ITEM:††††††††††††††††††††††† INFORMATIONAL ITEMS/STAFF REPORTS

 

27.†††††† QUARTERLY CARMEL RIVER EROSION PROTECTION AND RESTORATION REPORT

 

Meeting Date: †††††††† July 21, 2003††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Budgeted: N/A

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Program/Line Item No.:N/A

Staff Contact:†††††††††††† Larry Hampson††††††††††††††††††††† Cost Estimate:N/A

 

General Counsel Approval: N/A

Committee Recommendation: N/A

CEQA Compliance:N/A

 

Carmel River Large Woody Debris Inventory:The District received a summary report, maps, and database files for incorporation into the District's geographic information system.  The study, conducted under contract with the Watershed Institute at California State University Monterey Bay documented approximately 150 accumulations of large wood along eight miles of the river.  High flows in early December 2002 halted data gathering efforts. The report states that large wood accumulations are sparse.More than half of the large wood surveyed had no effect on streambank stability.Approximately one-quarter of the wood surveyed appeared to have a positive effect (i.e., help to stabilize a bank).  Less than 10% of the wood surveyed appeared to have a negative effect on streambanks.  A complete survey of the river is planned for summer/fall 2003. 

 

Carmel River Grant Applications:  MPWMD submitted two grant applications in May 2003 to the California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG) requesting funds for the following projects: 1) to study potential sites along the Carmel River that would be appropriate for the placement of large wood, and 2) placement of large wood and rock habitat structures in the channel of the Carmel River at Garland Park.

 

Study of Potential Large Wood Installation Sites: MPWMD proposes to conduct an assessment along 14 miles of the Carmel River between approximately Highway 1 and Camp Steffani to determine appropriate locations for the placement of permanent large wood habitat structures in the bottom of the river channel.These habitat structures will benefit all life cycle phases of native Carmel River steelhead and several other aquatic species found in the Carmel River such as California red-legged frogs and Western pond turtles.†† Large wood increases channel complexity by scouring pools and flushing sediments, while also creating local cover.The study is planned to be a cooperative effort between MPWMD, the Watershed Institute at California State University Monterey Bay (CSUMB), Balance Hydrologics, Inc. and the Carmel River Watershed Council (CRWC).  This project would build on the information previously gathered in the ďCarmel River Large Woody Debris InventoryĒ (see above).The total cost of the study is estimated to be $58,600, with MPWMD and CRWC in-kind services valued at $15,400 and the remainder of the cost, approximately $43,200, for contract work with CSUMB and Balance Hydrologics, Inc.Work could be completed by the fall of 2004.

 

Large Wood and Rock Habitat Structures at Garland Park:This proposed project is similar to the large wood installation project completed in October 2002 at the MPWMD-sponsored deDampierre Restoration Project.  In April 2003, MPWMD presented a new proposal for large wood installation to the Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District Board of Directors, who approved access and project installation at Garland Ranch Regional Park. This project will benefit steelhead, California red-legged frogs, Western pond turtles and other aquatic species.The estimated cost of the project, including MPWMD staff time, is approximately $46,000 with MPWMD in-kind services valued at approximately $16,000 and the remainder of the cost, approximately $30,0000, for contract work. As of April 2003, the University of California at Santa Cruz and the Big Creek Lumber Company had logs available to donate to projects such as these that enhance the environment. MPWMD will provide in-kind services for environmental review, permit acquisition, design, contract administration, and construction management.Contract work includes heavy equipment and materials necessary to install rock and log structures.In-stream work could be completed in the fall of 2004.

 

The Monterey County Fish and Game Commission (Commission) denied the Districtís application for grant funds for continuing a large wood study along the Carmel River.  The Commission receives a portion of the fines collected by CDFG for violations of Fish and Game code to fund local projects.

 

Carmel River Watershed Council (CRWC) Coordination:MPWMD provided CRWC with web-ready copies of selected photographs from the Districtís archives.Photos included images of San Clemente Dam and Reservoir, floods in 1958 and 1995, bank and slide erosion in the 1970ís and 1980ís and MPWMD-sponsored restoration sites.MPWMD is cooperating with the CRWC in an assessment of the Carmel River watershed.The assessment is scheduled to be completed in 2004 and will be available for viewing on the CRWC website.

 

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) Permit for Carmel River Activities:   MPWMD concluded formal consultation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries Service concerning MPWMD's proposed maintenance and restoration activities in the Carmel River.   A revised project description for a Regional General Permit was transmitted to the Corps in July 2003 with a request to continue processing the District's application for a long-term permit to conduct restoration of riparian habitat and to carry out maintenance work along the Carmel River between Highway 1 and San Clemente Dam.The permit streamlines the normally lengthy process of obtaining Federal authorization for work in the river and sets out a framework for the conduct of such projects.

 

Carmel River Advisory Committee:The Committee held a regular meeting on June 12, 2003.Minutes will be provided to the Board in a future report.Staff launched a new web page on the Districtís web site containing information on the Carmel River Advisory Committee and its activities.Future additions to the site are planned including making CRAC meeting agendas, packets, and minutes available on the web.

 

Restoration Project Photos on the MPWMD Web Site:MPWMD began placing photographic documentation of District-sponsored restoration projects on the District website (see http://www.mpwmd.dst.ca.us/programs/river/restprojs/restoration.htm).As time and staff resources permit, additional information on the Districtís many river projects will be placed on the website.

 

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