Watershed Rehabilitation Program

To provide technical and financial assistance to rehabilitate dams originally constructed with assistance of USDA Watershed Programs.

Rehabilitation must extend the life of the dam and meet applicable safety and performance standards.

Priority is given to dams that could result in loss
of life if the dam should fail.
Related Programs

Examples of Funded Projects

Since 2002, Federal assistance for watershed rehabilitation has been provided on 72 watershed projects.

This program provides technical and financial assistance to State agencies and units of local government in addressing public health and safety concerns with homes and businesses downstream from the dams.

These projects also reduce flooding and sediment damage some projects also include the development of multipurpose facilities for such uses as recreation, improvement of fish and wild-life habitat, irrigation, and water supply to municipal and industrial users.

Examples: watershed rehabilitation projects protect public health and safety of residents in the communities of Gwinnett County, Georgia (Yellow River Watershed); McKinney, Texas (East Fork Above Lavon Creek Watershed); Ramon, Oklahoma (Double Creek Watershed), and Carlsbad, New Mexico (Hackberry Draw Watershed).


Agency - Department of Agriculture

Established in 1862, the Department of Agriculture serves all Americans through anti-hunger efforts, stewardship of nearly 200 million acres of national forest and rangelands, and through product safety and conservation efforts. The USDA opens markets for American farmers and ranchers and provides food for needy people around the world.

Office - For list of NRCS State offices with telephone numbers and addresses, see Appendix IV of the Catalog.


Program Accomplishments

Not available at this time.

Uses and Use Restrictions

Technical assistance is provided in planning, designing, and implementing watershed rehabilitation works of improvement.

Financial assistance is provided for sharing costs of measures for watershed rehabilitation projects.

Watershed rehabilitation projects may include reconstruction or decommissioning of the dam and relocation or flood proofing of downstream property.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Sponsoring local organizations for existing watershed projects that include dams that were originally constructed with assistance from one of the following water resource programs: Public Law 78-534, Section 13 of the Flood Control Act of 1944; Public Law 156-67, the pilot watershed program authorized under the heading Flood Prevention of the Department of Agriculture Appropriation Act of 1954; Public Law 83-566, the Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Act of 1954; and Subtitle H of Title XV of the Agriculture and Flood Act of 1981, commonly known as the Resource Conservation and Development Program.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Any State agency, county or groups of counties, municipality, town or township, soil and water conservation district, flood prevention or flood control district, Indian tribe or tribal organization, or any other nonprofit agency with authority under State law to carry out, maintain, and operate watershed works of improvement may become a sponsoring local organization for a watershed rehabilitation project.

Credentials/Documentation

Applications must designate the proposed dam to be rehabilitated, be properly signed and attested to by all sponsoring local organizations of the existing watershed, and set forth the need for the proposed project.

Aplication and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

The standard application forms, as furnished by the Federal agency and required by OMB Circular No.

A-102, must be used for this program.

Environmental assessments or an Environmental impact statement are required for all projects.

This program is eligible for coverage under E.O.

12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the Single Point of Contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Application Procedures

The standard application forms, as furnished by the Federal agency and required by OMB Circular No. A-102, must be used for this program. Environmental assessments or an Environmental impact statement are required for all projects. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the Single Point of Contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Award Procedures

Applications are evaluated by analyzing the condition of the dam and consequences of failure of the dam. The State Dam Safety Agency is also consulted for input. Details of the procedure are available from the State Offices of the Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Deadlines

None.

Authorization

Watershed Protection and Flood Prevention Act, Public Law 83-566, 68 Stat. 666, as amended; Public Law 84-1018, 70 Stat. 1088; Public Law 85-624, 72 Stat. 563; Public Law 85-865, 72 Stat. 1605; Public Law 86-468, 74 Stat. 131, 132; Public Law 86-545, 74 Stat. 254; Public Law 87-170, 75 Stat. 408; Public Law 87-703, 76 Stat. 608; Public Law 89-337, 79 Stat. 1300; Public Law 90-361, 82 Stat. 250; Public Law 92-419, 86 Stat. 667; Public Law 95-113, 91 Stat. 913; Public Law 97-98, 95 Stat. 1213; Public Law 99-662, 100 Stat. 4196; Public Law 101-624, 104 Stat. 3359. Public Law 106-472, 114 Stat. 2077; Public Law 107-171, 116 Stat. 274.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Receipt of the application is acknowledged as soon as it is determined to be valid.

Appeals

Not applicable.

Renewals

Not applicable.

Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Federal funds may be available for 65 percent of the total rehabilitation project cost, but shall not exceed 100 percent of the actual construction cost incurred. The total rehabilitation project cost includes land acquisition, easements, construction, and non-federal technical assistance and project administration. The cost of technical assistance provided by the natural Resources Conservation Service is not considered as part of the total rehabilitation project cost. The sponsoring local organizations shall be responsible for the cost of all water, mineral, and other resource rights, and cost of permits which are not part of the total rehabilitation project cost. Costs associated with adding new purposes to the watershed rehabilitation project may be cost-shared according to provisions of the Watershed Projection and Flood Prevention Act.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Continues until all works of improvement are installed or their installation is terminated by mutual agreement.

Post Assistance Requirements

Reports

Annual operation and maintenance inspection and report.

Audits

In accordance with the provisions of 7 CFR Part 3052, "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Nonprofit Organizations," which implement OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Nonprofit Organizations," nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance of $500,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Nonfederal entities that expend less than $500,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 7 CFR 3052.

Records

Records of operation and maintenance activities are maintained for the life of the project.

Financial Information

Account Identification

12-1002-0-1-301.

Obigations

(Financial Assistance) FY 07 $8,262,000; FY 08 est not available; and FY 09 est not reported. (Salaries and Expenses) FY 07 $7,038,000; FY 08 est not available; and FY 09 est not reported.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

(per State) $0 to $6,451,000; $770,000 average per state.

Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature

Policy for implementation of this program is contained in the National Watershed Manual and NRCS General Manual. Program fact sheets, case studies, and guidelines are available from NRCS State Offices and can also be accessed through the NRCS website (www.nrcs.usda.gov).

Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

For list of NRCS State offices with telephone numbers and addresses, see Appendix IV of the Catalog.

Headquarters Office

Watersheds and Wetlands Division, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Department of Agriculture, P.O. Box 2890, Washington, DC 20013. Telephone: (202) 720-3534. http://www.nrcs.usda.gov.

Criteria for Selecting Proposals

(1) The existing watershed project must meet the requirements of the law; (2) operation and maintenance of the existing dam must be current; (3) the local sponsors must agree to carry out the watershed project including acquiring land rights, permits, local cost-share, and operating and maintaining the rehabilitated dam for the life of the project; (4) the project has environmental, economic and social benefits that exceed the costs for a favorable benefit-cost ratio.



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