Community celebration with US Senator Michael Bennet and US Congressman Scott Tipton in 12/14 of the Hermosa Creek Watershed Protection Act (photo: San Juan Citizens Alliance)
River Protection Workgroups’ Reports
About the River Protection Workgroup
The River Protection Workgroup (RPW) is a community-driven project that covers five river and stream segments. The project brings diverse stakeholders together in a collaborative process to determine values needing protection – ecological, economic and social; to recommend the types of tools necessary, either existing or newly-developed, to protect the values; and to make recommendations and take action in the context of striking a balance between the protection of natural values and water development.
About the RPW’s History
The San Juan Public Lands Center (USFS and BLM) is required, in its public lands planning process, to evaluate rivers in their area for “eligibility” and “suitability” for the federal Wild and Scenic River designation. They released their draft Plan in 2007. In 2006, a Government to Government Roundtable met and discussed these issues. It became apparent that a collaborative, community-driven process was needed to engage the broader public in identifying values – economic, ecological, and social – for select river/stream segments and to determine if agreement can be found on the appropriate level(s) of protection. The San Juan Citizens Alliance approached the Southwestern Water Conservation District and they agreed to launch the project by forming a Steering Committee as the first step. The RPW Steering Committee entities and members are listed on the right.
Five local facilitated workgroups were convened on these streams/river segments including: Hermosa Creek; the Animas River above Baker’s Bridge; Vallecito Creek/Pine; San Juan – East and West Forks; and the Piedra River. In this phase, 144 different groups and entities were involved. There were 93 workgroup meetings held and an average of 25 to 30 participants attended each one. A total of 96 Steering Committee meetings took place during this time. Detailed “Information Sheets” were created for each workgroup and at the buttons on the left you can find workgroup final reports, maps, meeting notes, handouts, consensus workgroup Values Statements, and much more.
RPW Steering Committee Members as of 2017 and subject to change
Entities participating in the River Protection Workgroup Steering Committee include:
Group Recorders: Gail Binkly, Tami Graham and Jim Mimiaga