Annual report of the Indian Creek Watershed


The Indian Creek Watershed Project (Indian Creek Watershed Project) Watershed Management Plan (WMP) was completed in 2007. This plan paved the way for implementation grant funding from a ‘US EPA Section 319’ grant through the Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) to Historic Hoosier Hills RC&D, the project’s sponsor.

This first phase of that grant, which commenced February 26th, 2009; provides funding for the implementation of ‘Best Management Practices (BMPs)’, as identified in the management plan, to help improve water quality in the watershed.

This grant phase totals $282,212, with $143,000 earmarked for cost-share implementation.

It also provides funding for a Watershed Coordinator, and Cary Louderback was hired to fill that position.

Part one of this report primarily highlights some of the work the coordinator accomplished in 2010, in support of the project. Part two provides information about the accomplishments and successes of the entire project and the many people working to support Indian Creek Watershed Project.

Please refer to the 2009 Year-end report for earlier information.


Coordinator’s accomplishments:

– Recruited potential applicants for cost-share.

– Reached over 100-percent allocation of the $143,000 available for cost-share funding.

– Developed and gained approval for all BMP implementation planning.

– Developed and implemented tools to track activities and funding.

– Maintained biweekly reporting and invoicing to IDEM, on schedule.

– Managed completion of over 50-percent of BMP implementations scheduled ($73,518).

– Producers who have completed work are 100-percent paid ($73,518).

– BMPs to expend the remaining implementation funds are fully planned and producers are scheduled to install those BMPs in 2011.

– Per the accepted NRCS estimation worksheets, the following percentages of annual load reductions, identified as “goals” in the WMP, have been realized due to the BMPs installed:

Sedimentation: 230-percent; phosphorous: 18-percent; nitrogen: 70-percent.

Another $75,000 worth of BMPs have been requested by producers (signed applications on file) and may be planned and installed upon receipt of additional funding.


Project accomplishments (by coordinator and others):

– Match dollars reported, in the amount of $128,976, have consistently exceeded established requirements. The total match required is $188,141. (Failure to report on the scheduled pace with 319 funds being expended results in IDEM suspending payments).

– Outreach and Education requirements, as identified in the grant contract, have consistently been accomplished well ahead of schedule. At this point, the grant life cycle is about two-thirds completed, and the Outreach and Education requirements are 92-percent completed.

In addition to the 50 specific grant requirement line items, an additional 72 items have been accomplished, documented and reported. These efforts are ongoing.

– This grant was conditioned on volunteer water monitoring. Bonnie Fancher, Switzerland County High School teacher and Steering Committee President, along with her Advanced Placement Environmental Science students have provided all of the testing, data compilation and reporting that is required.

Additionally, Bonnie Fancher and her students have donated a huge amount of hours to the project through involvement in Outreach and Education activities both within and outside the classroom and regular school hours.

Bonnie Fancher has worked very diligently to secure funding for the project from various sources. The Indian Creek Watershed Project has been a part of Bonnie Fancher’s project based teaching since 2001 and the Indian Creek Watershed Project will continue to be a part of her teaching until at least 2012, probably longer if efforts to gain additional funding are successful.

The “hands-on” work provides wonderful opportunities for youth and adults to learn.

Coordinator Cary Louderback and Bonnie Fancher work very well together on practically an everyday basis.

– The Indian Creek Watershed Project Steering Committee meetings have continued to draw substantial numbers of attendees. The average number for seven meetings during 2010 was 21. Additional officer positions are being filled and a subcommittee was recently formed for the purpose of reviewing candidates for cost-share.

Attendees generally include: several different Partners’ representatives, landowner(s), students and the sponsor’s coordinator. The Steering Committee has accomplished much work and all things necessary to sustain the project.

– Many Partners and individuals worked together to develop and submit a grant application to IDEM on August 30th, 2010 in the amount of $403,995, with $202,000 in cost-share funding. Though the Indian Creek Watershed Project has weathered some extremely difficult and time consuming circumstances, the work has continued on schedule, without interruption, and with unfailing professionalism by all tasked with carrying out the project’s plans.

The project’s large numbers of volunteers continue to participate; they are indispensable.

I believe the Indian Creek Watershed Project to be a “model” for other watershed projects. I am excited about continuing this work throughout 2011 and hopefully beyond.

– Cary Louderback,

Coordinator Indian Creek Watershed Project