Meeting Date:

August 16, 2010





Darby Fuerst


Riparian Mitigations


General Manager

Line Item No.: 



Prepared By:                  

Thomas Christensen

Cost Estimate: 



General Counsel Review:  N/A

Committee Recommendation:  The Administrative Committee considered this item on August 6, 2010 and recommended approval.

CEQA Compliance:  N/A


SUMMARY: The Board will consider authorizing staff to contract with the California Conservation Corps (CCC), which will provide a crew of approximately 15 workers to help District staff carry out vegetation management activities on the Carmel River during the fall of 2010.  Vegetation management this year will involve cutting, removing, and dragging large tree limbs out of the river bed and removing debris from the channel in preparation for potential high winter and spring river flows. The amount of work required this year warrants the use of CCC workers.  This program is conducted in accordance with the District’s “Guidelines for Vegetation Management and Removal of Deleterious Materials for the Carmel River Riparian Corridor.”  


RECOMMENDATION:  District staff recommends that the Board authorize the General Manager to enter into a contract with the California Conservation Corps for assistance with vegetation management in the Carmel River at a cost not-to-exceed $16,200.


BACKGROUND:      The District plans to perform in-channel vegetation management this fall at nine sites along the Carmel River.  Since 1998, the Carmel River has had relatively moderate hydrologic years, which has allowed vegetation to encroach into the channel.  As a result, there is an increased risk of streambank erosion along riverfront properties in several locations if winter flows rise above five-year return intervals (approximately 5,000 cubic feet per second).  Erosion can occur as high flows are directed away from the center of the channel by vegetation and debris dams into streambanks.


Nine areas impacted by vegetation encroachment in the channel bottom are proposed for selected vegetation removal:


1.      Ward Bridge Area: Beginning just upstream of a private bridge at River Mile (RM) 15.0, several large trees have fallen in the main channel. These trunks will be notched (partially cut) and branches will be trimmed.


2.      Robles Del Rio Bridge Area: Two reaches downstream of the Robles Del Rio Bridge (RM 14.5) extending approximately 100 feet each have trees growing on mid-channel gravel bars.  These trees will be trimmed and some of the larger ones removed.


3.      DeDampierre Area: Two reaches upstream of the DeDampierre area (Little League ball fields near Carmel Valley Village) at RM 14.2 need trimming. Multiple trees growing on mid-channel bars will be removed.


4.      Boronda Road Bridge Area: One reach upstream of the Boronda Road Bridge (RM 12.7) has a large tree that has fallen across the channel. Some branches will be trimmed and the trunk notched.


5.      Garland Park (Don Juan Bridge) Area: Two reaches, one upstream of the Don Juan Bridge (RM 10.8) and one downstream, will have trees trimmed, and some trees growing on gravel bars and side areas will be removed. 


6.      Scarlett Area: Two reaches in the Scarlett Area (RM 9.0) will be opened up. The first is a dry overflow channel. In the second reach, beginning at the Scarlett Restoration Project and extending approximately 150 feet downstream, trees blocking the channel on a gravel bar will be removed.


7.  Red Rock Area: Beginning at the upstream end of the Red Rock Restoration Project (RM 8.4) and extending 150 feet downstream, trees blocking the channel on a gravel bar will be thinned.


8.  Rancho Cañada Area: Beginning approximately at RM 2.5 in the reach that runs through the Rancho Cañada Golf Course, encroaching vegetation will be trimmed back.


9.  Highway One Bridge Area: Beginning just downstream of Highway One Bridge (RM 1.0), encroaching vegetation will be trimmed back. 


A width of up to 40 feet of open channel is desired.  A total of approximately 2,400 lineal feet of stream encompassing approximately 0.55 acre in the channel bottom will be affected by the vegetation removal.


Woody species in the center of the channel, including sycamore, alder, cottonwood, and willow, will be cut by hand using chainsaws, loppers, and other hand tools.  As described in MPWMD’s “Guidelines for Vegetation Management and Removal of Deleterious Materials for the Carmel River Riparian Corridor,” a minimum of vegetation will be removed in order to maintain an open passage for flow and debris.


The District has used CCC workers on several occasions in the past when vegetation management activities have been on a scale large enough that District staff cannot reasonably remove all the debris and slash created from opening up the main channel.


 IMPACT ON STAFF/RESOURCES:  It is anticipated that a fifteen-person CCC crew at a cost of $2,700 per day will be required for six days. The total not-to exceed amount for the contract is $16,200.  Funds for this work are included in the Fiscal Year 2010-11 Budget under Project Expenditures, Item 2-1-4: “Address vegetation hazards; remove trash from channel” - $18,000 total, Account No. 4-03-7870.40.  The staff person responsible for administration of the contract and supervision of the work is Thomas Christensen, the District’s Riparian Project Coordinator.