Title page for ETD etd-04222002-170513

Type of Document Major Paper
Author Gorder, Joel Steven
URN etd-04222002-170513
Title Statewide Watershed Management Effects on Local Watershed Groups: A Comparison of Wisconsin, Kentucky, and Virginia
Degree Master of Architecture
Department Urban Affairs and Planning
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Randolph, John Committee Chair
Carmin, Joann S. Committee Member
Richardson, Jesse J. Committee Member
  • Stakeholders
  • Collaboration
  • Watershed Group
  • Watershed Management
Date of Defense 2001-12-13
Availability unrestricted
While there are no federal mandates for states to establish watershed management

frameworks, many states see the benefits of doing so and have established such

approaches. The main advantage of statewide watershed management over traditional

resource management is the cost effectiveness and the formation of integrated solutions

to water quality problems. Statewide watershed frameworks provide a geographic focus

and partnerships in order to develop comprehensive solutions to water quality problems.

Watershed management depends on the participation of the local community and its

organizations. Local watershed groups formed within in the community become integral

members of these partnerships because of their vested interest in the watershed. Federal,

state, and local governments recognize the functions that watershed groups serve, and

how important they are in developing guiding principles for the watersheds. However,

since watershed management at the state level is relatively new and constantly evolving,

the exact roles of where watershed groups fit into this framework and the amount of

technical, educational, and financial support given to them is not yet fully defined.

Because this relationship is not clearly defined, watershed groups often encounter

obstacles that may inhibit them from reaching their full potential. There are six common

factors shown to be effective in fostering the relationship between the states and local

watershed groups. These include: having one central agency in charge of coordinating

watershed management activities, state funding support for local watershed groups, state

support for research, experimentation, and pilot projects, state facilitation of technical

assistance and support, state support for public education on water quality issues, open

forums where all stakeholders can voice their concerns and opinions.

This paper outlines the watershed management framework of three states: Wisconsin,

Kentucky, and Virginia. It explores the question: What educational, political, and

financial assistance do these states offer in order to create a collaborative environment in

which grassroot watershed groups have the capacity to make informed decisions affecting

the outcome of their watershed? This paper evaluates each state on how well they have

incorporated the six common factors into their watershed frameworks.

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