Stream Management Plans contain a comprehensive review of stream characteristics, maps, data, and recommended management strategies. The plans are meant to assist watershed municipalities and residents in planning for the protection of their property, infrastructure, water quality, and biological resources. Ensuring the health of the watershed’s environmental resources also helps to secure economic growth and quality of life for watershed residents.
Stream management plan’s are divided into sections called “management units” corresponding to individual stream segments. Each management unit summaries the condition of the stream bed and banks, streamside (riparian) vegetation, and the proximity and arrangement of roads, bridges and culverts. Each unit description identifies problems at the local scale and recommends specific management actions.
To date, six stream management plans have been completed in the watershed for: the mainstem of the Esopus Creek (above the reservoir), and five tributaries to the Esopus Creek – Broadstreet Hollow, Stony Clove Creek, Bush Kill, Bushnellsville Creek, and Beaver Kill. Stream assessments have been completed for Woodland Valley Creek, Warner Creek, and Birch Creek. A reassessment was completed for Stony Clove Creek. Eventually, every major tributary to the Esopus Creek will be assessed and data from these assessments will be incorporated into a stream management plan for the entire Ashokan Watershed.
Stream management plans are developed in consultation with the Ashokan Watershed Stream Management Program Stakeholder Council. The public is involved in stream management plan development and implementation through participation in working groups, landowner meetings to review maps and findings, volunteer events, and contribution to town adoption and governance.
The Towns of Shandaken, Olive, Woodstock, and Hurley have adopted the Esopus Creek Stream Management Plan. By adopting a stream management plan, a Town shows commitment to maintaining healthy local streams through stream management, and becomes eligible to receive funding to implement the plan. Stream management plans are guidance documents only and Town adoption is not a regulatory action.