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Project Summary

Project 2007-113-00 - Cowiche Restore And Protect
Project Number:
Cowiche Restore And Protect
The goal of the Cowiche Restoration and Protection Project is to protect stream, riparian and floodplain habitat and functions along Cowiche Creek. The project will acquire perpetual conservation easements along Cowiche Creek and its tributaries. This project will protect more than five miles of critical stream, riparian, and floodplain habitat for anadromous fish. It will also enhance downstream restoration efforts currently underway on Cowiche Creek by providing quality spawning and rearing habitat. Downstream projects include: barrier removal (existing projects will provide full anadromous access to the project site), water diversion screening, habitat protection (Snow Mt. Ranch others in negotiations), and placing water rights into trust for instream flows. This project will protect critical habitat for federally listed steelhead and bull trout (bull trout population condition and abundance are currently unknown), resident species including west-slope cutthroat, and coho.

Protection of this vital habitat is needed to prevent further subdivisions and development. The primary landowner (owns approximately 4,500 acres with more than four miles of critical stream habitat) has signed a letter of intent to sell a conservation easement. The project proposes to purchase up to 500 foot conservation easements on both sides of the creek. Funding granted from BPA will be matched with Washington Salmon Recovery Funding Board and Washington Wildlife and Recreation Program Grants totaling nearly 1.1 million dollars.
Proponent Orgs:
Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) (Govt - State)
Starting FY:
Ending FY:
Province Subbasin %
Columbia Plateau Yakima 100.00%
Focal Species:
Steelhead - Middle Columbia River DPS
Species Benefit:
Anadromous: 100.0%   Resident: 0.0%   Wildlife: 0.0%
BiOp Association:
FCRPS 2008 – view list of FCRPS 2008 BiOp Actions

Tributary Habitat Implementation 2007 to 2009,
Tributary Habitat Implementation 2007 to 2009,
Tributary Habitat Implementation 2007 to 2009

No photos have been uploaded yet for this Project.

Summary of Budgets

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

To see more detailed project budget information, please visit the "Project Budget" page

No Decided Budget Transfers

Pending Budget Decision?  No

Actual Project Cost Share

Current Fiscal Year — 2024
Cost Share Partner Total Proposed Contribution Total Confirmed Contribution
There are no project cost share contributions to show.
Previous Fiscal Years
Fiscal Year Total Contributions % of Budget
2008 $0 0%
2007 $0 0%


The table below contains contracts with the following statuses: Active, Closed, Complete, History, Issued.
* "Total Contracted Amount" column includes contracted amount from both capital and expense components of the contract.
Expense Contracts:
Number Contractor Name Title Status Total Contracted Amount Dates
35712 SOW Washington Resource Conservation and Development 200711300 EXP COWICHE RESTORE AND PROTECT History $0 9/30/2007 - 9/29/2008
BPA-003589 Bonneville Power Administration TBL Work on easement acquisition Active $0 9/30/2007 - 9/29/2008
BPA-005560 Bonneville Power Administration Land (City of Yakima/Oak Property) Active $300,000 10/1/2007 - 9/30/2008

Annual Progress Reports
Expected (since FY2004):0
On time:0
Status Reports
On time:3
Avg Days Late:0

                Count of Contract Deliverables
Earliest Contract Subsequent Contracts Title Contractor Earliest Start Latest End Latest Status Accepted Reports Complete Green Yellow Red Total % Green and Complete Canceled
35712 200711300 EXP COWICHE RESTORE AND PROTECT Washington Resource Conservation and Development 09/30/2007 09/29/2008 History 3 0 0 4 0 4 0.00% 4
BPA-3589 TBL Work on easement acquisition Bonneville Power Administration 09/30/2007 09/29/2008 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
BPA-5560 Land (City of Yakima/Oak Property) Bonneville Power Administration 10/01/2007 09/30/2008 Active 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Project Totals 3 0 0 4 0 4 0.00% 4

The table content is updated frequently and thus contains more recent information than what was in the original proposal reviewed by ISRP and Council.

Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review

Council Recommendation

Assessment Number: 2007-113-00-NPCC-20090924
Project: 2007-113-00 - Cowiche Restore And Protect
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Approved Date: 10/23/2006
Recommendation: Fund
Comments: Consider funding out of land/water acquisition project.

Independent Scientific Review Panel Assessment

Assessment Number: 2007-113-00-ISRP-20060831
Project: 2007-113-00 - Cowiche Restore And Protect
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 8/31/2006
Final Round ISRP Date: None
Final Round ISRP Rating: Meets Scientific Review Criteria
Final Round ISRP Comment:
This proposal requests the majority of its funding for the acquisition of the conservation easement in 2007. This project is an important component of the effort to restore the Cowiche watershed. A combination of factors support funding: the area where the easements will be secured is a location where subdivision and more intensive land-use seems likely to occur, and this site is significant for the focal species. The project is one of the few easement/acquisition plans that has a strong biological justification.

Long-term benefits from the conservation easement should be significant for spring chinook, steelhead, and coho, if development is prohibited/deterred for a long time. The establishment of riparian reserves at the project site should offer positive benefits to riparian wildlife. Non-focal aquatic species also should benefit from the added habitat protection. There should be no negative impacts.

Monitoring is going to be done by others, but it appears adequate. Coordination with other efforts downstream looks good because several recently completed downstream projects have removed almost all of the passage obstructions.

Other Comments:

Technical and scientific background: The background information and description of the problem is fully described. The risk of subdivision of the project property and the consequent degradation of habitat quality would be unfortunate given the amount of effort that has gone into improving access for anadromous fishes to this watershed. This section of the proposal does a very good job in describing how this project/land acquisition in Cowiche Creek will fit in with other closely linked projects to help in the restoration and protection of high priority habitat for spring chinook, steelhead, and coho. Documentation is generally good but could be improved by describing the status of non-target focal species -- bull trout, westslope cutthroat, and coho -- that this project would impact, and documenting the current condition of the riparian zone in the area in question (and will it require a substantial restoration effort).

Rationale and significance to subbasin plans and regional programs: This project is closely linked to the Yakima Subbasin Plan and the Yakima Subbasin Salmon Recovery Plan objectives as indicated in the Background section (even though it doesn't do this in this section).

Relationships to other projects: The relationship to other projects in the Cowiche watershed are fully described and the degree of coordination among these efforts is impressive.

Objectives: The objectives are appropriate, and the rationale for attempting to achieve the primary objective (habitat protection) at this site is well substantiated.

Timelines are not given, but the budget section only requests funding for FY2007, so the easement would have to occur in the next fiscal year.

Tasks (work elements) and methods: The work elements are fairly simple and involve establishing the value of the easement or land purchase and negotiation with the landowner. The work elements are appropriate for the objective.

Monitoring and evaluation: The evaluation of project effectiveness will be included in a watershed-scale assessment. The fact that adult steelhead entering the watershed and smolts leaving are being monitored should provide a very good indication of the cumulative effect of all the projects being implemented in the watershed on this species. There is no indication that the secondary focal species (coho, bull trout and cutthroat) will be monitored. Given that this effort is part of an integrated attempt to restore the watershed, these species also should be considered in the monitoring effort. There is no mention of habitat or water quality monitoring. More detail on the monitoring program would be required to fully assess the adequacy of the effort.

Facilities, equipment, and personnel appear to be appropriate, although no resumes for project PIs are provided.

Information transfer: There is a formal presentation "How to Restore a tributary watershed" to be made to Yakima F&W Board, local community, etc., to describe the Cowiche restoration effort. This should be a good tool for public outreach. Some of the monitoring work should be communicated through traditional scientific channels. There is no mention of this in the proposal.
Documentation Links:

Legal Assessment (In-Lieu)

Assessment Number: 2007-113-00-INLIEU-20090521
Project Number: 2007-113-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 10/6/2006
In Lieu Rating: Problems May Exist
Cost Share Rating: 2 - May be reasonable
Comment: Anadromous fish habitat acquisition.

Capital Assessment

Assessment Number: 2007-113-00-CAPITAL-20090618
Project Number: 2007-113-00
Review: FY07-09 Solicitation Review
Completed Date: 2/27/2007
Capital Rating: Does Not Qualify for Capital Funding
Capital Asset Category: None
Comment: None

Project Relationships: None

Name Role Organization
Jay Marcotte (Inactive) Project Manager Bonneville Power Administration
Dave Myra (Inactive) Project Lead Washington Resource Conservation and Development
Dawn Boorse (Inactive) Env. Compliance Lead Bonneville Power Administration
Peter Lofy Supervisor Bonneville Power Administration