The Beaver Creek Watershed includes 16 communities and stretches across 380 square miles within parts of six Iowa counties.
This watershed plan was prepared through a contract administered by Polk County, on behalf of the Beaver Creek Watershed Management Authority (WMA). RDG led a consultant team which included EOR (St. Paul, MN) and Snyder & Associates (Ankeny, IA) to develop the plan. Stakeholder engagement included two focus group workshops, monthly steering committee meetings and quarterly WMA board meetings. The final plan included detailed strategic plans for each of 11 subwatersheds. The plans included the optional mix of best management practices to achieve water quality and quantity improvement goals, with a projection of cost. Since watershed management authorities are authorities without authority, this plan depends on a mix of local communities, stakeholders and property owners to carry it out. Each community will need to take action to adopt the plan. Each jurisdiction will need to review their ordinances and policies to determine what changes are needed to carry out the recommendations of this plan. Projects will need to be incorporated into local budgets or alternative sources of funding (grants, etc.) pursued. Ongoing resources and staff will need to be committed to carrying out water quality monitoring and the education and collaboration plan. Most of all, this plan needs champions - devoted local advocates that are committed to making sure that it is carried to its conclusion.