STRATEGIC PLANNING FOR THE RESTORATION AND CONSERVATION OF HABITAT AND SPECIES WITHIN THE GREAT LAKES BASIN

Submitted to the United States Army Corps of Engineers May 15th, 2010

Submitted by:

12801 Auburn Street Detroit, Michigan 48223 Phone: 313-544-7117 Fax: 313-544-7111

2200 Commonwealth Blvd, Suite 300 Ann Arbor, Michigan 48105 Phone: 734-769-3004 Fax: 734-769-3164

This project was funded by financial support from the United States Army Corps of Engineers under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
We would like to acknowledge the Buffalo and Chicago Districts of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) for funding this important initiative. Specifically, thanks are due to Mr. Michael Greer of USACE-Buffalo district and Mr. Jan Miller of USACE-Chicago district, for leading all components of this project. Many experts contributed their time, efforts, and talent toward the preparation of this report. The Project Team acknowledges the contributions of each of the following members of the Habitat & Species Work Group of the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration, and thanks them for their efforts: • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Mr. David Brakhage, Ducks Unlimited, Inc. Mr. Reggie Cadotte, Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission Mr. Leon M. Carl, U.S. Geological Survey, Great Lakes Science Center Ms. Rita Cestaric, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO) Mr. Craig Czarnecki, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service LTC James Davis, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Detroit District Mr. Tim Eder, Great Lakes Commission Dr. Marc Gaden, Great Lakes Fishery Commission Mr. Steve Galarneau, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Dr. Chris Goddard, Great Lakes Fishery Commission Mr. Gary Gulezian, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - GLNPO Ms. Jennifer Heller, National Wildlife Federation Mr. Peter Johnson, Council of Great Lakes Governors Mr. Robert Krska, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Mr. Chad W. Lord, Healing our Waters Coalition Ms. Joy Mulinex, Great Lakes Task Force Mr. Dave Naftzger, Council of Great Lakes Governors Ms. Erin O’Brien, Wisconsin Wetlands Association Ms. Victoria Pebbles, Great Lakes Commission Col. Vincent Quarles, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - Chicago

• • • • • • • •

Ms. Karen Rodriguez, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - GLNPO LTC Daniel Snead, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers - Buffalo Ms. Melissa Soline, Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative Ms. Heather Stirratt, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Mr. Jan Surface, Natural Resources Conservation Service Mr. Gildo Tori, Ducks Unlimited, Inc. Mr. David Ullrich, Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative Mr. James E. Zorn, Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission

Finally, for brevity reasons, raw survey data has not been incorporated in this document. Copies of raw survey data used to develop conclusions in this document can be obtained via an email to Ms. Lisa Huntington at lhuntington@ectinc.com. Project Team: Mr. Henry Shah, FutureNet Group, Inc. Ms. Mariah Hope, FutureNet Group, Inc. Mr. Jeff Edstrom, Environmental Consulting & Technology, Inc. Mr. Roy Schrameck, Environmental Consulting & Technology, Inc. Ms. Lisa Huntington, Environmental Consulting & Technology, Inc. (Project Manager) Dr. Sanjiv Sinha, Environmental Consulting & Technology, Inc. (Project Director)

Great Lakes Habitat and Species Strategic Planning Project

TABLE OF CONTENTS
1.0 2.0 3.0 Executive Summary Project Introduction and Rationale Restoration of the Great Lakes Basin: Background 3.1 Great Lakes Regional Collaboration (GLRC) 3.2 Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) and its Action Plan 3.3 GLRI Action Plan Measures of Progress 3.4 Great Lakes Habitat Initiative (GLHI) and Habitat/Species Work Group Project Methodology 4.1 Data Collection 4.2 Data Analysis Understanding and Overcoming Barriers to Implementation 5.1 An Analysis of Non-federal/state Respondents: Their Organizations, Planning and Funding Needs 5.2 Recommendations to Overcome Obstacles to Restoration Implementation References 1 6 8 8 8 9 11 12 12 13 14 14 16 22

4.0

5.0

6.0

LIST OF TABLES 3.1. Measure of Progress for Habitat and Wildlife Protection Outlined in GLRI’s Action Plan (December 3, 2009) 10

LIST OF FIGURES A-1: A-2: A-3: A-4: A-5: A-6: A-7: A-8: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the physical location of a respondent’s organization Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization represents an AOC Number of non-federal/state responses (y-axis) indicating which AOC(s) the respondent represents Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating their organization type Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating a respondent’s role in their organization Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating a respondent’s years of experience in the Great Lakes basin Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not they have been directly involved in restoration activities Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the number of restoration A-1 A-2 A-2 A-3 A-3 A-4 A-4

A-9: A-10: A-11: A-12: A-13: A-14: A-15: A-16: A-17: A-18: A-19: A-20: A-21: A-22: A-23: A-24: A-25: A-26: A-27: A-28: A-29: A-30: A-31:

projects in which a respondent has been involved Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the number of staff in respondent’s organization Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating their organizational budget size Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether their organizations engage in significant volunteer effort A-7 Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization’s budget has decreased in the last twelve months Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the impact of reduced budget on their specific efforts Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether their organization has the capability to implement restoration projects Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not they were involved in the development of GLRC goals for habitat/species focus area Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating familiarity with GLRC’s habitat/species goals in each of the four focus areas Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether GLRC goals are important to their day-to-day planning/operations activities A-11 Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether their organization has difficulty identifying high priority areas for restoration Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization has identified specific projects Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the average budget of the identified restoration projects Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not the identified projects can be completed without additional funding Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not the projects identified by an organization are listed in the GLHI database Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not they are familiar with GLRI opportunities Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the current sources of project funding Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the agencies that have funded their organization in the past Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the capacity to which an organization meets the match requirements Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the types of match provided by their organization Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization partner with other organizations Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the types of partners with which their organization has worked Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the frequency of partnerships Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the ability to provide cash match for potential partnerships

A-5 A-6 A-6

A-8 A-8 A-9 A-10 A-10

A-11 A-12 A-13 A-13 A-14 A-14 A-15 A-15 A-16 A-17 A-17 A-18 A-18 A-19

Great Lakes Habitat and Species Strategic Planning Project

A-32: Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the ability to provide in-kind services for potential partnerships A-33: Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the ability to provide or coordinate volunteer activities for potential partnerships A-34: Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the ability to provide property for potential partnerships 20 A-35: Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the ability to obtain permits from partnerships A-36: Respondents’ ranking of “poor coordination and timing of multiple funding RFPs” as a barrier to project implementation A-37: Respondents’ ranking of “funding opportunities do not focus on holistic restoration strategies” as a barrier to project implementation A-38: Respondents’ ranking of “project identification” as an unmet need for project Implementation A-39: Respondents’ ranking of “project implementation funding” as an unmet need for project implementation A-40: Percent of respondents indicating which federal regulations have been applicable to restoration efforts A-41: Respondents’ ranking of “project length restrictions” as a barrier to project implementation A-42: Respondents’ ranking of “delayed payments from funding sources” as a barrier to project implementation A-43: Respondents’ ranking of “inability to obtain long term maintenance funding for projects” as a barrier to project implementation A-44: Respondents’ ranking of “more internal staff” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects A-45: Respondents’ ranking of “more technical expertise/training of internal staff” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects A-46: Respondents’ ranking of “planning/design assistance” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects A-47: Respondents’ ranking of “more or improved internal institutional support” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects A-48: Respondents’ ranking of “cannot meet matching requirements” as a barrier to project implementation A-49: Respondents’ ranking of “monetary match” as an unmet need for project implementation LIST OF APPENDICES Appendix A: Survey Analyses & Discussion

A-19 A-20

A-21 A-22 A-23 A-24 A-24 A-25 A-26 A-26 A-27 A-28 A-28 A-29 A-29 A-30 A-30

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1.0 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
This project was designed to solicit diverse information needed by the Habitat-Species Workgroup (HSWG) of the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration (GLRC) in furthering the implementation of habitat and species restoration and conservation projects throughout the Great Lakes basin. While the United States Army Corp of Engineers (USACE) directed this work, which was funded through the American Reinvestment & Recovery Act, this project was developed for and overseen by the HSWG. Specifically, this project’s goal was to identify ways to accelerate the protection and restoration of habitat in the basin. A key component of the project was to identify the many challenges and solutions to this acceleration. Toward that end, information was solicited through an on-line survey from a large group of stakeholders across the Great Lakes basin, including, but not limited to, federal and state agency resource managers at senior and mid-level positions, tribal resource managers, and leading non-governmental organizations in the fields of restoration and conservation. For the purposes of analysis presented in this report, survey respondents were considered within one of two groups: “federal/state respondents” that include any responder employed by a state or federal government and “non-federal/state respondents” that include those individuals working for local communities, non-profit agencies, tribal groups and any other non-federal or state governmental agency. Highlighted conclusions based on the responses from non-federal/state respondents, include: • Although most of the respondents did not participate in developing the GLRC goals and objectives nearly 90% of the non-federal/state respondents indicated that they use these goals in their day-to-day operations; A majority of their organizations are very well prepared to undertake restoration projects as they have substantial experience implementing projects in the Basin; Nearly 70% have identified a list of specific habitat/species restoration projects; Most are familiar with the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) funding opportunities, indicating that federal and state agencies have done an excellent job with marketing the various GLRI opportunities; Only a small fraction of the non-governmental organizations can secure required matching funds; and Nearly 90% of the non-governmental organizations seek partnerships which tend to be local or regional in nature.

• • •

• •

Summarizing the data gathered on barriers to implementing projects across the Great Lakes basin for all respondents, the most significant barriers to implementation are: • • • • • Project funding; Poor coordination and timing of multiple funding proposals; Funding opportunities not focusing on holistic restoration strategies; Inability to obtain long-term maintenance funding; Lack of internal staff or technical expertise;

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• •

Inability or difficulty in providing required matching funds; and Lack of planning and design assistance.

Furthermore, the perception of level of difficulty in many (but not all) of the above barriers, varies widely between Non-federal/state respondents and Federal/state respondents, and there is definitely a need to educate both sets of resource managers for more effective management. Overall, the survey results provided quantitative insight into what is occurring within the Great Lakes basin that is “right” and what could be improved relative to restoring the basin. Things being done “right” include, but are not limited to: • • • • The non-governmental organizations and governmental agencies are developing and sustaining workable partnerships among themselves; There is significant depth of knowledge and experience among the various organizations working on Great Lakes restoration; Federal and state agencies have done an excellent job articulating GLRI opportunities across the basin; While not all non-federal/state respondent’s organizations utilize the GLRC goals as a guidance for their day-to-day operations and many of the groups did not work on developing the GLRC goals, they are at least familiar with the GLRC; and Generally speaking, non-federal/state respondents and Federal/state respondents are on the same page on many barriers to implementation.

Recommended, strategic actions to overcome obstacles can be categorized under six themes: I. Emphasis on Restoration Goals and Regional Focus: 1. Initiate basin-wide GLRC goals related educational presentation for stakeholder education: It appears that most non-federal/state respondents were not involved in setting the GLRC goals and, that, although they supposedly use the goals in their day-today planning and operations, they tend to not know if the projects they have advocated actually meet those goals or not and do not know if the projects reflect the goals. The Project Team recommends hosting an hour-long session, that simply articulates the immediate-term and long-term goals of GLRC’s Action Plan, in all future GLRI related meetings in 2010-2011. In addition, all agencies involved in the process need to use their websites as well as GLRI website (and other venues) to broadcast GLRC goals and objectives succinctly and clearly. 2. Host a workshop that focuses solely on the projects that are construction ready for federal/state agency personnel: There is significant disconnect among federal/state respondents and non-federal/state respondents with regards to the basin’s readiness so far as projects in-the-pipeline. Future AOC and other workshops need to host sessions or workshops that bring non-federal/state personnel to the podium with Federal/state
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personnel in the audience, and address their prioritization process, project lists, etc. 3. Continue to emphasize high priority on meeting GLRC’s implementation goals: The survey suggests that future RFPs should give extra “points” for advancement of the GLRC Strategy goals. This appears to be occurring based on some recent RFPs, but that practice should continue, expand, and be consistent among RFPs. II. Priority Setting: 1. Develop a list of priority areas or watersheds for better focus: Obviously, there is a need for quantifiable success on a basin-scale to continue to justify federal funding to the region. Quantifiable success may be easier to achieve if a list of priority areas or watersheds is ascertained for GLRI funding and then targeted. There are significant planning efforts already in place that would assist with such an exercise. These include State Wildlife Action Plans, Delisting Targets and Restoration Blueprints for various Areas of Concern, All Bird Joint Venture Plan, etc. The Project Team believes that this would assist in bringing focus to the varying, different mandates that federal agencies tend to operate under. 2. Maintain a regional database of all projects: The availability of all restoration projects within a centralized setup for the entire basin facilitates planning and priority setting, enhances the basin’s ability so far as future requests to the federal government, and further emphasizes to the stakeholders that they are part of a single basin. Project Team recommends that all future funding requests under various GLRI related RFPs be assembled in a single database like the GLHI. III. Project Eligibility and Implementation: 1. Set-aside more GLRI funding towards land trusts: One barrier identified was that there are too many restrictions on the purchase of property as a grant fundable activity. As few federal programs allow land purchases, U.S. EPA may want to set aside larger proportions of funding allocations to federal agencies that already do this (e.g., National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Coastal Estuarine Land Conservation and Enhancement Program or U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service). It is better to fund agencies that already engage in these activities as opposed to creating new funding structures in agencies that have no such past experience. 2. Fund long-term maintenance of the projects: Lack of maintenance endangers the longterm viability of the investment made in restoration. Consideration should be given to allowing for long-term maintenance seed funding for the completed projects that can be used to leverage other maintenance match funding. New grant applications should include a provision for long-term maintenance funding as part of the initial project application. 3. Streamline wetland restoration permitting: Several respondents indicated that Section 404 permits to restore wetlands often leads to significant delays and increased project
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costs, and sometimes requires mitigation for wetland impacts even when wetlands are being restored through the project. Noting the sizeable goal of wetland restoration in GLRI’s Action Plan, it would be very useful to further streamline the permitting process by responsible agencies. IV. Improve Funding Disbursement and Requests for Proposals: 1. Utilize project-directed and/or geographically-directed RFPs: RFPs that are directed to specific projects would be a positive direction for the grant program. The current practice of broad-based RFPs that “cast a wide net” for projects may not be the best approach. Instead, another possibility that needs to be considered is to make the RFPs project directed. Having “priority watershed” areas for directed grant applications is a move in this direction. 2. Improve timing of an RFP release and resources needed to develop responses: There are several barriers related to timing and resources reflected in the survey responses by the non-federal/state respondents that could be addressed by allowing for a preview of the RFP prior to its formal release, and consider reimbursing for proposal development costs. 3. Minimize effort needed to develop submittals: Grant applications require significant effort to complete often with little guarantee of success. Consideration should be given to decreasing the proposal length requirements, standardized proposal formats among various agencies, and adopting a two-step process for proposal submittal. 4. Drive the desired type of partnerships among non-federal/state organizations: The fact that 90% of the non-federal/state respondents seek partnerships with other organizations that are typically local or regional in nature, is a unique aspect that needs to be further explored, and leveraged. V. Limitations of Local Match: 1. Continue to seek federal funding: The results of the survey reinforce the concept that the federal/state funding is extremely important if the habitat restoration goals are ever going to be met and the restoration projects actually implemented. 2. Consider other options to federal funding, such as private sector interest in Green Infrastructure investments: The Project Team believes that there is significant and emerging interest among the private sector in green infrastructure and renewable energy sectors, and the basin managers need to consider hosting workshops and conferences that highlight that nexus. 3. Further reduce or eliminate the use of local match as mandatory requirement for funding or as a criteria in the selection of proposals: Local match funding is difficult to achieve for nearly 75% of the basin’s non-federal/state respondents, and needs to either be eliminated altogether or reduced drastically.
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VI:

Skill-sets and Staffing: 1. Increase engineering expertise in federal and state organizations or find ways to facilitate interaction with engineering firms or NGOs with engineering expertise: The need for engineering support is critical to successful projects as they require an approvable, biddable plans and specs that are prepared by engineers. Noting so, the federal/state agencies need to find ways to facilitate interaction between non-federal/state organizations and consulting firms (or NGOs etc that have engineering expertise), or consider putting an emphasis on hiring engineers within their organizations. 2. Hire more staff when possible: The federal/state respondents indicate a dire need to hire more staff for program administration, and the Project Team believes this is a serious need that needs to be met via more hiring and perhaps innovative teaming agreements with partner agencies in the basin.

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2.0 PROJECT INTRODUCTION AND RATIONALE
There are many challenges to protecting and restoring habitat in the Great Lakes basin. Among them are the large number of agencies and stakeholder groups and the inherent differences among these entities with regard to philosophies, priorities, parochial interests, and local needs. Overcoming these challenges requires a multi-faceted approach based on: • • Understanding the demographics of the stakeholders across the basin including those that engage in the basin’s restoration, their capabilities, capacities, and past work; Formulating a core set of principles that guide the restoration process across the basin, and conveying it to the stakeholder organizations so everyone understands the needs and their organizational and project “place” within a regional fabric; Understanding what is needed to carry out implementation successfully, including past planning efforts and project funding and local match needs; Understanding various barriers to implementation including different objectives and procedures of various agencies, and developing a coordinating mechanism; and Designing a process for attaining multi-jurisdictional consensus on restoration priorities, their geographic distribution and implementation strategies to reach ecological goals.

• • •

This project focused on identifying solutions for some of the above challenges using an online survey. This project did not attempt to prioritize projects across the basin, nor did it seek to develop a set of core principles/goals to achieve restoration. The Project Team believes these principles/goals are already in place (see Section 3.3) although as discussed later, there needs to be continued stakeholder education to improve awareness of them. An additional focus of the project was to more broadly identify key challenges to restoring the Great Lakes basin. Consequently, the project sought information from a large group of stakeholders across the Great Lakes basin, including, but not limited to, federal and state agency resource managers at senior and mid-level positions, tribal resource managers, and leading nongovernmental organizations in the fields of restoration and conservation. Rather than conduct multiple meetings, it was determined that the desired information could be more efficiently obtained through the use of an on-line survey. Additionally, providing a forum for individual responses (with the option to remain anonymous) potentially allowed for a larger and more diverse response set. The project was carried out on behalf of the Habitat-Species Workgroup (HSWG). The HSWG was initially formed as the Steering Committee for the Great Lake Habitat Initiative (GLHI). The GLHI developed a set of tools to advance the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration’s (GLRC) Habitat-Species goals. These tools included: • • • A database of potential habitat restoration projects; An inventory of federal and non-federal funding programs; A lexicon of the project characterization criteria that could be used to objectively evaluate and compare project outputs, and;
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Narrative descriptions of the ways partner agencies and organizations planned to use these tools.

The goal of the current project was multifaceted. It was designed to solicit diverse information needed by the HSWG in furthering the implementation of habitat and species restoration and conservation projects throughout the Great Lakes basin. While the United States Army Corp of Engineers (USACE) directed this work, which was funded through the American Reinvestment & Recovery Act, this project was developed for and overseen by the HSWG. A secondary project goal was to assess the ways the GLHI project or any other funding databases could be of further assistance to the inter-agency effort to restore the basin. Although functioning as a snap shot in time unless it is periodically updated, the information assembled by the GLHI can be used as a starting point for planning and decision making for Great Lakes habitat restoration by agencies, organizations, and project proponents individually or collectively. The project scope was further designed to support the execution of the GLRC's HSWG work plan (http://www.glrc.us/documents/H-SWorkGroupCharterandWorkPlan01-09.pdf), while the strategic information developed by the project supports the integration of federal programs for habitat conservation and restoration in concert with the Administration's Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI). The strategic information provided through this effort may also be used by the HSWG to formulate recommendations to the GLRC on solutions to overcome the key obstacles. This information may also be useful to federal agencies as they work to integrate their funding programs for the GLRI.

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3.0 RESTORATION OF THE GREAT LAKES BASIN: BACKGROUND
3 .1 Great Lakes Regional Collaboration (GLRC)

The GLRC is a partnership of federal, state, city, and tribal governments developed in May 2004 under Executive Order (EO) 13340, which established a national priority for the protection and restoration of the Great Lakes. In 2003, at the request of a Great Lakes congressional delegation and as a first step in providing needed leadership and coordination, the Great Lakes governors identified nine priorities for Great Lakes restoration and protection. Since their release, these priorities have been adopted by the Great Lakes mayors, the Great Lakes Commission and other Great Lakes leaders. Eight of these priorities form the organizing principles for the GLRC Strategy. The ninth priority related to “water use and diversion” is being addressed through ongoing State-Provincial efforts to implement the “Great Lakes Compact” and its companion Agreement, and thus is not dealt with by the GLRC Strategy. The EO recognized the Great Lakes as a "national treasure" and created a federal Great Lakes Interagency Task Force (IATF) to improve federal coordination on the Great Lakes. The EO also directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator to convene a "regional collaboration of national significance for the Great Lakes.” This collaboration process was utilized to develop, by consensus, the national restoration and protection action plan for the Great Lakes. After extensive discussions, the Administration, Governors, Mayors, Tribal leaders and Members of Congress signed a Declaration and agreed to a Framework Document that signified the convening of the Collaboration in December 2004. The framework was developed to guide the collaboration process. After a year of work, the GLRC released its Strategy to Restore and Protect the Great Lakes on December 12, 2005. In March 2006, the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration issued the GLRC Implementation Framework describing the structure moving forward. The shared goal is to ensure the commitment to use the GLRC Strategy to guide future efforts to protect and restore the Great Lakes in an ongoing manner. 3 .2 Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) and its Action Plan

President Obama's 2010 Budget provided $475 million in EPA's budget for a new EPA-led, interagency Great Lakes restoration initiative, to target the most significant problems in the region. This initiative uses outcome-oriented performance goals and measures to target some of the most significant problems and track progress in addressing them. EPA and its Federal partners are supporting State, tribal, local, and non-governmental actions to protect, maintain, and restore the chemical, biological, and physical integrity of the Great Lakes. The Initiative builds upon five years of work of the IATF and stakeholders, guided by the GLRC Strategy. The IATF includes 16 cabinet and agency organizations, including: EPA, U.S. Department of State, U.S. Department of Interior, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Commerce, Housing and Urban Development, U.S. Department of Transportation, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, United States Army, White House’s Center for Environmental Quality, and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
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To jump-start the Initiative, the IATF developed a Plan for the proposed $475 million budget, including over $250 million in grants and project agreements. These grants and agreements were designed to make progress towards the long term goals: safely eating the fish and swimming at the basin’s beaches, assuring safe drinking water, and providing a healthy ecosystem for fish and wildlife. In the summer of 2009, agencies initiated processes to issue Requests for Proposals for competitive grants advancing the Initiative. In July and August of 2009, EPA’s Great Lakes National Program Office (GLNPO) held a series of public meetings with agencies and stakeholders in the Great Lakes states to get public feedback on the highest priority issues in each focus area, both basin-wide and locally, and to get suggestions to maximize results under the Initiative. The approved Great Lakes Restoration Action Plan (Action Plan) sought to incorporate those basin-wide and local priorities into a five year time frame for action through FY 2014. Federal agencies have begun implementing the FY 2010 plan. Under the Action Plan, five principal focus areas have been identified encompassing some of the most significant environmental problems in the Great Lakes (other than water infrastructure) for which urgent action is required. These include: • • • • • Toxic Substances and Areas of Concern; Invasive Species; Near-shore Health and Nonpoint Source Pollution; Habitat and Wildlife Protection and Restoration; and Accountability, Education, Monitoring, Evaluation, Communication and Partnerships.

Within the five focus areas, the Action Plan addresses priority projects. The IATF intends to target efforts and funds to priority projects that maximize results. Targeted, cooperative efforts are necessary to ensure meaningful progress on many of the complex and costly issues that have plagued the Great Lakes for decades. Some issues exist basin-wide (e.g., invasive species, nonpoint source pollution,) and require broad, expansive action, while others are more localized (e.g., Areas of Concern, habitat restoration) and will have site-specific remedies. Additional details of the federal funding disbursement to the basin can be found at http://greatlakesrestoration.us/action/wpcontent/uploads/InteragencyFundingGuide125510.pdf, that outlines available information about funding, match requirements, how and when to apply, and sources for additional information. This guide identifies Initiative assistance opportunities from ten federal organizations; however, it does not include funding which would be directed to specific existing grantees. This guide is to be continuously updated and/or clarified when additional information or funding opportunities are identified. 3 .3 GLRI Action Plan Measures of Progress

The GLRI is intended to significantly accelerate pollution prevention and reduction in the Great Lakes ecosystem. The measures by which progress is to be evaluated in these focus areas, as
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required under the White House Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) guidelines, are outlined below: Table 3.1 Measure of Progress for Habitat & Wildlife Protection Outlined in GLRI’s Action Plan (December 3, 2009) Measure
1. Miles of rivers reopened for fish passage. 2. Number of fish passage barriers removed or bypassed. 3. % of federally listed threatened or endangered species stabilized or improved

Baseline/ Universe
Baseline: 0 Universe: 20,000 miles Baseline: 0 Universe: 5,000 barriers **Baseline (2009): 79% 22/28*** species Universe: 28 listed species

2010 target
1,000 miles

2011 target
2,000 miles

2012 target
3,000 miles

2013 target
4,000 miles

2014 target
5,000 miles

100 barriers

200 barriers

300 barriers

400 barriers

500 barriers

79% 22/28 listed species

78% 21/27 listed species19

tbd

tbd

80% 20/25 listed species20

4. % of **Baseline populations of (2009): 27% 33% 39% 45% 51% 57% native aquatic non39/147**** 57/147 66/147 93/147 84/147 48/147 threatened and populations endangered species populations populations populations populations populations Universe: 147 self-sustaining in populations the wild. 5. Number of acres of wetlands Baseline: 0 and wetland10,000 15,000 20,000 25,000 5,000 acres Universe: associated uplands acres acres acres acres 550,000 acres protected, restored and enhanced. 6. Number of acres of coastal, Baseline: 0 15,000 30,000 50,000 75,000 100,000 upland and island Universe: acres acres acres acres acres habitats protected, 1,000,000 acres restored and enhanced. 7. % of U.S. Baseline: 0 coastal Great 20% 40% 60% 80% 100% Universe: Lakes wetlands 100% assessed. 8. Number of habitat-related Baseline: 4 9 BUIs 14 BUIs 20 BUIs 28 BUIs 34 BUIs BUIs removed Universe: 75 or removed removed removed removed removed from 27 U.S. so impaired AOCs so impaired. * Out year target for these measures are cumulative. The Universe represents all that is likely possible to protect, restore, enhance; baseline represents the number of acres etc. that are already protected, restored, enhanced. All measures of progress included here are interim figures until final baselines are established. ** Baseline and target performance information represents regional species and population data from the greater

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Midwest geographic area, including the Upper Mississippi River. *** Numerator: # of species listed under the Endangered Species Act that are stabilized or improving. Denominator: # of species (U.S. listings only). **** Numerator: # of populations of native aquatic non-T&E and non-candidate species that are self sustaining in the wild. Denominator: total # of aquatic non-T&E and non-candidate populations.

3 .4

Great Lakes Habitat Initiative (GLHI) and Habitat/Species Work Group

In March 2006, the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works (ASACW) selected the GLHI as the largest of six projects across the United States to analyze complex water resources issues within large, multijurisdictional watersheds. The initial GLHI proposal was coordinated with federal, state, and local agencies and nonprofit organizations, and letters of support for the project were provided by the Great Lakes Fishery Commission, Great Lakes Commission, Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Cities Initiative, The Nature Conservancy, Ducks Unlimited, and the cochairs of the Habitat/Species Team of the GLRC. The GLHI was a two-year project designed to develop an implementation plan to protect and restore wetlands and aquatic habitat. This builds upon the recommendations of the December 2005 Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Strategy to Restore and Protect the Great Lakes (GLRC Strategy). The GLHI sought to help bridge the gap between the regional needs identified in the GLRC Strategy and the programs that provide funding for “on-the-ground” actions.

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4.0 PROJECT METHODOLOGY
4 .1 Data Collection

A key component of the project was soliciting information from a large group of parties across the Great Lakes basin, including, but not limited to, federal resource managers; state agency resource managers at senior and mid-level positions; tribal resource managers and leading nongovernmental organizations in the fields of restoration and conservation. Rather than conduct multiple meetings, it was determined that the desired information could be more efficiently obtained through the use of an on-line survey. Additionally, providing a forum for individual responses (with the option to remain anonymous) allowed for a larger and more diverse response set. The survey was comprised of 56 mostly multiple-choice and yes/no questions, within the following categories: • Respondent Demographic Information: The questions in this section sought to better characterize the individual respondent based on a number of factors including years of experience working in the basin, professional background, current job function, etc. Overview of the Respondent’s Organization: The information collected from respondents in this section allowed for data to be broken down and analyzed for various groups, including states, organization type and size, regions they represented, etc. Familiarity with GLRC Goals and Strategy: This section was intended to gauge the respondent’s familiarity with the GLRC Strategy and identify if the published goals had been incorporated into the organization’s operation. Planning for Restoration Projects: One of the more critical sections of the survey, questions in this section were designed to understand the current activities and needs of the organizations with respect to planning and implementing restoration within the basin. Past Funding of Projects: This section included questions intended to better understand what funding mechanisms were being utilized to fund projects and what problems, if any were encountered. Barriers to Project Implementation: Also critical to the project, this section sought to better understand the needs (type and quantity) of organizations with respect to implementation of restoration projects in the basin. Comments/Suggestions: This section allowed respondents to provide additional comments and suggestions. Additionally, if the respondent desired, they could provide contact information to allow for follow up questions by the Project Team. Otherwise, the survey remained anonymous.

Invitations to participate in the survey were sent to a total of 685 people across the basin. The distribution list included individuals from a diverse array of organization of varying sizes, types and locations. A number of resources were used to develop the list. In 2009, led by the U.S. EPA’s GLNPO leadership, the Great Lakes Commission hosted a series of meetings to discuss the Great Lakes Restoration Strategy. Invitees and attendees of these meetings were included in
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the initial list. The project team augmented the list by including one representative from each Area of Concern (as identified on the USEPA’s Great Lakes National Program Office website) and representatives from Native American Tribes within the basin. Private-sector consultants were eliminated from the list. The website, Constant Comment, was used to host the online survey. A web-link to access the survey was included in an email which provided a brief project background and explained the primary goals of the survey in addition to expressing the importance of participation. Potential respondents were allowed one month to access and complete the survey. Follow-up, reminder emails were sent approximately two weeks after the initial invitation. Survey responses were tracked on a daily basis to identify any potential problems with responses. A cookie was used to identify IP addresses to ensure that each respondent completed the survey only once. 4 .2 Data Analysis

As described in section 4.1, on January 22, 2010, a total of 685 potential survey participants were contacted by emails from the Project Team that included an invite and a web link to the Online Survey. The Survey was kept “live” until February 19, 2010. During that period, one personal reminder was sent to each of the survey recipients. At the end of the period, a total of 158 responses were received which was nearly 23% percent of the invited participants. Out of these 158 respondents, 67 respondents worked for state government and 15 worked for the federal government. These respondents are grouped together and referred to as “Federal/state Respondents”. The remaining 76 respondents are called “Non-federal/state Respondents” for the remainder of this document. As one goal of this project was to glean information that may enhance the effectiveness of restoration within the basin from a local organization perspective, a summary of data responses obtained from non-federal/state respondents that neither worked for a state government nor the federal government is presented in Appendix A. In addition, responses from federal/state respondents and non-federal/state respondents are contrasted against each other and also presented in Appendix A. Lastly, we highly recommend the reader to review that Appendix A carefully before proceeding further in this report.

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5.0 UNDERSTANDING AND OVERCOMING BARRIERS TO IMPLEMENTATION
5 .1 An Analysis of Non-federal/state Respondents:, Their Organizations, Planning and Funding Needs, and Understanding Barriers to Implementation

Based upon the responses from non-federal/state respondents (which, as pointed out in Section 4.3, did not include state or federal regulatory agency respondents) presented in Appendix A, a summary of conclusions is presented below: Demographics of the non-federal/state respondents: • • • All states were well represented in the survey; All U.S. and binational AOCs were represented in the survey; Nearly 60% of the non-federal/state respondents represented one or more AOC, indicating the planning process currently in place within the AOCs seems to be working well; Non-federal/state respondents came from all types of organizations; and Non-federal/state respondents held policy, management, or communication roles, and relatively few responses from engineers were recorded indicating, perhaps, an underrepresented expertise in restoration planning and implementation.

• •

Understanding Great Lakes basin organizations engaged in various aspects of restoration: • Nearly half of Great Lakes basin non-federal/state respondents work for organizations that have less than ten full time employees and less than half-a-million dollars annual operating budget; and Nearly 60% of non-federal/state respondents’ organizations have been adversely impacted by the economic downturn of 2008-2009, their budget impact has been across the board on most functional levels, but a majority indicated their organizations are capable of implementing restoration projects.

Familiarity with GLRC goals and objectives: • Although most of the non-federal/state respondents did not participate in developing the GLRC goals and objectives nearly 90% indicated that they use these goals in their day-to-day operations.

Planning for restoration projects: • A majority of the non-federal/state respondents are very well prepared to undertake restoration projects as they have substantial experience implementing restoration projects within the Basin; Nearly 70% of non-federal/state respondents’ organizations have a list of specific habitat/species restoration projects;
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• • • •

A majority of projects currently being planned have a funding need of less than $500K each; There is definitely a need for federal and/or other funding to complete these projects; Only a very small fraction of these projects are listed in the GLHI database; and Federal and state agencies have done an excellent job with marketing various GLRI funding opportunities.

Implications of local match: • Only a small fraction of the non-federal/state respondents can secure 25% local match for a project and a match’s existence or its use as a possible “priority” designator for an RFP is not as relevant as one would think; In-kind services, partnering, and volunteer services are the three most common types of local matches used and available to non-federal/state respondents; There is a need for basin-wide education on the use of real estate as a form of local match.

• •

Partnerships • • Nearly 90% of non-federal/state respondents seek partnerships which tend to be local or regional in nature; and Top three key attractors in these partnerships are the following; o Availability of in-kind match; o Ability to provide in-kind services; and o Volunteer coordination.

Barriers to Implementation: Contrasting Non-federal/state respondents and Federal/state Respondents • Although there is a disconnect between Great Lakes basin non-federal/state respondents and federal/state respondents on many topics, for most categories, it can be characterized as a of degree of awareness or different priorities rather than opposite viewpoints; Based on responses rated 4 or 5 (5 = significant barrier), non-federal/state respondents consider the following as more of a barrier than federal/state respondents: o Funding opportunities do not focus on holistic restoration strategies o Project length restrictions and delayed payments from funding sources o Can not meet matching requirements Based on responses rated 4 or 5 (5 = significant barrier), on the other hand, federal/state personnel consider the following as more of a barrier than the non-federal/state respondents: o The need for project identification o Inability to obtain long-term maintenance funding o The need for more internal staff/training o The need for more or improved internal communication support
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Lastly, both sets of respondents believe all of the following are barriers to implementation: o Poor coordination and timing of the proposal o The need for project funding o The need for planning and design assistance o The need for monetary match Recommendations to Overcoming Obstacles to Implementation Across the Basin

5 .2

The survey results provide insight into what is occurring within the Great Lakes basin that is “right” and what could be improved relative to restoring the basin. Things being done “right” include, but are not limited to: • • • • The non-federal/state respondents and federal/state respondents are developing and sustaining workable partnerships among themselves; The various organizations within the basin are finding ways to leverage their strengths to perform restoration activities; There is significant depth of knowledge and experience among the various organizations working on Great Lakes restoration; There have been many successes historically within the basin which contributes to the ability of the organizations to continue to plan implementation activities based on completed planning and local knowledge; Federal and state agencies have done an excellent job articulating GLRI funding opportunities across the basin; While not all non-federal/state respondent organizations utilize the GLRC goals as a guidance for their day-to-day operations and many of the groups did not work on developing the GLRC goals, they are at least familiar with the GLRC; and Generally speaking, non-federal/state respondents and federal/state respondents are on the same page on many barriers to implementation.

• •

Suggested actions indicated by the survey responses include: I. Continued Emphasis on Restoration Goals and Region Focus: 1. Initiate basin-wide GLRC goals related educational talks for stakeholder education: It appears that most non-federal/state respondents were not involved in setting the GLRC goals and, that, although they supposedly use the goals in their day-to-day planning and operations, they tend to not know if the projects they have advocated actually meet those goals or not and do not know if the projects reflect the goals. It is also clear that the federal and state agencies have done an excellent job in marketing the GLRI opportunities. The Project Team recommends hosting an hour-long session, that simply articulates the immediate-term and long-term goals of GLRC’s Action Plan, in all future GLRI related meetings in 2010-2011. The Project Team also believes this may help the non-federal/state respondents and federal/state agencies to come closer in their disconnect regarding whether or not the GLRI RFPs have a holistic focus.
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In addition, all agencies involved in the process need to use their websites as well as GLRI website (and other venues) to broadcast GLRC goals and objectives, succinctly and clearly. 2. Host a workshop that focuses solely on the projects that are construction ready for federal/state agency personnel: There is significant disconnect among federal/state personnel and non-federal/state respondents with regards to the basin’s readiness so far as projects in-the-pipeline. Future AOC and other workshops need to host sessions or workshops that bring non-federal/state to the podium with federal/state personnel in the audience, and address their prioritization process, project lists, etc. 3. Continue to emphasize high priority on meeting GLRC goals: The survey suggests that future RFPs should give extra “points” for advancement of the GLRC Strategy goals. This appears to be occurring based on some recent RFPs, but that practice should continue, expand, and be consistent among RFPs. II. Priority Setting: 1. Develop a list of priority areas or watersheds for better focus: Obviously, there is a need for quantifiable success on a basin-scale to continue to justify federal funding to the region. Quantifiable success may be easier to achieve if a list of priority areas or watersheds is ascertained for GLRI funding and then targeted. There are significant planning efforts already in place that would assist with such an exercise. These include State Wildlife Action Plans, Delisting Targets and Restoration Blueprints for various Areas of Concern, All Bird Joint Venture Plan, etc. The Project Team believes that this would assist in bringing focus to the varying, different mandates that federal agencies tend to operate under. Development of such a list would accomplish the following, as a minimum: • • • • • Facilitate more directed RFPs; Make review by agency decision makers less onerous; Allow for more meaningful and directed responses from potential grantees to RFPs; Provide a directed implementation program that would more quickly accomplish the restoration goals; and Generate a sense of “community” among the diverse organizations moving toward the common goal of restoration within the Great Lakes basin.

2. Maintain a Regional Database of All Projects: The availability of all restoration projects within a centralized setup for the entire basin has many positive aspects to it. It facilitates planning and priority setting, enhances the basin’s ability so far as future requests to the federal government, and further emphasizes to the non-federal/state respondents that they are part of a single basin. Project Team recommends that all future funding requests under various GLRI related RFPs be assembled in a single database like the GLHI.
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III.

Changes to Project Eligibility and Implementation: 1. Set-aside more GLRI funding towards land trusts: One barrier identified was that there are too many restrictions on the purchase of property as a grant fundable activity. As few federal programs allow land purchases, U.S. EPA may want to set aside larger proportions of funding allocations to federal agencies that already do this (e.g., National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Coastal Estuarine Land Conservation and Enhancement Program or U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service). It is better to fund agencies that already engage in these activities as opposed to creating new structures in agencies that have no such past experience. 2. Fund long-term maintenance of the projects: Lack of maintenance endangers the longterm viability of the investment made in restoration. Consideration should be given to allowing for long-term maintenance seed funding for the completed projects that can be used to leverage other maintenance match funding. New grant applications should include a provision for long-term maintenance funding as part of the initial project application. 3. Streamline wetland restoration permitting: Several respondents indicated that Section 404 permits to restore wetlands often leads to significant delays and increased project costs, and sometimes requires mitigation for wetland impacts even when wetlands are being restored through the project. Noting the sizeable goal of wetland restoration in GLRI’s Action Plan, it would be very useful to further streamline the permitting process by responsible agencies.

IV.

Improve Funding Disbursement and Requests for Proposals: 1. Utilize project directed and/or geographically directed RFPs: RFPs that are directed to specific projects would be a positive direction for the grant program. The current practice of broad-based RFPs that “cast a wide net” for projects may not be the best approach. Instead, another possibility that needs to be considered is to make the RFPs project directed. Having “priority watershed” areas for directed grant applications is a move in this direction. While there was a previous attempt(s) at developing a common list of projects/priorities among federal/state agencies and non-federal/state respondents that failed, it is imperative to continued successful project implementation within the Great Lakes basin that the groups meet in a facilitated workshop environment and develop a common list that can be used for targeted RFPs that would be beneficial to both the grantee and the grantor organizations. 2. Improve timing of an RFP release and resources needed to develop responses: There are several barriers related to timing and resources reflected in the survey responses by the non-federal/state respondents that could be addressed by the following: • Allow for a preview of the RFP prior to its formal release: Insufficient time to complete an application was identified as a barrier; however, it is often the case that
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organizations wait until closer to the deadline to begin developing proposals. It may be helpful to promote the RFPs earlier in advance of their release in order to allow more lead time for organizations to develop restoration concepts and proposals prior to the formal release of the RFP. Consider reimbursing for proposal development costs: The issue of inadequate funding for proposal development is one that has been recognized for a long time. The issue could be addressed by allowing the cost of all or a portion of the grant application development to become fundable under the grant if a grant is awarded, similar to recent changes in the revolving fund loan regulations in Michigan.

3. Minimize effort needed to develop submittals: Grant applications require significant effort to complete often with little guarantee of success. Consideration should be given to: • Developing RFPs targeted to specific geographical locations and/or projects: As described previously, and specially noting the White House Office of Management and Budget’s focus on quantifiable progress to restoration, it may make sense to target geographical areas and/or specific projects from a common priority list that have a much better chance at meeting those goals. This way, stakeholders located in other regions of the basin or associated with other projects lower on the common priority list do not spend their time until their area/project comes to the top of the list. Decreasing the proposal length requirements: Making grant applications shorter and less complicated while still requiring an adequate explanation of the project would reduce resources needed to complete the applications and reduce the review time required by “decision makers”. Adopting a two-step process: Require pre-submittal of a Notice of Intent or a shorter pre-proposal prior to a request for a full grant application would allow potential applicants to better utilize resources in developing full applications as it will result in less initial local expense prior to the first application screening. Further, it would allow reviewers to more efficiently use proposal review time so that there is greater focus on fewer full proposals.

4. Eliminate Project Length Requirements if possible: Noting project length restriction is a key barrier, when possible, future GLRI RFPs need to consider project length recommended by the grantee rather than being dictated by the RFP, agency guidance, or grant regulations. If the regulations can not be changed and the RFP has to include a timeframe for implementation then an option should be available to the grantee, reinforced by a modification to the grant regulations/guidance, to include a justified implementation timeframe within the grant application. 5. Drive the desired type of partnerships among stakeholder organizations: Survey responses indicated that nearly 90% of the non-federal/state respondents seek partnerships with other organizations that are typically local or regional in nature. The Project Team believes this is a unique aspect that needs to be further explored, and
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perhaps leveraged to promote regional scale thinking in local projects across the basin via inducements through additional points in proposal review process. V. Limitations of Local Match: 1. Continue to seek federal funding: The results of the survey reinforce the concept that the federal/state funding is extremely important if the habitat restoration goals are ever going to be met and the restoration projects actually implemented. 2. Consider other options to federal funding, such as private sector interest in Green Infrastructure investments: The Project Team believes that there is significant and emerging interest among the private sector in green infrastructure and renewable energy sectors. The Team also believes that there is a complete lack of emphasis on trying to align the interests of these private sector players to those of the basin’s. A good way to start this process would be to consider hosting workshops and conferences that highlight that nexus. 3. Further reduce or eliminate the use of local match as mandatory or a criterion in the selection of proposals: Local match funding is viewed as a barrier by a large number of organizations as it can be difficult to achieve for nearly 75% of the basin’s nonfederal/state respondents. Cash match is little used, and in-kind services more often utilized. Local match is often viewed as critical to achieving buy-in by local organizations that can make sustaining restorations more likely. However, many projects have not been implemented due to lack of ability to raise local match even where there has been a high level of philosophical “buy in”. There are two options to making nonfederal match easier to achieve: reduce or eliminate match requirements or increase the value of in-kind services. Reducing the requirement to between 10% and 25% (the levels where a large number of organizations indicated were less difficult to achieve) or eliminating the match would allow these organizations to focus on the business of restoration without the accounting difficulties historically associated with in-kind match. VI: Skill-sets and Staffing: 1. Increase engineering expertise in federal and state organizations or find ways to facilitate interaction with engineering firms or NGOs with that expertise: Prior to addressing this topic, Project Team would like to indicate that almost all consultants engaged in developing this report are professional engineers. The survey responses seem to indicate that there are some engineers in managerial or policy roles within the responding organizations. However, these organizations also indicate that additional engineering support is a significant need, and that most of their engineers are in managerial/administrative roles. The need for engineering support is critical to successful projects as they require an approvable, biddable plans and specs that are prepared by engineers. Noting so, the federal/state agencies need to find ways to facilitate interaction between non-federal/state organizations and consulting firms (or
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NGOs with that expertise), or consider putting an emphasis on hiring engineers to their organizations. 2. Hire more federal/state staff when possible: It is significant that the state/federal response indicates that they need more internal staff and that this has become a barrier to success. This may be due to budgetary issues over the last several years that have reduced staff in key areas. Given the large amount of funding that is available for Great Lakes restoration, it is likely that there is insufficient staff to coordinate efforts funded through the GLRI as well as develop state responses to the federal RFPs. Coupling this response with the indicated lack of staff to pursue grant opportunities suggests that the federal/state community needs to take advantage of the restoration opportunities and modify the guidance/regulations where the opportunity does not currently exist. This includes engaging external experts for short periods, or hire more federal/state staff when funding allows it.

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6.0 REFERENCES
Great Lakes Interagency Task Force. Report to the President on the Implementation of the Great Lakes Executive Order. October 28, 2005. http://www.epa.gov/greatlakes/iatf/rttp_implementation.pdf. Great Lakes Interagency Task Force. Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Proposed 2010 Funding Plan. May 5, 2009. http://www.epa.gov/greatlakes/glri/GLRIProposed2010FundingPlan050509.pdf Great Lakes Regional Collaboration of National Significance. Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Strategy to Restore and Protect the Great Lakes. December 2005. http://www.glrc.us/strategy.html. Great Lakes Regional Collaboration. Framework for the Great Lakes Regional Collaboration. http://www.glrc.us/documents/Framework12032004.pdf Great Lakes Regional Collaboration. GLRC Habitat/Species Work Group Charter and Work Plan. January 9, 2009. http://www.glrc.us/documents/H-SWorkGroupCharterandWorkPlan01-09.pdf Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Resolution. http://www.glrc.us/documents/Resolution.pdf U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Great Lakes Habitat Initiative Final Report and Implementation Plan. August 2008. http://www.usace.army.mil/CECW/PlanningCOP/Documents/news/wshed/great_lakes.p df

Great Lakes Habitat and Species Strategic Planning Project

APPENDIX A: SURVEY ANALYSES & DISCUSSION

A -1

A .1

Respondent Demographic Information

These questions were asked to better characterize the individual respondents based on a number of factors such as employer, past work related to restoration, years of experience, technical background, etc. In addition, in order to ensure that responses were not entered as the result of forwarding the link by way of such mechanisms as listservs, a key question was added at the beginning of the survey that inquired from who the respondent received the survey. A summary of the data is presented below. The 76 non-federal/state respondents represented every state within the Great Lakes basin with the largest number of responses from Wisconsin and the smallest number from the state of Illinois.

IN 8%

IL 6%
WI 22%

NY 11% MI 15%

MN 11% OH 15%

PA 12%

Figure A-1: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the physical location of a respondent’s organization Nearly sixty percent of non-federal/state respondents represented an Area of Concern (AOC). This may indicate that the stakeholders within various AOCs are far better organized and proactively engaged in their respective regions than stakeholders in non-AOC watersheds. If this is correct, there may be a need to cross-pollinate many of the AOC related activities to watersheds that are not part of or near AOCs.

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No Response 11%

No 31%

Yes 58%

Figure A-2: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization represents an AOC Equally interestingly, the non-federal/state respondents were spread out in ALL U.S. and binational AOCs. The largest numbers of the respondents came from Presque Isle Bay, Green Bay and Fox River, Milwaukee River, and St. Louis River AOCs. Only two responses each were recorded from Waukegan Harbor, Deer Lake, Manistique River, Sheboygan River, and Torch Lake AOCs.

Figure A-3: Number of non-federal/state responses (y-axis) indicating which AOC(s) the respondent represents Non-federal/state respondents represented a wide range of types of organizations. Local municipalities or nonprofits made up 51% of those taking the survey. In addition, there were a
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significant number of representatives from tribes, regional nonprofits and universities. Regional planning commissions were somewhat underrepresented, with responders from these organizations representing only 2% of the total.
Other 6% Regional Planning 2%

State-wide Nonprofit 7% Univ 9%

Local Govt 28%

Tribal 13%

R egional N onprofit 23% Local Nonprofit 13%

Figure A-4: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating their organization type Most taking the survey were in science or policy/management roles within their organizations. Responses from relatively few engineers and communications staff were recorded.
Education 7% E ngineer 1%

Comm 11%

Policy/Mgm t 33%

Other 17%

S cientist 31%

Figure A-5: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating a respondent’s role in their organization

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There was a good distribution of Great Lakes experience in the pool of respondents with a majority indicating over a decade of experience. This indicates that a majority of the nonfederal/state respondents are well versed in their subject areas, and likely have a good understanding of local restoration needs.

> 20 Y r 26%

< 5 Yr 21%

6-10 Yr 22% 11-20 Y r 31%

Figure A-6: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating a respondent’s years of experience in the Great Lakes basin Not surprisingly, over three-quarters of non-federal/state respondents indicated that they had prior experience with restoration activities.

No 22%

Yes 78%

Figure A-7: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not they have been directly involved in restoration activities
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In fact, nearly half of the respondents have worked on six or more restoration projects.

More than 20 20%

11 to 20 5% 5 or less 54%

6 to 10 21%

Figure A-8: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the number of restoration projects in which a respondent has been involved Summarizing the survey data on the demographics of the non-federal/state respondents, the following conclusions can be made: • • • All states were represented well in the survey; All AOCs were represented in the survey; Nearly 60% of the non-federal/state respondents represented one AOC or more indicating the planning process currently in place within the AOCs seems to be working well; Non-federal/state respondents came from all types of organizations; Non-federal/state respondents held policy, management, or communication roles, and relatively few responses from engineers were recorded indicating, perhaps, an underrepresented expertise in restoration planning and implementation; and A majority of the non-federal/state respondents are very well prepared to undertake restoration projects as they have done many of these in the past. Overview of Great Lakes Basin Organizations

• •

• A .2

The next category of survey questions focused upon identifying the types of organizations the respondents were representing. There was a key reason to include these questions in the survey, which was to allow the data to be broken down and analyzed for various groups, including states, organization type/size, etc. In addition, these questions focused upon the capacities and capabilities of Great Lakes basin organizations.

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A majority of non-federal/state respondents indicated that they worked for organizations that employed less than ten full time employees. If this sample of respondents represents the basin at-large, the Project Team believes it indicates that a majority of Great Lakes basin organizations are “grass-roots” organizations. Further evidence of this follows.
Over 500 5%

101 to 500 18%

26 to 100 10%

1 to 10 53%

11 to 25 14%

Figure A-9: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the number of staff in respondent’s organization Consistent with the previous figure, just over half of the non-federal/state respondents represented organizations that had an annual budget of less than half a million dollars a year, and interestingly, the Great Lakes basin is served by a wide-variety of organizations that are interested in its welfare.

< $50K 13% $50K -$100K 8%

> $500K 54%

$100K -250K 14%

$250K-500K 11%

Figure A-10: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating their organization’s annual budget size

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Consistent with having small budgets and few staff members, almost half of the organizations use significant volunteer support. The Project Team believes that this data has two implications: a) in federal funding RFPs, a continued emphasis on volunteer as a match is a key enabler; and b) the Great Lakes non-federal/state respondents are engaged in a truly grass-roots effort if they are able to engage significant volunteer effort.

No 54%

Yes 46%

Figure A-11: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether their organizations engage in significant volunteer effort To better assess an organization’s recent emphasis on restoration efforts, the next survey question targeted whether or not the recession has had any impact on these organization. It was found that close to 60% of organizations have seen decreased budgets over the last year.

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No 41% Yes 59%

Figure A-12: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization’s budget has decreased in the last twelve months In more than 60 out of 76 non-federal/state responses, reduced organizational budget has affected that organization’s planning, engineering, construction, and management aspects of restoration. More respondents indicated planning and management as being more affected than engineering and construction.
20% 18%
Percent of Respondents

16% 14% 12% 10% 8% 6% 4% 2% 0%
Management No impact Planning Construction Engineering Other

Category

Figure A-13: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the impact of reduced budget on their specific efforts Despite the economic conditions and reduced organizational budgets, 84% of the respondents indicated that their organization has the capability to implement restoration projects.
Great Lakes Habitat and Species Strategic Planning Project

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No 16%

Y es 84%

Figure A-14: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether their organization has the capability to implement restoration projects Summarizing the survey data on the Great Lakes basin organizations, the following two conclusions can be made: • Nearly half of Great Lakes basin non-federal/state respondents work for organizations that have less than ten full time employees and less than half-a-million dollars annual operating budget; and Nearly 60% have been adversely impacted by the economic downturn of 2008-2009, their budget impact has been across the board on most functional levels, but a majority indicated they are capable of implementing restoration projects. Familiarity with Great Lakes Regional Collaboration Goals and Strategy

A .3

The next set of questions targeted a respondent’s familiarity with GLRC’s goals and strategy. Questions were asked to assess the level of familiarity of a respondent with the GLRC goal setting process, the importance of these goals to their organization’s business operations, the level of specificity of their project choices, etc. Note that consistent with the rest of the survey, these questions are specific to the habitat/species focus area of the GLRC process. Only 28% of non-federal/state respondents participated in the GLRC goal setting process. A key item to keep in mind that GLRC goal setting process had seven different tracks, and some of these non-federal/state respondents may simply have participated in other tracks.

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Yes 28%

No 72%

Figure A-15: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not they were involved in the development of GLRC goals for habitat/species focus area Interesting, nearly 60% of the non-federal/state respondents indicated that they now have the familiarity with GLRC’s habitat/species goals for each of its four habitat types.

No 39%

Yes 61%

Figure A-16: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating familiarity with GLRC’s habitat/species goals in each of the four habitat types Not surprisingly, almost 90% of non-federal/state respondents stated that the GLRC goals were somewhat important or very important to their day-to-day operations. This seems to indicate
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that the group responding is invested in restoration activities that are consistent with the goals of governing and advising agencies.
Not important 10% Very important 22%

Somewhat important 68%

Figure A-17: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether GLRC goals are important to their day-to-day planning/operations activities A vast majority (81%) of non-federal/state respondents indicated that they have no difficulties identifying high priority areas for restoration. This suggests that that these organizations have a good understanding of their local area, and much of the federal planning activities (especially in AOCs, noting much of the respondents represent them) have added value.

Yes 19%

No 81%

Figure A-18: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether their organization has difficulty identifying high priority areas for restoration
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Finally, a slightly lower percentage has already identified specific habitat/species restoration projects.

No 30%

Yes 70%

Figure A-19: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization has identified specific projects Summarizing the survey data on the level of familiarity with GLRC goals, the following conclusions can be made: • Although a majority of the non-federal/state respondents were not engaged with the development of GLRC goals for habitat/species track, they now have the familiarity with its four focus areas; Nearly 90% of the non-federal/state respondents indicated that they use these goals in their day-to-day operations; and Nearly 70% already have a list of specific habitat/species restoration projects. Planning for Restoration Projects

• • A .4

The next set of survey questions consisted of a series of queries designed to develop an understanding of current activities and needs of an organization with respect to the planning and implementation of projects across the basin. These questions looked to assess where the projects are located, the average budget of these projects, whether or not the projects could be completed without additional funding, familiarity with GLRI opportunities, their organizations past funding history, etc. On being asked how many projects the non-federal/state respondents identified within each of the four habitat categories of the GLRC Strategy, it was found that a majority of respondents had identified less than five projects. It was also found that open/nearshore waters, and
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wetlands project categories were the most populated project categories. In addition, Lake Erie basin respondents had the most number of identified projects, followed by Lake Michigan, and then Lake Huron. The budgets for a vast majority of these identified restoration projects appeared to be less than $500,000, with the largest number of restoration projects being under $250,000.
30

25
Number of Projects

20

15

10

5

0
< $250K $250K-$500K $500K-$1M $1M-5M > $5 M

Category

Figure A-20: Number of non-federal/state responses indicating the average budget of the identified restoration projects Despite the relatively small size of these projects, nearly 40% of the non-federal/state respondents indicated that they will not be able to complete these projects without additional funding.
All 4%

None 41%

Some 55%

Figure A-21: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not the identified projects can be completed without additional funding
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Less than 15% of the non-federal/state respondents indicated that their projects are in the GLHI database. If this is an accurate representation of organizations basin wide, GLHI’s marketing among the Great Lakes basin needs to be more effective so more people are aware of its utility and purpose.
60%

Percent of Respondents

50%

40%

30%

20%

10%

0%
Yes No Some Not sure

Category

Figure A-22: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not the projects identified by an organization are listed in the GLHI database Interestingly, unlike a lack of familiarity with the GLHI database, 94% of the non-federal/state respondents were familiar with the GLRI funding mechanisms, which indicate that the federal/state agencies have done a very good job reaching out to the stakeholders to communicate funding opportunities.
No 6%

Yes 94%

Figure A-23: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not they are familiar with GLRI opportunities
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On being asked which sources have funded their organization in the past, federal and state agencies were the top two categories, followed closely by local government and private foundations.
80% 70%
Percent of Respondents

60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0%
Federal State Private Foundation Local Govt Individual Donors Coroporate Local Foundation Private Landow ner

Category

Figure A-24 Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the current sources of project funding Lastly, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service came up as the top two agencies most likely to provide funding for restoration projects.
80% 70%
Percent of Respondents

60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0%
USEPA USFWS NOAA Other USACE N/A

Category

Figure A-25: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the agencies that have funded their organization in the past Interestingly, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration were ranked ahead of U.S.
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Army Corps of Engineers. The Project Team believes that this could be because the Corps develops “cooperative agreements” and does not give out grants. Summarizing the survey data on the planning of restoration projects across the basin, the following conclusions can be made: • A majority of projects currently being planned have a funding need of less than $500K each, and there may be a need for the federal/state agencies to lead projects that are truly regional in nature; There is definitely a need for federal and other funding to complete these projects; Only a very small fraction of these projects are in the GLHI database; and Federal and state agencies have done an excellent job with marketing various GLRI funding opportunities. Implications of Local Match

• • • A .5

This section targeted the types of local match needed, the extent to which it is used, and the types of partnerships that are sought across the basin to meet local match needs. Non-federal/state respondents indicated that nearly half of the organizations can barely come up with even 25% project costs as match. The implication of this statement is that if a granting agency uses available of local match as a requirement or screening criteria, irrespective of the priority assigned to a project, a vast majority of the non-federal/state organizations simply would not be able to seek funding.
0% of costs 7%

> 50% of costs 14%

0-10% of costs 14%

25-50% of costs 30% 10-25% of costs 35%

Figure A-26: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the capacity to which an organization can meet match requirements In addition, in-kind services, partnering, and volunteer services were found to be the three top forms of matches non-federal/state respondents can come up with.
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80% 70%
Percent of Respondents

60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0%
in-kind services Partner w ith other organizations Volunteer services Cash Property No match is av ailable

Category

Figure A-27: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the types of match provided by their organization Nearly 90% of the non-federal/state respondents’ organizations seek partnerships with other organizations when they seek funding. If soothe survey results are indicative of conditions across the basin, a key strategy may be to assign points in an RFP to the types of partnerships sought by these agencies to seek better results.

No 1%

N/A 8%

Y es 91%

Figure A-28: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating whether or not their organization partner with other organizations The nature of these partnerships tend to be very local or, at best, regional in nature.
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60%
Percent of Those Responding

50%

40%

30%

20%

10%

0%
State governments Local governments Local nonprof its Regional nonprof its Local land trusts Private companies Regional/national land trusts National nonprofits

Category

Figure A-29: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the types of partners with which their organization has worked Lastly, further underscoring their importance, partnerships are sought in nearly three-fourths of all projects implemented across the Great Lakes basin.
0% of projects = 2% 0-25% of projects = 19%

75-100% of projects = 61%

25-50% of projects = 10% 50-75% of projects = 8%

Figure A-30: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the frequency of partnerships The next five questions sought to understand the key attractor when non-federal/state respondents seek these partnerships. The Project Team found that nearly 80% of the organizations think the ability to provide cash match is important to them when they seek partners.
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100%

80%

60%

Percent of Responses

40%

20%

0% 5 = Very important 4 = More important 3 = Important 2 = Less important 1 = Not important Total

Ranking

Figure A-31: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the importance of the ability to provide cash match for potential partnerships The Project Team also found that nearly 80% of the organizations think the ability to provide in-kind services as a local match is important to them when they seek partners.
100%

80%

60%

Percent of Responses

40%

20%

0% 5 = Very important 4 = More important 3 = Important 2 = Less important 1 = Not important Total

Ranking

Figure A-32: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the importance of the ability to provide in-kind services for potential partnerships Interestingly, a smaller emphasis was found to be placed on volunteer activity coordination, emphasizing that many of the non-federal/state organizations have access to volunteers on their own.
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100%

80%

60%

Percent of Responses

40%

20%

0% 5 = Very important 4 = More important 3 = Important 2 = Less important 1 = Not important Total

Ranking

Figure A-33: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the importance of the ability to provide or coordinate volunteer activities for potential partnerships The Project Team found that nearly 50% of the non-federal/state respondents indicated the ability to provide property or obtain permits is a key attractor when seeking partnerships. The Team believes that there needs to be an education of the non-federal/state respondents on modes of leveraging property as a significant form of match.
100%

80%

60%

Percent of Responses

40%

20%

0% 5 = Very important 4 = More important 3 = Important 2 = Less important 1 = Not important Total

Ranking

Figure A-34: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the importance of the ability to provide property for potential partnerships
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100%

80%

60%

Percent of Responses

40%

20%

0% 5 = Very important 4 = More important 3 = Important 2 = Less important 1 = Not important Total

Ranking

Figure A-35: Percent of non-federal/state responses indicating the importance of ability to obtain permits from partnerships Summarizing the survey data on the use of local match across the Great Lakes basin, the following conclusions can be made: • Only a small fraction of the non-federal/state respondents can come up with 25% match for a project and a requirement of match or use of match as a possible “priority” designator for an RFP may exclude priority projects from funding opportunities; In-kind services, partnering, and volunteer services are the three most common types of local matches offered; Nearly 90% of non-federal/state respondents seek partnerships which tend to be local or regional in nature; Top three key attractors in these partnerships are the following; o Available of in-kind match; o Ability to provide in-kind services; and o Volunteer coordination. There is a need for basin-wide education on the use of real estate as a key form of local match. Barriers to Implementation: Contrasting Responses from Non-federal/state respondents with Federal/state Respondents

• • •

• A .6

Critical to the success of this project, the largest set of questions targeted barriers to implementation of restoration projects. A wide variety of questions were asked under this category, such as who does an organization rely on to develop proposals, what types of federal
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regulations do they deal with, the organization’s unmet needs, barriers to project partnering, and barriers to implementing a design/build project. Request for Proposals When asked if communication and multiple RFPs simultaneously was a barrier to implementation, both non-federal/state respondents as well as federal/state respondents characterized it as a serious barrier. On a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being significant barrier and 1 being not a barrier, over 60% of respondents in both categories felt it deserved a rating of at least 4.
5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 25% 38% 20% 10% 8% 4

Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

3

2 Federal-state 30% 27% 30% 9% 4% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-36: Respondents’ ranking of “poor coordination and timing of multiple funding RFPs” as a barrier to project implementation Interestingly, a significant disconnect between the two sets of respondents was found when asked if the funding opportunities focused on holistic strategies. Nearly 65% of the nonfederal/state respondents felt it deserved at least a 4 rating, while only 45% of the federal/state respondents thought the same.

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Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 30% 35% 20% 10% 5% 4

3

2 Federal-state 20% 25% 29% 12% 14% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-37: Respondents’ ranking of “funding opportunities do not focus on holistic restoration strategies” as a barrier to project implementation Project Identification and Implementation Another key topic of disconnect between the two sets of respondents was on the topic of whether or not “project identification” is an unmet need. On a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being a significant unmet need and 1 being not a need, only 21% of the non-federal/state respondents consider it to be an unmet need deserving a rating of 4 or 5. On the other hand, almost twice as many federal/state respondents thought the same. This is not a surprising conclusion with respect to the non-federal/state respondents (see Figure A-18 and A-19 in Appendix A), nearly 70% of whom indicated their organization has a list of restoration projects already identified. This further indicates that those closer to on-the-ground projects may better understand the specific restoration needs in their area and may be in a better position to make those determinations. Two additional items are worth mentioning here: a) a majority of the non-federal/state respondents are from AOCs which means the processes adopted in AOCs to promote removal of BUIs and restoration of the AOCs is going well, and b) very few non-federal/state respondents have input projects into the GLHI database which could indicate either a lack of knowledge and/or a lack of appreciation for the fact that the organizations and projects within the Great Lakes basin are all part of one regional framework. Noting these two conclusions, it appears important that both sets of respondents continue to be engaged in information exchange. The non-federal/state respondents need to be educated on regional needs, and federal/state personnel need to understand that organizations throughout much of the basin have a list of restoration projects readily available. It is also important that both groups work toward a common project list that can be moved toward implementation.
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Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 13% 8% 15% 25% 39% 4

3

2 Federal-state 12% 30% 25% 14% 19% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-38: Respondents’ ranking of “project identification” as an unmet need for project implementation Both sets of respondents were in complete agreement (roughly 90% in each category) so far as project implementation funding being a significant unmet need.
5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 72% 11% 7% 5% 5% 4

Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

3

2 Federal-state 74% 6% 12% 5% 3% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-39: Respondents’ ranking of “project implementation funding” as an unmet need for project implementation Another topic of disconnect between the two sets of respondents is reflected in their understanding of the complexities of various federal/state compliance regulations. It appears
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the federal/state respondents are far more in tune with various regulations than the nonfederal/state respondents.
45% 40%
Percent of Respondents In that Category

35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0%
NPDES Other RCRA TSCA N/A

Non-federal/state

Federal-state

Figure A-40: Percent of respondents indicating which federal regulations have been applicable to restoration efforts Other topics of disconnect included the considered severity of impacts associated with project length restrictions (for a rating of 4 or 5, 40% of non-federal/state respondents versus 26% of federal/state respondents), and delayed payments from funding sources (for a rating of 4 or 5, 36% of non-federal/state respondents versus 19% of federal/state respondents). At least on the part of non-federal/state respondents, this reflects a need for greater flexibility for implementation time frames that can be suggested by the grantee rather than dictated by the RFP, internal agency guidance, or grant regulations, and the ability to secure money in time.

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Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 17% 23% 28% 17% 15% 4

3

2 Federal-state 5% 21% 30% 25% 18% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-41: Respondents’ ranking of “project length restrictions” as a barrier to project implementation
Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents
5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 8% 28% 15% 27% 22% 4

3

2 Federal-state 7% 12% 27% 36% 18% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-42: Respondents’ ranking of “delayed payments from funding sources” as a barrier to project implementation On the other hand, a majority of both sets of respondents seem to equally value the inability to obtain long-term maintenance funding as a key barrier to implementation.

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Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 30% 30% 20% 13% 7% 4

3

2 Federal-state 38% 32% 21% 5% 4% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-43: Respondents’ ranking of “inability to obtain long term maintenance funding for projects” as a barrier to project implementation Organizational Needs Both groups identified the need for additional engineering expertise, but there was greater difference between the two groups when examining the responses related to the need for technical staff, more technical experience, planning/design assistance, and internal institutional support. In all four cases, there was a disconnect between the two groups of respondents, in the following manner (for a rating of 4 or 5): • • • • When rating “more internal staff” as an unmet need, nearly 74% of federal/state respondents versus 51% of non-federal/state respondents When rating “more technical expertise/training of internal staff” as an unmet need, nearly 53% of federal/state respondents versus 36% of non-federal/state respondents When rating “planning/assistance design” as an unmet need, nearly 55% of federal/state respondents versus 42% of non-federal/state respondents When rating “more or improved internal institutional support” as an unmet need, nearly 51% of federal/state respondents versus 31% of non-federal/state respondents

The far greater unmet needs on the part of federal/state personnel may be due to recent budget cuts as well as understanding the need for sufficient oversight for the range of projects that will be funded under the GLRI. Furthermore, the Project Team believes that since the nonfederal/state respondent organizations are mostly small organizations of staff of less than ten and tend to partner in a vast majority of their projects, they are far more resilient to the impact of economic downturn.

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Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 23% 28% 20% 13% 16% 4

3

2 Federal-state 46% 28% 18% 5% 3% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-44: Respondents’ ranking of “more internal staff” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects

Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 16% 20% 24% 20% 20% 4

3

2 Federal-state 25% 28% 21% 19% 7% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-45: Respondents’ ranking of “more technical expertise/training of internal staff” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects

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Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 21% 21% 21% 15% 21% 4

3

2 Federal-state 33% 12% 32% 12% 11% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-46: Respondents’ ranking of “planning/design assistance” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects

Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 16% 15% 26% 21% 21% 4

3

2 Federal-state 32% 19% 19% 25% 5% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-47: Respondents’ ranking of “more or improved internal institutional support” as an unmet need of their organization for implementation of restoration projects Match Funding When asked if “can not meet matching requirements” is a barrier to implementation, both sets of respondents were in agreement that it is a barrier (57% of non-federal/state respondents versus 46% of federal/state respondents giving a rating of 4 or 5).
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Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 20% 37% 20% 17% 6% 4

3

2 Federal-state 23% 23% 21% 21% 11% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-48: Respondents’ ranking of “cannot meet matching requirements” as a barrier to project implementation Lastly, when asked if monetary match was an unmet need for project implementation, both sets of respondents agree that it is a serious barrier (63% of non-federal/state respondents versus 56% of federal/state respondents giving a rating of 4 or 5).
5= Significant Barrier Non-federal/state 38% 25% 18% 11% 8% 4

Contrasting non-federal/state respondents with federal/state respondents

3

2 Federal-state 23% 33% 14% 11% 19% 1 = Not a Barrier

0%

20%

40%

60%

80%

100%

Percent of Responses in That Category

Figure A-49: Respondents’ ranking of “monetary match” as an unmet need barrier for project implementation Summarizing the data presented so far on barriers to implementing projects across the Great Lakes basin, the following conclusions can be made:
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Although there is a disconnect between Great Lakes basin non-federal/state respondents and federal/state respondents on many topics, for most categories, it can be characterized as a of degree of awareness or different priorities rather than opposite viewpoints; Based on responses rated 4 or 5 (5 = significant barrier), non-federal/state respondents consider the following as more of a barrier than federal/state respondents: o Funding opportunities do not focus on holistic restoration strategies o Project length restrictions and delayed payments from funding sources o Can not meet matching requirements Based on responses rated 4 or 5 (5 = significant barrier), on the other hand, federal/state personnel consider the following as more of a barrier than the non-federal/state respondents: o The need for project identification o Inability to obtain long-term maintenance funding o The need for more internal staff/training o The need for more or improved internal communication support Lastly, both sets of respondents believe all of the following are barriers to implementation: o Poor coordination and timing of the proposal o The need for project funding o The need for planning and design assistance o The need for monetary match

Great Lakes Habitat and Species Strategic Planning Project

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