Texas Watershed Planning

Sustaining Watershed Organization

Stakeholder input is essential and local presence is required for long-term stability. One size does not fit all when it comes to organization structure, coordination, or funding.

Models for Sustainability

Governmental Organizations
Local, State, and Federal governments sometimes allocate permanent funding for local resource protection (Example: National Estuary Programs)

Quasi-governmental Organizations
Require legislative action for creation (Example: River Authorities; Underground Water Conservation Districts)

Non-governmental Organizations
Tax exempt organizations under Section 501(c) of the U.S. Tax Code (Example: Foundations' Trusts)

  • Noted for their ability to create and sustain grass-roots stewardship
  • Self-funded (usually rely on donations and grants)
  • Often viewed as providing a counterbalance to government and industry


Fee-based Systems
Interlocal/Intergovernmental Contractual Agreements (Example: Regional Planning Partnerships; Task Forces)

  • Participation is strictly voluntary
  • Funded through interlocal contracts
  • Often administered by academic or other tax exempt organization
  • Can provide services to local or regional governments in addition to fostering stewardship

Hybrid Models
Tax exempt organizations that also receive permanent support from local, state, or federal government (Example: Coastal Bend Bays Foundation)

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