Consider Expenditure of Budgeted Funds to Contract with DHDettman to Complete the Rescue and Rearing Management Plan for the Sleepy Hollow Steelhead Rearing Facility and Other Facility Support Tasks


Meeting Date:

October 15, 2007


FY 2007-08



David A. Berger,


Project Expenditures


General Manager

Line Item No.: 

2-3-1 J.


Prepared By:

Kevan Urquhart

Cost Estimate:



General Counsel Approval:  N/A

Committee Recommendation:  The Administrative Committee considered this item on October 4, 2007 and recommended approval.

CEQA Compliance:  N/A


SUMMARY:  The Board will consider authorizing the General Manager to enter into a contract with DHDettman, Aquatic Biologist (DHDettman) for an amount not-to-exceed $22,065, to complete a draft Rescue and Rearing Management Plan (RRMP) for the District’s Sleepy Hollow Steelhead Rearing Facility (SHSRF) and assist with emergency repairs.  The RRMP must be completed before the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) will issue the District a Section 10 incidental take permit for continued operation of the SHSRF.  The Section 10 permit is needed because the Carmel River steelhead population has been listed as a threatened species under the Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA).  The District is allowed to operate the SHSRF while its Section 10 application is being processed.  Once the draft RRMP is complete, it will be published in the Federal Register for public review and comment.  District staff selected DHDettman for this work because of the consultant’s familiarity with the design, construction, and operation of the SHSRF.  Based on this experience and expertise, District staff believes that DHDettman will provide the most cost-effective and timely assistance in completing the RRMP and aiding with emergency repairs. 


RECOMMENDATION:  Staff recommends that the Board approve expenditure of the funds in the not-to-exceed amount of $22,065 to contract with DHDettman to complete a draft of the RRMP, and provide ongoing support for emergency repairs at the SHSRF, if needed.  The Administrative Committee considered this matter at its October 4, 2007 meeting and voted 3 to 0 to recommend Board approval.    


IMPACT ON FISCAL AND STAFF RESOURCES:  The funds for the contract proposed in Exhibits 6-A, 6-B, & 6-C are included in the Fiscal Year 2007-2008 budget under Project Expenditures, Line Item No. 2-3-1 J., Consulting Services.  The amount is less than the budgeted total, but approximately $2,000 of the budgeted amount have already been expended for DHDettman’s assistance with emergency repairs at the SHSRF this Fiscal Year, which were authorized under a short term contract from the General Manager on July 19, 2007. 


BACKGROUND:  The MPWMD operates and maintains the SHSRF as an integral component of the Mitigation Program for the MPWMD Water Allocation Program, and following its mission statement and legislative directive to manage, augment and protect water resources for the benefit of the community and environment. The SHSRF serves as a temporary holding and rearing environment for fish that are rescued from habitats in the lower Carmel River, as the surface flow recedes and the river dries up due to annual groundwater pumping.


In 1997, steelhead in south-central California were listed as threatened under the Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA).  In 2000, the NMFS promulgated Section 4d rules for protecting steelhead. Under the 4d rules, the District is required to obtain an ESA Section 10 permit for its activities which potentially result in take of steelhead, but otherwise do not require separate consultation under the ESA.  Even activities that are designed to benefit or recover listed species are required to obtain regulatory approval. In this case, MPWMD activities to rescue, capture, transport and rear steelhead are within the purview of the 4d rules and require a permit.  The District applied for the Section 10 Permit in 2001, but coordination with the NMFS on the application did not begin in earnest until 2005. 


In 2005, the MPWMD convened a Technical Advisory Committee, comprised of representatives from MPWMD, CDFG, NMFS, Carmel River Steelhead Association, and Monterey Bay Salmon and Trout Project, to begin working on the RRMP.  To date, portions of a working draft have been prepared for specific subjects, review and comment; while other required subject areas have not been addressed.  Both the NMFS and CDFG have requested that MPWMD embark on a more aggressive schedule for completing the RRMP.  This has not occurred to date, due to staff workload conflicts with the ongoing fish rescues and operation of the SHSRF, which consumed most of the staff’s time for all but two months of  Fiscal Year 2006-07. 


The primary purpose of this contract is for DHDettman to assist MPWMD in obtaining its Section 10 permit by consulting with NMFS, CDFG, MPWMD, and other interested parties and providing a Draft Rescue and Rearing Plan for Sleepy Hollow Steelhead Rearing Facility for submittal in support of the District’s Section 10 permit application to NMFS.  Generally, the development of this plan follows a format required of hatchery operations in the Pacific Northwest and is divided into ten subject areas.  Thus, tasks #1 through #10 in the Scope of Work (Exhibit 6-A) are organized according to the NMFS required format, not necessarily in order of anticipated completion. 


The secondary purpose of this contract is represented by Task #11 in the Scope of Work (Exhibit 6-A) to allow DHDettman to provide on-call services for urgent repairs needed at the SHSRF.  DHDettman is the designer of, and was the project manager for the construction of the SHSRF, so is more familiar with it than any other person.  The rate that DHDettman is proposing for on-call services is approximately 33% less than what would be charged for emergency response by the available high voltage electrical contractors, generator service repairmen, or agricultural pump and plumbing contractors that the District normally uses for regular repairs and maintenance at the SHSRF.  In addition, DHDettman’s familiarity with the SHSRF enables him to diagnose problems far faster than any on-call service person could, who might be mostly unfamiliar with the layout of the SHSRF, thereby having to spend considerable time reviewing as-built blueprints or wiring diagrams before beginning repair or diagnosis of the SHSRF’s systems.


Also attached are a Fee Schedule for each task, including the estimated time to be allocated to it, and a not-to-exceed cost for Tasks #1 through #10 (Exhibit 6-B), and a proposed Work Schedule for Tasks #1 through #10 (Exhibit 6-C).



6-A      Scope of Work provided by DHDettman.

6-B      Fee Schedule provided by DHDettman.

6-C      Work Schedule provided by DHDettman.