riparian areas.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 3. A new section is added to chapter 77.85 RCW to read as follows:
(1) The monitoring oversight committee is hereby established. The committee shall be comprised of the directors or their designated representatives of:
(a) The salmon recovery office;
(b) The department of ecology;
(c) The department of fish and wildlife;
(d) The conservation commission; and
(e) The Puget Sound action team.
The director of the salmon recovery office shall chair the committee.
(2) The chair shall convene the committee from time to time to review the progress of state and local agencies with watershed-related monitoring responsibilities in achieving a comprehensive and coordinated monitoring program and in furthering the characteristics of monitoring activities under section 2 of this act. The committee shall invite participation by other state and local agencies and other entities when the committee reviews monitoring activities and responsibilities of those agencies and entities. The committee shall consider the recommendations of the state independent science panel and other technical or policy committees that have responsibility for reviewing or implementing monitoring programs related to watershed health.
(3) The committee may make recommendations to individual agencies to improve coordination among monitoring activities and to further the characteristics of monitoring described in section 2 of this act. At the request of the office of financial management, the committee may evaluate and make recommendations upon budget proposals for monitoring.
(4) By June 30, 2002, the committee shall provide an action plan to the governor, the senate, and the house of representatives for achieving a comprehensive watershed-related monitoring program. The plan shall identify key existing monitoring activities that support all levels of monitoring, including confirming that management decisions were implemented, making accurate status assessments of the resource to determine whether management objectives are being achieved, and confirming that management actions have the desired result through improved understanding of the functioning of hydrological, biological, and ecosystem functions. The plan shall describe measures needed for individual monitoring activities to further the objectives described in section 2 of this act. The plan shall make recommendations for increasing public access to relevant monitoring information and analysis to support the many watershed-related programs and activities that are ongoing. The plan shall make recommendations based upon a goal of completing enhanced coordination and modification of existing programs by June 30, 2007.
Sec. 4. RCW 77.85.050 and 1999 sp.s. c 13 s 11 are each amended to read as follows:
(1)(a) Counties, cities, and tribal governments must jointly designate, by resolution or by letters of support, the area for which a habitat project list is to be developed and the lead entity that is to be responsible for submitting the habitat project list. No project included on a habitat project list shall be considered mandatory in nature and no private landowner may be forced or coerced into participation in any respect. The lead entity may be a county, city, conservation district, special district, tribal government, or other entity.
(b) The lead entity shall establish a committee that consists of representative interests of counties, cities, conservation districts, tribes, environmental groups, business interests, landowners, citizens, volunteer groups, regional fish enhancement groups, and other habitat interests. The purpose of the committee is to provide a citizen-based evaluation of the projects proposed to promote salmon habitat. The technical review team may provide the lead entity with organizational models that may be used in establishing the committees.
(c) The committee shall compile a list of habitat projects, establish priorities for individual projects, define the sequence for project implementation, and submit these activities as the habitat project list. The committee shall also identify potential federal, state, local, and private funding sources.
(2) The area covered by the habitat project list must be based, at a minimum, on a WRIA, combination of WRIAs, or any other area as agreed to by the counties, cities, and tribes in resolutions or in letters of support meeting the requirements of this subsection. Preference will be given to projects in an area that contain a salmon species that is listed or proposed for listing under the federal endangered species act.
(3) The lead entity shall submit the habitat project list to the technical review team in accordance with procedures adopted by the board.
(4) In reviewing and developing the monitoring elements of projects to be included on the habitat project list, the committee shall consider the objectives in section 2 of this act.
(5) Where watershed planning under chapter 90.82 RCW has been initiated within the area covered by the habitat project list, and the watershed planning unit is addressing a habitat component under RCW 90.82.100, the committee shall share technical support and assessment information with the planning unit.
Sec. 5. RCW 77.85.060 and 2000 c 107 s 95 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) Critical pathways methodology shall be used to develop a habitat project list and a habitat work schedule that ensures salmon habitat projects will be prioritized and implemented in a logical sequential manner that produces habitat capable of sustaining healthy populations of salmon.
(2) The critical pathways methodology shall:
(a) Include a limiting factors analysis for salmon in streams, rivers, tributaries, estuaries, and subbasins in the region. The technical advisory group shall have responsibility for the limiting factors analysis;
(b) Identify local habitat projects that sponsors are willing to undertake. The projects identified must have a written agreement from the landowner on which the project is to be implemented. Project sponsors shall have the lead responsibility for this task;
(c) Identify how projects will be monitored and evaluated. The project sponsor, in consultation with the technical advisory group and the appropriate landowner, shall have responsibility for this task;
(d) Include a review of monitoring data, evaluate project performance, and make recommendations to the committee established under RCW 77.85.050 and to the technical review team. The technical advisory group has responsibility for this task; and
(e) Describe the adaptive management strategy that will be used. The committee established under RCW 77.85.050 shall have responsibility for this task. If a committee has not been formed, the technical advisory group shall have the responsibility for this task.
(3) The habitat work schedule shall include all projects developed pursuant to subsection (2) of this section, and shall identify and coordinate with any other salmon habitat project implemented in the region, including habitat preservation projects funded through the Washington wildlife and recreation program, the conservation reserve enhancement program, and other conservancy programs. The habitat work schedule shall also include the start date, duration, estimated date of completion, estimated cost, and, if appropriate, the affected salmonid species of each project. Each schedule shall be updated on an annual basis to depict new activities.
(4) In developing the monitoring components of limiting factors analysis and habitat work schedules, the committee established under RCW 77.85.050 and the technical advisory group shall consider the objectives in section 2 of this act.
(5) Where watershed planning under chapter 90.82 RCW has been initiated within the area covered by the habitat work schedule, and the watershed planning unit is addressing a habitat component under RCW 90.82.100, the committee shall share the habitat work schedule and limiting factors analysis information with the planning unit.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 6. A new section is added to chapter 90.82 RCW to read as follows:
In conducting assessments and other studies that include monitoring components or recommendations, the department and planning units shall consider the monitoring objectives in section 2 of this act.
Sec. 7. RCW 77.85.160 and 1999 sp.s. c 13 s 13 are each amended to read as follows:
(1) State salmon
monitoring data provided by lead entities, regional fisheries enhancement
groups, and others shall be included in the data base of ((
SASSI [salmon and
steelhead stock inventory] and SSHIAP [salmon and steelhead habitat inventory
assessment project])) the salmon and steelhead stock inventory and the
salmon and steelhead habitat inventory assessment project. Information
pertaining to habitat preservation projects funded through the Washington
wildlife and recreation program, the conservation reserve enhancement program,
and other conservancy programs related to salmon habitat shall be included in
the SSHIAP data base.
(2) In designing, funding, and implementing monitoring activities, lead entities, regional fisheries enhancement groups, the department of fish and wildlife, the salmon recovery funding board, and others shall give consideration to the objectives in section 2 of this act.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 8. A new section is added to chapter 76.09 RCW to read as follows:
In developing and implementing monitoring activities regarding practices regulated under this chapter as well as those authorized under the forest and fish agreement, the department, the forest practices board, and advisory groups shall consider the monitoring objectives in section 2 of this act.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 9. A new section is added to chapter 90.48 RCW to read as follows:
In developing, funding, and implementing water quality monitoring activities authorized under this chapter, the department shall consider the monitoring objectives in section 2 of this act.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 10. A new section is added to chapter 90.54 RCW to read as follows:
In developing, funding, and implementing water resources monitoring activities authorized under this chapter, the department shall consider the monitoring objectives in section 2 of this act.
Sec. 11. RCW 90.71.060 and 1996 c 138 s 7 are each amended to read as follows:
In addition to other powers and duties specified in this chapter, the action team shall ensure implementation and coordination of the Puget Sound ambient monitoring program established in the Puget Sound management plan. The program shall include, at a minimum:
(1) A research program, including but not limited to methods to provide current research information to managers and scientists, and to establish priorities based on the needs of the action team;
(2) A monitoring program, including baselines, protocols, guidelines, and quantifiable performance measures. In consultation with state agencies, local and tribal governments, and other public and private interests, the action team shall develop and track quantifiable performance measures that can be used by the governor and the legislature to assess the effectiveness over time of programs and actions initiated under the plan to improve and protect Puget Sound water quality and biological resources. The performance measures shall be developed by June 30, 1997. The performance measures shall include, but not be limited to a methodology to track the progress of: Fish and wildlife habitat; sites with sediment contamination; wetlands; shellfish beds; and other key indicators of Puget Sound health. State agencies shall assist the action team in the development and tracking of these performance measures. The performance measures may be limited to a selected geographic area. In developing and implementing the monitoring program, state agencies shall consider the monitoring objectives in section 2 of this act.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 12. A new section is added to chapter 89.08 RCW to read as follows:
In developing, funding, and implementing monitoring activities related to watershed health, the conservation commission and conservation districts shall consider the monitoring objectives in section 2 of this act.
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