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Project Summary

Project 2000-035-00 - Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration
Project Number:
2000-035-00
Title:
Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration
Summary:
This project is a comprehensive watershed restoration effort. The main restoration components are stream channel reconstruction and rehabilitation, culvert replacements, road decommissioning, and road improvements.
Proposer:
None
Proponent Orgs:
Nez Perce Tribe (Tribe)
Starting FY:
2001
Ending FY:
2017
BPA PM:
Stage:
Implementation - Project Status Report
Area:
Province Subbasin %
Mountain Snake Clearwater 100.00%
Purpose:
Habitat
Emphasis:
Restoration/Protection
Focal Species:
All Anadromous Salmonids
Bass, Largemouth
Bass, Smallmouth
Chinook - Snake River Spring/Summer
Chinook - Snake River Spring/Summer ESU (threatened)
Cutthroat Trout, Westslope
Freshwater Mussels
Kokanee
Lamprey, Pacific
OBSOLETE-Carp, Common
OBSOLETE-Catfish
OBSOLETE-Crappie, Black
OBSOLETE-Perch, Yellow
OBSOLETE-Pikeminnow, Northern
OBSOLETE-Trout, Brown
Steelhead - Snake River DPS (threatened)
Trout, Brook
Trout, Bull (threatened)
Trout, Interior Redband
Trout, Rainbow
Whitefish, Mountain
Wildlife
Species Benefit:
Anadromous: 80.0%   Resident: 20.0%   Wildlife: 0.0%
Special:
None
BiOp Association:
FCRPS 2008 – view list of

Tributary Habitat Implementation 2007 to 2009,
Tributary Habitat Implementation 2010 to 2018

Newsome Repository Site – After Reclamation (Approx. 10,000 cu yd of tailings buried).

Figure Name: Photo 1

Document ID: P123986

Document: Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration; 10/10 - 11/11

Page Number: 5

Project: 2000-035-00

Contract: 54945

Newly constructed meander bend on Newsome Creek.

Figure Name: Photo 2

Document ID: P123986

Document: Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration; 10/10 - 11/11

Page Number: 6

Project: 2000-035-00

Contract: 54945

LWD Structure – Site E123, Modification of an existing deflector structure

Figure Name: Photo 3

Document ID: P123986

Document: Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration; 10/10 - 11/11

Page Number: 8

Project: 2000-035-00

Contract: 54945


Summary of Budgets

To view all expenditures for all fiscal years, click "Project Exp. by FY"

Expense SOY Budget Working Budget Contracted Amount Modified Contract Amount Expenditures *
FY2016 (Previous) $475,011 $432,484 $432,484 $370,701 $361,930

BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) $432,484 $432,484 $370,701 $361,930
FY2017 (Current) $650,011 $0 $0 $61,783 $199,272

BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) $0 $0 $61,783 $199,272
FY2018 (Next) $0 $0 $0 $0

* Expenditures data includes accruals and are based on data through 28-Feb-2017

Decided Budget Transfers  (FY2016 - FY2018)

Acct FY Acct Type Amount Fund Budget Decision Date
FY2016 Expense $650,011 From: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) FY16 Initial Planning Budgets - Expense 05/22/2015
FY2016 Expense $175,000 To: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) August FY15 Transfers 08/21/2015
FY2016 Expense $100,000 To: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) Oct FY16 Transfers 10/19/2015
FY2016 Expense $57,473 From: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) Oct FY17 Budget Uploads 10/20/2016
FY2017 Expense $650,011 From: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) FY17 SOY Budgets 06/02/2016
FY2017 Expense $57,473 To: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) Oct FY17 Budget Uploads 10/20/2016
FY2017 Expense $592,538 To: BiOp FCRPS 2008 (non-Accord) NPT Project Merges 10/25/2016

Pending Budget Decision?  No


Project Cost Share:

FY2016 0 %
FY2015 16 %
FY2014 23 %
FY2013 20 %
FY2012 15 %
FY2011 16 %
FY2010 5 %
FY2009 11 %
FY2008 12 %
FY2007 21 %
Fiscal Year Cost Share Partner Total Proposed
Contribution
Total Confirmed
Contribution
FY2015 US Forest Service (USFS) $121,087

Contracts

The table below contains contracts with the following statuses: Active, Complete, History, Issued.
Expense Contracts:
Number Contractor Name Title Status Contracted Amount Dates
4494 SOW Nez Perce Tribe 2000-35 REHABILITATE NEWSOME CREEK WATERSHED History $1,081,324 3/1/2001 - 8/31/2005
22930 SOW Nez Perce Tribe 2000-035-00 REHABILITATE NEWSOME CREEK WATERSHED History $233,518 9/1/2005 - 8/31/2007
28845 SOW Nez Perce Tribe 2000 035 00 NEWSOME CREEK WATERSHED RESTORATION History $136,418 9/1/2006 - 11/30/2007
71036 SOW Nez Perce Tribe 2000-035-00 EXP NPT NEWSOME CREEK RESTORATION Issued $432,484 12/1/2015 - 1/31/2017



Annual Progress Reports
Expected (since FY2004):14
Completed:12
On time:12
Status Reports
Completed:62
On time:38
Avg Days Late:1

Earliest Subsequent           Accepted Count of Contract Deliverables
Contract Contract(s) Title Contractor Start End Status Reports Complete Green Yellow Red Total % Green and Complete Canceled
4494 22930, 28845, 35879, 39822, 45425, 54945, 63168, 67263, 71036 2000-35 REHABILITATE NEWSOME CREEK WATERSHED Nez Perce Tribe 03/2001 03/2001 Issued 51 64 0 0 12 76 84.21% 5
32718 35896, 41040 2000 035 00 EXP USFS NEWSOME CREEK WATERSHED RESTORATION US Forest Service (USFS) 03/2007 03/2007 Closed 11 12 0 0 0 12 100.00% 0
Project Totals 62 76 0 0 12 88 86.36% 5


Review: 2013 Geographic Category Review

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2000-035-00-ISRP-20130610
Project: 2000-035-00 - Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration
Review: 2013 Geographic Category Review
Proposal Number: GEOREV-2000-035-00
Completed Date: 6/11/2013
Final Round ISRP Date: 6/10/2013
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
Final Round ISRP Comment:

1. Purpose: Significance to Regional Programs, Technical Background, and Objectives

This proposal for Newsome Creek, along with those for the Red River, and Crooked and American Rivers, is designed to restore habitat in the upper tributaries of the South Fork Clearwater River. The proposal includes a good summary of information relevant to the problems and limiting factors being addressed. Particularly helpful for this review were the concise summaries of the population units being targeted, their status, and their relationship to MPG and ESU viability assessments. The ISRP appreciated seeing consideration of Pacific lamprey and other trout species.

The objectives of the proposed work are clearly significant to regional programs. Two evaluations, the South Fork Clearwater Landscape Assessment and the Nez Perce Forest Plan, state that the South Fork and its upper tributaries have high potential for spring Chinook and steelhead production, mainly due to topography and lack of human development. Factors limiting the production of these species in Newsome Creek were recently updated by the FCRPS BiOp Expert Panel Process and presented in the Newsome Creek Ecosystem Analysis at the Watershed Scale (EAWS). The primary limiting factors are impacts caused by instream mining and dredge tailing placement, sedimentation due to roads, and fish passage barriers.

Of the project’s nine objectives, eight address the limiting factors listed above, and six explicitly list success criteria that can be measured. Desired end points for three other objectives, removing anthropogenic barriers, restoring wetlands, and reducing the impact of existing roads, were quantitative but not as fully developed. Criteria for Objectives 3 and 4 need continued refinement to tie them more directly to fish production in the project area. Also note that for Objective 4 there is a discrepancy between the success criterion in the objective (<20% cobble embeddedness) and the goal stated in the Results on page 12 (<30% cobble embeddedness). It remains unclear how the embeddedness criterion was developed.

The section on the proposed monitoring plan (pages 7-8) is well organized and helpful. The proposed case study for action effectiveness monitoring following mine tailing reclamation and stream reconstruction is good to see.

2. History: Accomplishments, Results, and Adaptive Management (Evaluation of Results)

The Newsome Creek Restoration project was planned as two phases. The goal of Phase One was to restore approximately 4 miles of stream in the upper watershed. So far, 2.25 miles of the stream has been restored, 106 LWD structures were added to the stream, and over 44,000 cubic yards of dredge mining tailings were removed. Two new meanders and five new side channels were constructed. The project also decommissioned 26 miles of unneeded roads and improved an additional 18 miles of roads to reduce instream sedimentation. An inventory of all the road crossings in the Newsome Creek project area was completed and passage barriers were prioritized. The two highest rated barriers, one at Mare Creek and another at Mule Creek, were corrected to open up six miles of habitat for anadromous salmonids. Phase Two will address 7 miles of channel from the town site downstream to the confluence with the South Fork Clearwater River.

This proposal demonstrates that advice from the ISRP's review in 2006 has been taken seriously as the monitoring and adaptive management components of the proposal are much improved. Personnel involved with this project were also monitoring and evaluating restoration projects in other parts of the South Fork Clearwater. Lessons learned there have helped to refine how new restoration work occurs in Newsome Creek. For example, tactics for placing large woody debris have changed from placing logs as point features to placing logs throughout the entire restored portion of the stream. The approach for removing and using mine tailings has also been adjusted. Initially, some tailings were to be left in the floodplain, but this plan was modified in favor of complete removal in order to restore the entire valley bottom.

An important statement is also made regarding this adaptive management: "Being able to use immediate adaptive management on this project has been a huge benefit, and has taken a 'ho-hum' conservative design with a high safety factor into a dynamic, connected stream system that has seen immediate benefits (which are discussed in the results section)." This is an excellent observation and a reminder to all involved, including reviewers, regarding the value of being able to think outside the usual guidelines to make adjustments.

It should be noted, however, that the description of adaptive management in the proposal implies a passive approach whereas the ISAB (see ISAB 2011-4) and ISRP promote active adaptive management. In the original definition of the term, adaptive management involves deliberate experimentation to reduce key uncertainties, with the goal of improving future decisions. This active approach places a value on knowledge to reduce uncertainty in the future as an outcome in itself and requires formulation of alternative hypotheses and an experimental design to test those hypotheses.

Evaluation of Results

This project first received funding in 2011 and has a strong performance record to date.

Phase One restoration of 2.25 miles of Newsome Creek, together with the obliteration of 26 miles of unneeded roads and improvement of 18 miles of remaining roads, has significantly decreased instream embeddedness and increased in pool depth. These rapid improvements are attributed primarily to modified flow due to the addition of LWD.

Floodplain area within the Phase One restoration site has been increased by 45%. Note that the EWAS grossly underestimated the quantity of dredge tailings in the watershed.

Removal of the two highest-priority barriers has opened up six miles of new habitat for anadromous fishes.

3. Project Relationships, Emerging Limiting Factors, and Tailored Questions

Collaboration with U.S. Forest Service staff stationed at the Nez Perce Clearwater National Forest is an important component of this project and the other three NPT restoration projects in the South Fork Clearwater River (Protect and Restore the Crooked River and American River Watersheds, Lower South Fork Clearwater River Watershed Restoration, and Red River Watershed Restoration) all of which share resources, personnel, and equipment with the Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration Project. Other projects that complement the Newsome Creek project are: The Nez Perce Tribal Hatchery, IDFG’s Red River Satellite Fish Hatchery, NPT’s B-run Steelhead Supplementation Effectiveness Research, and NPT’s Clearwater River Subbasin Focus Watershed Program.

Two emerging limiting factors, climate change and non-native species, were identified. The proposal includes some thoughtful consideration of how proposed actions could ameliorate predicted effects of climate change. Culvert and bridge crossings are designed to withstand 100-year floods. Removing passage barriers has been given a high priority to provide access to cool water refuges in higher portions of the watershed when needed. Riparian plantings and reconnections to the floodplain are expected to help dampen the effects of climate change and provide some cooling influence.

Invasive plants are currently not regarded as a significant problem in Newsome Creek, but weed treatment is routine on project sites where ground disturbance has occurred. Interactions between native salmonids and brook trout were mentioned as another possible emerging limiting factor. Brook trout are euthanized whenever they are captured in the project area to reduce the likelihood of deleterious interactions.

4. Deliverables, Work Elements, Metrics, and Methods

The project has six well-defined deliverables. The first deliverable, for example is to restore the Newsome Creek stream channel. To accomplish this, the sponsors will remove approximately 104,000 cubic yards of mine tailings, create at least five new meanders and side channels plus add LWD. Other deliverables are to re-vegetate riparian areas; decommission and improve roads, replace stream crossings that may interfere with fish passage, and perform effectiveness monitoring using the “Action Effectiveness of Tributary Habitat Improvement: a Programmatic Approach for the Columbia River Basin Fish and Wildlife Program” recently developed by Phil Roni and colleagues. The sponsors are currently working with Roni and other NOAA-Fisheries personnel to develop a monitoring plan specifically for Newsome Creek.


===========QUALIFICATIONS FOLLOW================

This strong proposal represents a significant move forward by explicitly integrating fish metrics into the objectives for habitat rehabilitation. The following qualifications are offered as advice to improve project design and monitoring, and should be addressed during contracting and subsequent proposals. No immediate response to the ISRP is required.

Note the ISRP's programmatic comments on the South Fork Clearwater projects and the NPT M&E Plan. Those comments reflect concerns about:

Qualification #1 - Qualification #1
How to achieve adequate status and trends monitoring given cessation of Idaho Supplementation Study in 2013, and uncertainty about initiation of CHaMP in this area, which would support inferences from ISEMP.
Qualification #2 - Qualification #2
How to justify habitat restoration given that past obstructions by Lewiston and Harpster dams have reduced current abundances of Chinook and steelhead adults in the South Fork Clearwater River and its tributaries to levels that are likely too low, even with supplementation, for their reproduction and growth to be limited by the spawning and rearing habitat currently available in these watersheds. Justification for habitat restoration in these watersheds appears to rest on the conviction that adult abundances will increase to recolonize available habitat ("build it and they will come"). Such an increase seems plausible, but no compelling evidence was presented to indicate that it is likely.
First Round ISRP Date: 6/10/2013
First Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
First Round ISRP Comment:

1. Purpose: Significance to Regional Programs, Technical Background, and Objectives

This proposal for Newsome Creek, along with those for the Red River, and Crooked and American Rivers, is designed to restore habitat in the upper tributaries of the South Fork Clearwater River. The proposal includes a good summary of information relevant to the problems and limiting factors being addressed. Particularly helpful for this review were the concise summaries of the population units being targeted, their status, and their relationship to MPG and ESU viability assessments. The ISRP appreciated seeing consideration of Pacific lamprey and other trout species.

The objectives of the proposed work are clearly significant to regional programs. Two evaluations, the South Fork Clearwater Landscape Assessment and the Nez Perce Forest Plan, state that the South Fork and its upper tributaries have high potential for spring Chinook and steelhead production, mainly due to topography and lack of human development. Factors limiting the production of these species in Newsome Creek were recently updated by the FCRPS BiOp Expert Panel Process and presented in the Newsome Creek Ecosystem Analysis at the Watershed Scale (EAWS). The primary limiting factors are impacts caused by instream mining and dredge tailing placement, sedimentation due to roads, and fish passage barriers.

Of the project’s nine objectives, eight address the limiting factors listed above, and six explicitly list success criteria that can be measured. Desired end points for three other objectives, removing anthropogenic barriers, restoring wetlands, and reducing the impact of existing roads, were quantitative but not as fully developed. Criteria for Objectives 3 and 4 need continued refinement to tie them more directly to fish production in the project area. Also note that for Objective 4 there is a discrepancy between the success criterion in the objective (<20% cobble embeddedness) and the goal stated in the Results on page 12 (<30% cobble embeddedness). It remains unclear how the embeddedness criterion was developed.

The section on the proposed monitoring plan (pages 7-8) is well organized and helpful. The proposed case study for action effectiveness monitoring following mine tailing reclamation and stream reconstruction is good to see.

2. History: Accomplishments, Results, and Adaptive Management (Evaluation of Results)

The Newsome Creek Restoration project was planned as two phases. The goal of Phase One was to restore approximately 4 miles of stream in the upper watershed. So far, 2.25 miles of the stream has been restored, 106 LWD structures were added to the stream, and over 44,000 cubic yards of dredge mining tailings were removed. Two new meanders and five new side channels were constructed. The project also decommissioned 26 miles of unneeded roads and improved an additional 18 miles of roads to reduce instream sedimentation. An inventory of all the road crossings in the Newsome Creek project area was completed and passage barriers were prioritized. The two highest rated barriers, one at Mare Creek and another at Mule Creek, were corrected to open up six miles of habitat for anadromous salmonids. Phase Two will address 7 miles of channel from the town site downstream to the confluence with the South Fork Clearwater River.

This proposal demonstrates that advice from the ISRP's review in 2006 has been taken seriously as the monitoring and adaptive management components of the proposal are much improved. Personnel involved with this project were also monitoring and evaluating restoration projects in other parts of the South Fork Clearwater. Lessons learned there have helped to refine how new restoration work occurs in Newsome Creek. For example, tactics for placing large woody debris have changed from placing logs as point features to placing logs throughout the entire restored portion of the stream. The approach for removing and using mine tailings has also been adjusted. Initially, some tailings were to be left in the floodplain, but this plan was modified in favor of complete removal in order to restore the entire valley bottom.

An important statement is also made regarding this adaptive management: "Being able to use immediate adaptive management on this project has been a huge benefit, and has taken a 'ho-hum' conservative design with a high safety factor into a dynamic, connected stream system that has seen immediate benefits (which are discussed in the results section)." This is an excellent observation and a reminder to all involved, including reviewers, regarding the value of being able to think outside the usual guidelines to make adjustments.

It should be noted, however, that the description of adaptive management in the proposal implies a passive approach whereas the ISAB (see ISAB 2011-4) and ISRP promote active adaptive management. In the original definition of the term, adaptive management involves deliberate experimentation to reduce key uncertainties, with the goal of improving future decisions. This active approach places a value on knowledge to reduce uncertainty in the future as an outcome in itself and requires formulation of alternative hypotheses and an experimental design to test those hypotheses.

Evaluation of Results

This project first received funding in 2011 and has a strong performance record to date.

Phase One restoration of 2.25 miles of Newsome Creek, together with the obliteration of 26 miles of unneeded roads and improvement of 18 miles of remaining roads, has significantly decreased instream embeddedness and increased in pool depth. These rapid improvements are attributed primarily to modified flow due to the addition of LWD.

Floodplain area within the Phase One restoration site has been increased by 45%. Note that the EWAS grossly underestimated the quantity of dredge tailings in the watershed.

Removal of the two highest-priority barriers has opened up six miles of new habitat for anadromous fishes.

3. Project Relationships, Emerging Limiting Factors, and Tailored Questions

Collaboration with U.S. Forest Service staff stationed at the Nez Perce Clearwater National Forest is an important component of this project and the other three NPT restoration projects in the South Fork Clearwater River (Protect and Restore the Crooked River and American River Watersheds, Lower South Fork Clearwater River Watershed Restoration, and Red River Watershed Restoration) all of which share resources, personnel, and equipment with the Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration Project. Other projects that complement the Newsome Creek project are: The Nez Perce Tribal Hatchery, IDFG’s Red River Satellite Fish Hatchery, NPT’s B-run Steelhead Supplementation Effectiveness Research, and NPT’s Clearwater River Subbasin Focus Watershed Program.

Two emerging limiting factors, climate change and non-native species, were identified. The proposal includes some thoughtful consideration of how proposed actions could ameliorate predicted effects of climate change. Culvert and bridge crossings are designed to withstand 100-year floods. Removing passage barriers has been given a high priority to provide access to cool water refuges in higher portions of the watershed when needed. Riparian plantings and reconnections to the floodplain are expected to help dampen the effects of climate change and provide some cooling influence.

Invasive plants are currently not regarded as a significant problem in Newsome Creek, but weed treatment is routine on project sites where ground disturbance has occurred. Interactions between native salmonids and brook trout were mentioned as another possible emerging limiting factor. Brook trout are euthanized whenever they are captured in the project area to reduce the likelihood of deleterious interactions.

4. Deliverables, Work Elements, Metrics, and Methods

The project has six well-defined deliverables. The first deliverable, for example is to restore the Newsome Creek stream channel. To accomplish this, the sponsors will remove approximately 104,000 cubic yards of mine tailings, create at least five new meanders and side channels plus add LWD. Other deliverables are to re-vegetate riparian areas; decommission and improve roads, replace stream crossings that may interfere with fish passage, and perform effectiveness monitoring using the “Action Effectiveness of Tributary Habitat Improvement: a Programmatic Approach for the Columbia River Basin Fish and Wildlife Program” recently developed by Phil Roni and colleagues. The sponsors are currently working with Roni and other NOAA-Fisheries personnel to develop a monitoring plan specifically for Newsome Creek.


===========QUALIFICATIONS FOLLOW================

This strong proposal represents a significant move forward by explicitly integrating fish metrics into the objectives for habitat rehabilitation. The following qualifications are offered as advice to improve project design and monitoring, and should be addressed during contracting and subsequent proposals. No immediate response to the ISRP is required.

Note the ISRP's programmatic comments on the South Fork Clearwater projects and the NPT M&E Plan. Those comments reflect concerns about:

Modified by Dal Marsters on 6/11/2013 11:45:32 AM.
Documentation Links:

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2000-035-00-NPCC-20131125
Project: 2000-035-00 - Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration
Review: 2013 Geographic Category Review
Proposal: GEOREV-2000-035-00
Proposal State: Pending BPA Response
Approved Date: 11/5/2013
Recommendation: Implement with Conditions
Comments: Implement through FY 2018: Sponsor should consider addressing ISRP qualification #2 in future reviews. See Programmatic Issue and Recommendation A for effectiveness monitoring (ISRP qualification #1).
Conditions:
Council Condition #1 ISRP Qualification: Qualification #1—See Programmatic Issue and Recommendation A for effectiveness monitoring (ISRP qualification #1).
Council Condition #2 ISRP Qualification: Qualification #2—Sponsor should consider addressing ISRP qualification #2 in future reviews.
Council Condition #3 Programmatic Issue: A. Implement Monitoring, and Evaluation at a Regional Scale—See Programmatic Issue and Recommendation A for effectiveness monitoring (ISRP qualification #1).
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review

Legal Assessment (In-Lieu)

Assessment Number: 2000-035-00-INLIEU-20090521
Project Number: 2000-035-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 10/6/2006
In Lieu Rating: No Problems Exist
Cost Share Rating: None
Comment: Multiple fish habitat restoration activities within Nez Perce National Forest; assume BPA-FS MOU applies.

Capital Assessment

Assessment Number: 2000-035-00-CAPITAL-20090618
Project Number: 2000-035-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 2/27/2007
Capital Rating: Does Not Qualify for Capital Funding
Capital Asset Category: None
Comment: None

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2000-035-00-ISRP-20060831
Project: 2000-035-00 - Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 8/31/2006
Final Round ISRP Date: None
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria (Qualified)
Final Round ISRP Comment:
The qualification is that the sponsors carry out a genuine geomorphic analysis to ensure the effectiveness of their instream work (see item 4, below).

The purpose of this project is to restore stream fish habitat from damage cause by human activities, mainly upland and riparian road building, excessive timber harvest, and mining. Proposed actions include reducing sediment input from roads, rehabilitating channel reaches damaged by dredge mining, and replacing culverts to allow fish passage. The focal species are Chinook salmon, Pacific lamprey, and steelhead. Non-focal species include bull, redband, westslope cutthroat and rainbow trout, as well as mountain whitefish. This project will benefit the focal species and non-focal species.

This proposal is well written and reasonably thorough. It contains comprehensive description of the problems. Significance to the subbasin plan and relationships to other projects are adequately shown. The ISRP asked the sponsors to respond on the following:

(1) The project history listed actions performed but did not present evidence of physical and biological results. Some data were presented in an appendix (not referred to in the project history), but without narrative interpretation, it was not always clear whether they represented benefits from the project's restorative efforts. The sponsors responded that the appendix data came only from pre-construction measurements in 2003 for project planning purposes. The only management completed to date is six miles of road decommissioning. Thus, little of the planned restoration work has been done, and no results exist. The sponsors are collecting more pre-restoration data.

(2) The project's objectives apparently came verbatim from the subbasin plan. They were arranged in no logical sequence but seemed to cover the problems. The long list of work elements and methods in Section F was not organized in hierarchical fashion to show how the elements related. The sponsors responded by pointing out that the organization of work elements by objective is better seen in that section's tables. The tables usefully supplement but do not substitute for narrative text, which needs to be more informative. This proposal, like several others did not incorporate much narrative into Section F (objectives, work elements and methods). This made it hard to know in many respects what is actually planned for the methods. The next problem relates to this.

(3) Some of the descriptions of methods were vague. For example, under work element 13, it was not said what would be done to increase "stream habitat complexity" (a vague concept—what are the units of complexity?). The sponsors stated they plan to modify instream structures built in the 1980s-1990s to bring them up to "today's design standards." The ISRP asked for descriptions of the structures involved, explanation of what is wrong with them, and descriptions of the new designs and how they will benefit fish. The sponsors responded that habitat complexity would involve "restructuring several reaches of the 4 mile section of mainstem Newsome Creek," that a feasibility study gave detailed reach drawings of conceptual channel alignment and tables on "what type and how many habitat units will be constructed." They included some of drawings in the response document.

The sponsors, in explaining why they feel some earlier artificial structures should be replaced, may reveal some misunderstanding about stream form and fish habitat. They say with respect to log structures that were placed perpendicular in the stream (and which create scours on the stream banks) that "today's design standards would put them more at a natural angle, therefore reducing bank scour." The ISRP points out that perpendicularity of logs to the stream course is not necessarily unnatural (logs can fall that way in nature) and need not cause bank erosion if suitably installed. Logs placed at some other angles can indeed have more beneficial effects than perpendicular installations, including diversion of current toward a stream bank to form a scour pool and undercut bank where fish will find shelter with drifting food within close reach.

The sponsors failed to respond on the question of how their work would benefit fish. They could have responded with information such as is shown in the last sentence in the preceding paragraph. However, the response information shows in general, by drawing on referenced documents, greater cognizance of fish habitat characteristics than the original proposal did. It includes a table showing intended quantifiable changes in physical parameters of the channel but does not indicate how this relates to fish.

(4) The ISRP asked that the response give detailed attention to geomorphic analysis of reaches affected by the mining, including the impacts of headward incision (disconnection of stream from floodplain, for example). The ISRP commented that it is imperative that the proposal incorporate these considerations. The sponsors responded that a major part of their feasibility study was "geomorphic analysis, including past, present, and the desired (as close to historic as possible) geomorphology of the stream," that the study analyzed current geomorphology of the stream in detail, and that "the final design for the stream rehabilitation will incorporate geomorphic analysis and potential impacts of headward incision as well as other issues such as sedimentation, gradient, sinuosity, etc."

This response indicates that the sponsors' understanding of geomorphic analysis is the past, present and desired future shape of the stream - in effect, three "snapshots." However, the analysis should include assessment of the dynamic changes taking place--incision or aggradation, for example. Unless the stream is assessed in this way, it is unlikely that the sponsors will know whether their proposed works will be scoured out or buried within a few years. The ISRP recommends the qualification that the sponsors will carry out a geomorphic analysis to ensure the effectiveness (including cost-effectiveness) of their instream work.

(5) The statistical design of the sampling and analysis involved in project monitoring and evaluation (M&E) (work elements 18 through 21) was missing. The proposed M&E was presented largely as a listing, rather than as a synthesized approach to identifying what is needed and describing how to measure it. The ISRP asked that this deficiency be corrected in a response. The response indicated that a more detailed M&E plan is being developed between agencies via consultation. It noted that this project was not designed to have extensive M&E, but rather to collect enough M&E data to evaluate project compliance and effectiveness.

(6) The ISRP recommended that, in the response loop, the Nez Perce Tribe prioritize and rank the numerous proposals submitted under "protect and restore" titles. This was covered in response attachments.

For full comments on "restore and protect" type projects, please see heading "General comments concerning Nez Perce Tribe proposals to protect and restore various watersheds" at the beginning of the ISRP comments on project # 199607702, Protect & Restore Lolo Creek Watershed.
Documentation Links:

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2000-035-00-NPCC-20090924
Project: 2000-035-00 - Newsome Creek Watershed Restoration
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Approved Date: 10/23/2006
Recommendation: Fund
Comments: 2007 Revised Budget: Weed program cut back to road decommissioning/improvement only, education component significantly reduced, road decomm/improvements significantly reduced or eliminated, stream/riparian/floodplain restoration reduced.

Project Relationships: This project Merged To 2002-072-00 effective on 11/1/2016
Relationship Description: Project 2000-035-00 is permanently merged to project 2002-072-00. The full budget and work elements from 2000-035-00 are merged into 2002-072-00 going forward.


Name Role Organization
Stephanie Bransford Project Lead Nez Perce Tribe
Paul Krueger (Inactive) Supervisor Bonneville Power Administration
Stephanie Breeden (Inactive) Interested Party Bonneville Power Administration
Michelle Guay Env. Compliance Lead Bonneville Power Administration
Marcie Carter Supervisor Nez Perce Tribe
Tracy Hauser Project Manager Bonneville Power Administration