II. Annual Performance Goals

This section presents the Service's Annual Performance Plan for the budget year FY 1999, provides FY 1998 projected performance, and provides past year FY 1997 accomplishments. The format for this section includes a summary narrative for each of the three GPRA Program Activities. Exhibit A presents a complete picture of the performance related to each of the annual performance goals comprising the GPRA Program Activity. Goals and indicators reflect performance expected from total budgetary resources available for implementing the Annual Performance Plan; however, only appropriated dollars are shown in the tables.

II.1 Description of GPRA Program Activity - Sustainability of Fish & Wildlife Populations

The goals under the GPRA Program Activity - Sustainability of Fish and Wildlife Populations encompass the specific statutory mandates, international treaties, and agreements delegated to the Service and the broad conservation ethics of the nation. What began as a group of laws which sought to manage migratory game species has evolved into a broader net of conservation and protection statutes based on the realization that the continued variety and balance of plants and animals makes existence on earth possible.

The long-term goals comprising this GPRA program activity include the protection, conservation, and recovery of plants and animals of importance to the nation. The long-term goals that deals with the conservation and protection of migratory bird populations recognizes them as an international resource with special federal responsibility - Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918. Further, birds are valued and highly visible components of natural ecosystems that may be indicators of environmental quality. The long-term goal that deals with imperiled species focuses on the protection and recovery of species listed as threatened or endangered and the protection of candidate species. The living resources of this Nation's inland and coastal aquatic ecosystems has been a core responsibility of the Service for more than 120 years. Within historical time, native fish communities have undergone significant and adverse changes. These changes generally tend toward reduced distributions, lowered diversity, and increased numbers of species considered rare. The long-term goal addressing these resource issues focuses the Service and its partners on the importance of maintaining stable fish population and taking actions to restore declining interjurisdictional fish populations. The remaining long-term goals directly emphasis our responsibilities for protection of marine mammals and recognition that wildlife knows no geophysical boundaries. For conservation and diversity to succeed, we must extent our efforts beyond our borders.

II.2 Proposed Legislation:

Performance goals and accomplishment of those goals are not contingent on enactment of legislation during the fiscal year covered by this Annual Performance Plan.
 
 II.3 EXHIBIT A
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Sustainability of Fish & Wildlife Populations
 
Long-term Goal: Migratory Birds
1.1 Through 2003, 20% of regional migratory bird populations demonstrate improvements in their population status because of management actions that have either increased their numbers or, in some cases, reduced the number of conflicts due to overabundance. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal:  
1.1.1 By September 30, 1999, an increase of 2% of regional migratory bird populations of management concern (which adequate population information is available) demonstrate improvements in their populations status because of management actions that have either increased their numbers or, in some cases, reduced the number of conflicts due to overabundance. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted 
Plan 
Actual 
1.% increase in regional migratory bird populations of management concern with improved status.   [1 pop.] .8% .8% 
[2 populations]
2% 
[5 populations] 
Baseline for Performance Measure Above: 
1. # regional migratory bird populations of management concern that have adequate population information is available through existing surveys.  250 250 250 250 250
Workload and Other Performance Statistics
2.. # management actions initiated for species of management concern. 
0
5 5 10 10
Refuges & Wildlife/Refuge O&M
3. # migratory bird surveys & censuses 5,200 5,375 3,960 5,639 4,160
4. # migratory bird studies & investigations 660 685 463 746 500
 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
1.1.2 By September 30, 1999, an increase of 2% of regional migratory bird populations of management concern will have baseline information available for establishing reliable population levels, and monitoring programs will be initiated or continued for those species. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. % increase in baseline information for regional migratory bird populations [populations w/o reliable baseline 190 populations]  0     1%  2% 
2. # regional migratory bird populations of management concern. 400     400 400
3.% regional migratory bird populations of management concern with reliable baseline information & ongoing monitoring program . 52.5%  52.5% 52.5% 53.5% 
[214 populations]
54.5%  
[218 populations]
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goals Objective:

A key objective of annual goals 1.1.1 and 1.1.2, contributing to the success of the long-term goal, is to improve populations status for migratory birds whose populations evidence decline or other problems, including over abundance. These annual goals can be accomplished by implementing appropriate species and habitat conservation and management actions early enough to avoid other social, economic, or biological problems while improving populations monitoring activities for which reliable information on species status is not available.

The Service is responsible for the management of game and nongame birds, including 58 species that may be legally hunted as game birds and 778 nongame species, all of which are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918.

Resource Condition:

Many migratory bird populations are currently at risk due to a variety of factors that have caused significant declines in numbers, while other populations have outstripped the ability of key landscapes to support the burden of excessive population growth. There have been dramatic declines of one-fifth of all migratory bird species during the past 30 years. Of the 400 regional migratory bird populations of management concern, only 250 of those populations have reliable baseline information and on-going monitoring programs. Further, the Service recognizes 124 species as "Nongame Birds of Management Concern," meaning without immediate attention; these species will be future candidates for listing under the Endangered Species Act. Some populations, such as Mid-continent snow geese, are increasing faster than their habitats can support them. Over abundance of populations can result in massive destruction of ecosystems and significant economic losses on agricultural lands.
 
 
FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal:This goal will be achieved through three principal strategies: (1) Migratory bird monitoring activities will be increased by establishing survey projects for species of concern for which little baseline population information currently exits. These species include snow geese, shorebirds, and certain land birds. (2) Greater emphasis will be placed on implementation of newly developed conservation plans for migratory birds -- populations potentially affected by management actions will be monitored to evaluate population-level responses. (3) Permit regulations will be established that will help diminish the detrimental impact of several problematic species.

This goal will be achieved through three principal strategies: (1) migratory bird monitoring activities will be increased by establishing survey projects for species of concern for which little baseline population information currently exits (these species include snow geese, shorebirds, and certain land birds); (2) greater emphasis will be placed on implementation of newly developed conservation plans for migratory birds -- populations potentially affected by management actions will be monitored to evaluate population-level responses. (3) permit regulations will be established that will help diminish the detrimental impact of several problematic species.

The Service's FY 1999 budget includes an additional $1 million above the FY 1998 operating level for Migratory Bird Conservation and Monitoring. This increase will ensure that the targeted level of performance will be achieved. Service programs directly involved with migratory bird management efforts include the North American Waterfowl Management Plan, the Refuge System, and the Migratory Bird Management Program.

Benefits Realized from Goal Achievement:

GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Sustainability of Fish &Wildlife Populations
 
Long-term Goal: Imperiled Species 
1.2 Through 2003, 40% of endangered and threatened species populations listed a decade or more are stabilized or improved and 60 species in decline are precluded from the need for listing under the Endangered Species Act
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
1.2.1 By September 30, 1999, 13% of endangered and threatened species populations listed a decade or more are stabilized or improved and 10 species in decline are precluded from the need for listing under the Endangered Species Act.
Performance Measures FY 1997 
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. % listed species populations listed a decade or more are improved and/or stabilized [baseline for FY'99 = 499]         13%
2. # species approved for removal from candidacy.  11 7   25 10
3. # species approved for removal from candidacy as a result of conservation agreements precluding need to list 7 5   20 8
4. # species included in proposed rules to delist/downlist published in the Fed. Register. 0 7   20 12
5. # species included in final rules to delist or downlist.  0 0   5 3
6. # total acres protected, restored, or enhanced under HCPs. --- 2,000,000   2,500,000 2,500,000
7. # listed and/or candidate species covered by those HCPs.  --- 200   250 250
Workload and Other Performance Statistics
Fisheries/Hatchery O&M/LSRCP
1. # cooperator requests to initiate new fish propagation programs.  7 13 13 21 21
2. # recovery plans requiring fisheries captive fish propagation programs. 
42
47
42 53 53
3. # monitoring requirements for propagation programs.  24 31 46 38 38
Refuges & Wildlife/Refuge O&M
1. # surveys and census 3,500 3,581 1,164 3,863 1,265
2. # studies and investigations 640 660 270 720 275
3. # listed animals and/or plants reintroduced 485 493 62,865 1,333 63,000
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

The Service, in the Department of the Interior, and the National Marine Fisheries Service, in the Department of Commerce, share responsibility for administration of the Endangered Species Act. Generally, the National Marine Fisheries deals with those species occurring in marine environments and anadromous fish, while the Service is responsible for terrestrial and freshwater species and migratory birds. Additionally, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, in the Department of Agriculture, oversees importation and exportation of listed terrestrial plants.

Goal Objective:

Protecting endangered and threatened species and restoring them to a secure status in the wild is the primary goal of the Endangered Species program of the Service. The responsibilities and strategies of the Endangered Species program include:

 

Consultation plays a critical role in the Service's ability to protect and recover threatened and endangered species. Through section 7, the Service works with federal partners to minimize the adverse impacts of federal actions on listed, proposed, and candidate species and designated critical habitat. Additionally, the Service uses section 10 and the Habitat Conservation Planning (HCP) process to allow non-federal activities to proceed while promoting conservation of imperiled species and their habitats. Potential impacts to newly listed species are addressed via new or reinitiated section 7 consultations and new HCPs; existing HCPs may be modified to include newly listed species if they were not already covered. Often, the section 7 and 10 processes facilitate implementation of recovery actions, thus furthering the long-term conservation prospects of listed species. Thousands of federal actions are reviewed each year by the Service, which constitutes an immense workload due to case-specific analysis and interpersonal communication that is required.

Status of the Threatened and Endangered Species and Candidate Species:

As of July 31,1998, there were 1,118 U.S. species listed as threatened or endangered of those 636 species have been listed a decade or more. The Service anticipates adding 100 species to the list in FY 1999. The Service anticipates publishing the Annual Notice of Review of all candidate species for listing in the Federal Register in January 1999 and anticipates having 100 - 200 candidate species.

FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal

The Service's FY 1999 performance target (which does not include the WA State Salmon Recovery Project) relies on a $28.6 million budget increase, over the FY 1998 level, necessary to meet the goal of stabilizing or improving 19% of endangered or threatened species populations listed a decade or more and precluding the need to list 10 species whose populations are in decline. These additional resources will strengthen the effectiveness of the ESA. Specifically, increased resources will permit an acceleration of consultation and recovery activities by providing additional professional staff to assist landowners by issuing accurate and timely biological opinions, addressing the increased demand for section 7 programmatic consultations, and developing or monitoring the growing number of habitat conservation plans and section 10 Safe Harbor agreements. The FY 1999 requirements for recovery will increase as a result of the additional 49 species listed in FY 1998. Recovery Plans must be completed for these species within 2 years of listing. The Service will delist species once recovery has been achieved and downlist species from endangered to threatened when appropriate.

Within the increase, additional focus will be given to developing and implementing multi-species habitat conservation plans for 90 species in the Mojave desert in California, including the desert tortoise, bighorn sheep, and fringed-toed lizard. The Service will have to assist seven federal agencies, three state agencies, 50 municipalities, and numerous private landowners on conservation strategies in this desert area.

Through the consultation program, the Service works with federal partners to identify and resolve potential species conflicts in the early stages of federal project planning and with non-federal partners in the HCP process. Approximately 250 species will benefit from the restoration, enhancement, or protection of over 2.5 million acres covered in HCPs through FY 1999.

The Service anticipates the removal of ten candidates as a result of conservation agreements thus precluding the need to list the species under the ESA. The Service will focus efforts on a collaborative partnership conservation effort to benefit High Plains species. In FY 1999, the Service anticipates processing an additional 12 proposals to downlist or delist species and an additional 3 final rules.

As further support for the HCP effort, the HCP land acquisition and grants to states and territories program, promoting the recovery and conservation of threatened and endangered species, is an integral strategy for accomplishing our FY 1999 performance target.

Many of America's native fish populations, including salmon, trout, and shad, are listed as endangered, threatened, or in decline. In FY 1999, increased efforts in restoration and recovery of native fishes, including endangered shortnose sturgeon, greenback cutthroat trout, and Gila trout are anticipated and reflected in the performance target for FY 1999. These efforts are also intended to reverse declines in native fish populations and thereby preclude additional listing actions under the ESA. The Service will focus on efforts to improve fish passage in the upper reaches of many streams and waterways now blocked by dams or other impediments to enhance natural fish spawning habitat and improve opportunities for reproduction. The Service continues to work cooperatively with the State of Maine and the National Marine Fisheries Service on the restoration of Atlantic Salmon populations in order to preclude the need to list the species.

The ability to recover or improve the status of threatened or endangered species also relies on the willingness of private landowners to improve or enhance habitat for these species. The performance improvement over the FY 1998 level reflects this recognition by offering a cooperative Landowner Incentive program totaling $5 million.

Benefits Realized from Goal Achievement:

Implementation of this goal will provide two specific benefits both to the resource and the public.

 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Sustainability of Fish & Wildlife Populations 
 
Long-term Goal: Interjurisdictional Fish 
1.3 Through 2003, 100% of stable interjurisdictional fish populations remain at or above current levels and 3% of depressed populations are restored to self-sustaining or, where appropriate, harvestable levels. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
1.3.1 By September 30, 1999, baselines for interjurisdictional fish populations are established. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. develop status & trends baseline for interjurisdictional (IJ) fish populations by 9/30/99 --- ---   Baseline established Baseline established
Workload and Other Performance Statistics 
Fisheries/Hatchery O&M/LSRCF
1. Cooperator requests to initiate propagation programs. 12 16 20 21 18
2. Management plans requiring captive fish propagation programs.  45 52 66 60 60
3. Monitoring requirements for propagation programs.  38 47 47 57 49
Fisheries/Fish and Wildlife Management
4. # approved management plans for IJ fish
144
170 175 183 183
5. # surveys and investigations on IJ fish 183 225 201 230 230
Refuges & Wildlife/Refuge O&M
6. # surveys and census  220 235 155 260 160
7. # studies and investigations  100 119 45 121 46
8. Alaskan IJ fish runs  396 396 396 396 396
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objective:

Protecting the living resources of the Nation's inland and coastal aquatic ecosystems has been a core responsibility of the Service for more than 120 years. This goal focuses the attention of the Service and its partners on the importance of maintaining currently stable fish populations, while taking actions to restore declining interjurisdictional fish populations.

 Resource Condition:

Many native fish populations are declining, or are at historic low levels, due to habitat degradation, inadequate fish passage, overfishing, introductions of nonindigenous species, poor land management practices, or urbanization.

As a consequence of resource perturbations, many interjurisdictional fishery populations have been decimated. Populations of sturgeon, river herring, shad, and salmon have plummeted along the Atlantic Coast. Atlantic salmon populations are currently less than 1% of historic levels. Before declining Atlantic striped bass populations were restored, depressed fisheries cost an estimated 7,500 jobs and $200 million between 1974 and 1980. On the West Coast, 214 stocks are at risk of extinction and over 100 salmon and steelhead stocks have already been extirpated from once productive waters. The Pacific salmon in Washington, Oregon, and California, valued at $200 million in 1980, dropped to only $120 million in 1990, and is well below that today. Further, interjurisdictional fish species support critical recreational and commercial fisheries. In 1996, 35 million anglers spent $15.4 billion on fishing trips, $19.2 billion on equipment, and $3.8 billion on licenses, stamps, tags, and other items. Interjurisdictional fish support a vast commercial fishery .

FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal:

The Service will incorporate a number of strategies to achieve the FY 1999 annual performance goal; including increased emphasis and resources directed toward:

Initial steps are being taken in FY 1998 and FY 1999, to complete the development of status and trends baseline data for interjurisdictional fish populations. Status and trends information is critical to the maintenance of stable populations and the conservation of declining aquatic species. We have established a target date of September 1999 for completion of the baseline data for interjurisdictional fish populations.

To achieve the planned FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal assumes an increase of $800,000 over the FY 1998 level for restoring the diversity and health of aquatic ecosystems by removing barriers to fish passage. Today, U.S. rivers contain over 75,000 dams larger than 6 feet and 2.5 million smaller dams. These impediments block spawning habitat for many anadromous and migratory fish species.
 
 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Sustainability of Fish & Wildlife Populations 
 
Long-term Goal: Marine Mammals 
1.4 Through 2003, 100% of marine mammal populations, over which the Service jurisdiction, will be at sustainable population levels or protected under conservation agreements. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
1.4.1 Through September 30, 1999, 100% of marine mammal populations over which the Service has jurisdiction will be at sustainable population levels or protected under conservation agreements. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. % marine mammal populations at sustainable levels or protected under conservation agreements. 

Marine Mammal Populations addressed: 
Polar Bear-Southern Beaufort Sea 
Polar Bear -Chukchi/Bering Seas 
Pacific Walrus 
Northern Sea Otter ---- southeast Alaska 
southcentral Alaska 
southwest Alaska 
Washington State

100 100 100 100 100
 

Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objective:

The Service's manages the Northern sea otter in Alaska and Washington State, polar bear and Pacific walrus in Alaska, and supports efforts to recover the listed Southern sea otter in California and West Indian manatee in Florida and Puerto Rico. This Annual Performance Goal focuses the Service attention specifically on non-listed marine mammals. Those marine mammals that are listed as threatened or endangered species are included in Annual Performance Goal 1.2.1.

Resource Condition:

FY 1999 Performance -- Achieving the Goal:

The Service's role includes preparing and reviewing species management plans; developing, reviewing, and revising stock assessment reports in coordination with Alaskan Native organizations; implementing the 1973 international Agreement on the Conservation of Polar Bears; developing cooperative management agreements with Alaska Native organizations to conserve marine mammals and provide co-management of subsistence use by Alaska Natives; developing and implementing international agreements (e.g., with Russia) to govern the conservation and management of shared walrus and polar bear populations; developing and implementing marine mammal incidental take regulations for activities other than commercial fishing (e.g., oil and gas operations); conducting harvest monitoring projects for polar bears and walrus taken by Alaskan Natives; and implementing a Marking, Tagging, and Reporting Program for all polar bears, walrus, and sea otters harvested by Alaskan Natives.

The Service is committed to fulfilling its requirements under the MMPA to maintain marine mammals at OSP levels. The Service will maintain the FY 1998 funding level of $2 million to support this goal.
 
 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Sustainability of Fish & Wildlife Populations
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
 BA ($000)
FY 2000 
Proposed 
BA ($000)
 
Long-term Goal: Species of International Concern     
1.5 Through 2003, 40% of transborder species over which the Service has jurisdiction will have improved conservation status or be included under a conservation project; and conservation projects for 40 additional priority species of international concern will be initiated 
 
FY1999 Annual Performance Goal:     
1.5.1 By September 30, 1999, 19% of transborder species over which the Service has jurisdiction will benefit from improved conservation efforts. 
1.5.2 By September 30, 1999, 22 priority species of international concern will benefit from improved conservation efforts. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1.% of transborder species benefitting from improved conservation efforts [baseline=400]  16% 17% 17% 19% 19%
2. # of priority international species benefitting from improved conservation efforts 15 15 - 22 22
3. Establish a baseline for priority international species - - - Establish baseline Establish baseline
Workload and Other Performance Statistics
1. # of conservation projects initiated for international and transborder species 55 55 60 65 65
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objective:

The primary objective of this annual goal is to improve the conservation status of international species of concern through improved cooperative conservation strategies. Conservation of international wildlife recognizes the fact that geophysical boundaries have no meaning for wildlife and that for conservation to succeed it must go beyond man-made borders. The goal focuses first on those transborder species for which the United States is a migratory stopover and, second, on those other international priority species that provide us with the greatest potential to impact their sustainability worldwide.

Resource Condition:

The current status of transborder species and other international priority species ranges from stable to highly endangered or nearing extinction. Presently, there is an estimated 400 transborder species and potentially thousands of international species. The international programs attempt to conserve remaining populations of endangered species and prevent stable populations from declining. However, efforts to conserve these species effectively vary due to species distribution, population growth, and related threats, as well as the level of cooperation from partner countries. For example, the Service and its partners have joined forces in successful efforts to protect priority species of international importance such as the Swainsons' Hawk, West Indies Whistling Duck, polar bears, and elephants. However, concentrated Service efforts with partners have helped stabilize some rhino populations, while other populations of tigers and rhinos still experience decline. This demonstrates that the Service's best efforts cannot consistently guarantee that we will be able to halt declines in species facing severe conservation pressures in other countries. Given the large number of potential international species, the Service will have established a baseline for international priority species by the end of FY 1999. The Service also is moving toward defining "conservation efforts" in such a way as to equate to biologically justifiable conservation status.

FY1999 Performance -- Achieving the Goal:

The Service international affairs program directs the development and implementation of international policies, treaties, agreements, and conventions for the conservation of wildlife, and provides U.S. leadership and assistance to other countries for wildlife conservation, wildlife reserve management, and protection of global biodiversity. It directly impacts international conservation through the technical assistance, training and funding it provides for sustainable conservation projects, which equip foreign partners with the tools critical for effective conservation management. The international affairs program has spent 20 years helping to train nature reserve managers supporting projects that protect highly endangered species and assisting rural communities to develop economic alternatives to conserve local wildlife. The Service coordinates its international efforts with other Service partners, federal and state land and resource management agencies, the Department of State, the Agency for International Development and Service counterpart agencies in other countries, as well as numerous non-governmental organizations to ensure that the best scientific data is brought to bear on conservation issues and that the best possible use is made of available funds. Projects range from those addressing neotropical migratory bird conservation to elephant, rhinoceros and tiger conservation efforts implemented by range countries using anti-poaching measures and other conservation strategies, as well as efforts to assist Monarch butterflies, which migrate from breeding areas in the U.S. and Canada to wintering grounds in central Mexico before returning north.
In FY 97 the International Programs initiated 55 conservation projects addressing international species. Achievement of the FY 1999 performance goal assumes additional resources of $850,000 funded through the Resource Management Account - International Affairs and the Multi-species Conservation Fund. Areas of focus include a new $250,000 Russia initiative, a new $500,000 Asian elephant conservation program, and a $100,000 increase for the rhino and tiger conservation program..
 
 
II. 1 Description of GPRA Program Activity -- Habitat Conservation: Network of Lands and Waters

An ecologically diverse network of lands and waters -- of various ownerships -- is conserved in cooperation with others to provide habitats for migratory birds, imperiled species, interjurisdictional fish, marine mammals, and species of international concern associated with those ecosystems.

The goals under the GPRA Program Activity - Habitat Conservation -- recognizes the fundamental importance of habitat to the self-sustainability of fish and wildlife and plants. Habitat includes a rich variety of community types and cover a range of extending from nearly aquatic wetlands along our coasts and myriad rivers, lakes and streams, to mountain tops and arid desert locations. We realize that protection of habitats is equal in importance as that of animal and plant communities. "Patchwork conversions of natural landscapes for agriculture, silviculture, and development result in a fragmentation that leaves small remnant areas of natural ecosystems. As these natural patches become smaller and more isolated, their ability to maintain healthy populations of many plant and animal species is reduced. As individual species are lost from each fragment, the community changes and both species and ecosystem diversity are reduced. Thus, large numbers of natural ecosystems are now in danger." [Our Living Resources-A Report to the Nation on the Distribution, Abundance, and Health of U.S. Plants, Animals, and Ecosystems, 1995]

The long-term goals comprising this GPRA program activity include the protection restoration and enhancement of lands managed by the Service, stewardship of infrastructure on Service owned lands, and voluntary restoration and enhancement of others' lands.

II.2 Proposed Legislation:

Performance goals and accomplishment of those goals are not contingent on enactment of legislation during the fiscal year covered by the Annual Performance Plan.

II.2 EXHIBIT A
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Habitat Conservation : Network of Lands & Waters 
 
Long-term Goal: Habitat Conservation On Service Lands 
2.1 Through 2003, meet the identified habitat needs of Service lands by ensuring that 93,654,000 acres (total acreage managed by FWS) are protected, of which 3,500,000 acres will be enhanced or restored. In addition, 80% of contaminated cleanup projects on Service lands will be completed according to their original schedule.
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
2.1.1 By September 30, 1999, meet the identified habitat needs of the Service lands by ensuring that 93,567,296 acres are protected, of which 3,303,341 acres will be enhanced or restored. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998*
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. # acres managed by FWS [cumulative]. 92,873,832 93,134,000 93,312,296 93,394,000 93,567,296
2. # acres enhanced or restored in the National Wildlife Refuge System. [annual data ] 2,698,156 3,237,000 3,347,210 3,317,957 3,303,341
Workload and Other Performance Statistics
North American Wetlands Conservation Fund 
1. # acres of habitat protected 98,490 122,652 122,652 151,047 151,047

Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objective:

Habitat is fundamental for self-sustaining populations of fish, wildlife, and plants as well as for functional ecosystems. The Service's goal is to conserve fish and wildlife by protecting and restoring the habitat on which they depend. The National Wildlife Refuge System, with more than 500 refuges and 93 million acres, protects virtually every type of habitat found in the United States for the benefit of fish and wildlife species.
The objective of this goal is to protect and manage habitat quality of the lands and waters owned and managed by the Service, principally the National Wildlife Refuge System. Protecting, enhancing, or restoring habitat involves placing acreage under active management practices that are compatible with fish and wildlife management.

FY 1999 Performance -Achieving the Goal

The FY 1999 performance targets for habitat protection and restoration and enhancement are based on the $3.2 million increase enacted over the FY 1998 level for Refuge Operations - Habitat Improvement, and expansion of land ownership by 236,000 acres through appropriations of $87.5 million to Land Acquisition and the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund. Protection targets for this goal reflect increased size of the National Wildlife Refuge System through the addition of new lands. Funding for land acquisition is provided through the Migratory Bird Conservation Fund (made up of annual receipts from Duck Stamps sales, refuge recreation fees, import duties on arms and ammunition, etc.) and the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) appropriations. The funds are generally obligated, but not necessarily expended, for specific projects during the Fiscal Year.
Habitat restoration and enhancement on Service lands, which includes ongoing annual management activities, are vital to meeting fish and wildlife needs on refuges. Approximately 37% or $69.7 million of the annual operations budget of the National Wildlife Refuge System is devoted to this function. During FY 1997, the refuge system restored or improved over 3.2 million acres of important wildlife habitat. For FY 1999, the refuges have identified an additional 6,000 acres of habitat requiring restoration or enhancement necessary for endangered plant communities and to improve the biological integrity of unique ecosystems. This level of performance assumes an increase of $3.2 million over the FY 1998 level for Resource Management - Refuge Operations\Habitat Improvement. Strategies to achieve targeted performance for FY 1999 include:

These efforts, coupled with the work accomplished through the North American Wetland Conservation Fund will provide for restoration and enhancement of 3,303,341 acres during FY 1999.
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
2.1.2 By September 30,1999, complete 80% of contaminated cleanup projects on Service lands. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. % (#) cleanup projects completed. [data reported on annual basis] 40 76% 

(32 of 42 projects

80% 

(24*of 30)

80% 

(32 of 40 projects)

80% 

(19*of 24 projects)

*Change in estimates of projects reflects the scope in projects undertaken. Projects planned were smaller in scope with costs of $80,000 each to complete; projects completed in FY 1998 and being undertaken in FY1999 are larger in scope costing an average of $100,000 each to complete.

Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Providing quality habitats by investigating and cleaning up contaminated sites is a complex need that demands constant attention. The refuge system maintains a budget of $4.7 million to carry out this activity including $2.4 million for cleanup of smaller scale contaminated sites. Larger scale cleanups may be funded from a Departmentwide account. This goal reports on the smaller scale projects funded within refuge operations.
 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Habitat Conservation: Network of Lands & Waters 
 
Long-term Goal: Infrastructure Stewardship On Service Lands 
2.2 By 2003, 23% of mission critical water management and public use facilities will be in fair or good condition as measured by the Facilities Condition Index. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
2.2.1 By September 30, 1999 collect field data on the initial real property baseline data set and complete maintenance management update.
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. Develop & field test standardized real property inventory database by April, 1999.  N/A N/A   In Process In Process
2. Verify real property inventory database with regions/field stations by September, 1999.  N/A N/A   In Process In Process
3. Collect maintenance management system data including cross link for all property numbers by June, 1999. N/A N/A   In Process In Process
4. Peer review & finalize MMS data set by August, 1999.  N/A N/A   In Process In Process
Workload and Other Performance Statistics 
Fisheries/Hatchery O&M/LSRCF
1. # unfunded projects in maintenance backlog. 1,505 1,709 1,796 1,996 1,996
2. Monetary value of projects in maintenance backlog ($ in millions)
$123
$227 $218 $264 $264
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objectives:

This goal improves the condition of fish and wildlife resources and ensures safe use and access for employees and visitors by providing critical maintenance on National Wildlife Refuges and National Fish Hatcheries. The objectives are: (a) identify Servicewide maintenance and rehabilitation needs, (b) establish maintenance and construction priorities based on critical health, safety, natural, and cultural resource projects (c) reduce the current backlog of maintenance projects by 8.6 percent, (d) reduce pollution on Service lands, and (e) ensure that Service employees and visitors continue to have safe access and use of refuges and hatcheries.

A wide array of equipment and facilities is necessary to enable carrying out the wide variety of land management and public use functions within the refuge and hatchery systems. Adequate maintenance of facilities and equipment is essential to the efficient and effective management of lands. The management of data related to maintenance is undergoing substantial change within the Department of Interior at present. Standardized definitions and approaches are being applied to the development of 5- year plans describing maintenance needs. Simultaneously, federal accounting standards dealing with management of plant, property and equipment is changing perspectives on frameworks for measuring overall health of facility infrastructure. Emphasis is shifting from a tendency for agencies to focus on size of maintenance backlogs to focusing on condition of facilities. This change in approach will require improved data to describe and estimate the replacement value of all equipment and facilities. The Service is actively moving to adopt these evolving new procedures and will be in a position at the end of the first quarter of FY 2000 to comprehensively display needs in this new mode.

Facilities and Condition:

Service infrastructure includes over 5,000 buildings, 7,000 miles of roads, 3,000 miles of dikes, thousands of water control structures, thousands of miles of fences, and a variety of vehicles and equipment. Industry standards suggest that annual funding of maintenance should be 2 to 4% of the replacement value of facilities. Over the past 10 years, Service facilities have received approximately 1% of the replacement value-- resulting in a growing list of deferred maintenance projects. Based on a Facility Condition Index (cost of deferred maintenance projects as a fraction the total capitalized value of the facility) the average refuge or hatchery facility must be characterized as being in poor condition. The Service uses a Maintenance Management System (MMS) to identify the extent of Servicewide maintenance and rehabilitation needs, establish regional and field station priorities for maintenance projects, and identify projects to be accomplished. The MMS plan (updated 1998) records a backlog of deferred maintenance projects totaling $829 million.

FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal:

The Service FY 1999 budget includes maintenance funding of $51 million, an increase of $8.4 million over the FY 1998 level. The FY 1999 budget also provides funding for construction rehabilitation of $37.8 million. FY 1999 will also be the first year of implementation of the Refuge Roads program under the Transportation Efficience Act for the 21st Century. This will provide $20 million for repair of public roads and associated infrastructure on refuges.
 

 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Habitat Conservation: Network of Lands & Waters 
 
Long-term Goal: Habitat Conservation Off Service Lands 
2.3 By 2003, improve fish and wildlife populations focusing on trust resources, threatened and endangered species, and species of special concern by enhancing and/or restoring or creating 250,000 acres of wetlands habitat, restoring 395,000 acres of upland habitats, and enhancing and/or restoring 2,500 riparian or stream miles of habitat off-Service lands through partnerships and other identified conservation strategies. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
2.3.1 By September 30, 1999, improve fish and wildlife populations focusing on trust resources, threatened and endangered species, and species of special concern by enhancing and/or restoring or creating 47,400 acres of wetlands habitat, enhancing and/or restoring 78,140 acres of upland habitats, and enhancing and/or restoring 676 riparian or stream miles of habitat off-Service lands through partnerships and other identified conservation strategies. 
Performance Measures 

[data reported on annual basis]

FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. # acres of wetlands habitat enhanced/ restored/created.  58,300 45,800   49,900 47,400
2. # acres of wetlands habitat protected through the North American Wetlands 17,004 10,229   5,102 5,102
3. # acres of upland habitat enhanced/restored.  109,290 68,340   78,640 78,140
4. # acres of upland habitats protected through the North American Wetlands Conservation Fund  52,054 31,313   15,619 15,619 
5. # miles riparian or stream habitat enhanced/restored.  646 573   581 676
6.# acres of riparian habitat protected through the North American Wetlands Conservation Fund. 57 34   17 17
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal:

Goal Objective:

The primary objective of this annual goal is to enhance and/or restore various important habitats off-Service lands to improve fish and wildlife populations. The focus will be on wetland, upland, and riparian habitats that benefit those trust resources for which the Service has primary responsibility, including threatened and endangered species, migratory birds, anadromous fish, and certain marine mammals.

Resource Condition:

Habitat is fundamental for self-sustaining populations of fish, wildlife, and plants as well as for functional ecosystems. The health of fish and wildlife and plants is greatly affected by the quantity and quality of their habitat. Over 26 % of forests in the United States, 50% of wetlands and 95% of native prairies are lost. Declines of wildlife populations have paralleled declines in both the quality and quantity of habitats -- surveys indicated that 56% of neotropical migratory bird species and 57% of waterfowl species are in decline. Population declines have resulted from a variety of factors including -- habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentation and competition from non-native species.

The Nation has lost approximately 100 million acres of wetlands since colonial times and wetland losses continue today. In addition, many of the wetlands still present on the landscape do not function at their full potential due to activities on the surrounding lands, including agricultural and urban development. Upland habitats have been lost or severely degraded through a variety of land use practices. Some portions of the Nation, such as the intensively farmed Plains states, have less than 1% of their original native upland vegetation. Riparian areas also continue to be converted to other land uses, or degraded by surrounding agricultural and urban activities. With over 70% per cent of the Nation's lands in non-Federal ownership, most of the opportunities for enhancing and restoring these habitats lie with the private landowner.

1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal:

This goal will be achieved by: (1) continuing to utilize voluntary, non-regulatory Service programs such as the Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program and the Coastal Program which emphasize voluntary habitat enhancement and restoration on private lands; (2) continuing to develop partnerships with other agencies - such as the U. S. Department of Agriculture - and organizations - such as the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation - to leverage funding for habitat restoration; and (3) actively providing technical assistance to individuals, agencies, and organizations involved in natural resource conservation.

For FY 1999, the Service is committed to the restoration, enhancement, or creation of 47,400 acres of wetland, restoration of nearly 78,140 acres of uplands, and enhancement/restoration of 676 riparian or stream miles. Service programs directly involved with habitat conservation efforts off Service lands include the Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program, Coastal Program, North American Waterfowl Management Plan, National Wetlands Conservation Act Grants Program, and the National Wildlife Refuge System.

The Service will direct additional resources of $7.1 million to voluntary agreements with private landowners administered through the Partners for Fish and Wildlife program. The Coastal program will continue to work with state, Federal, and private partners to restore and protect sensitive coastal habitats. The North American Wetlands Conservation Fund and the National Wildlife Refuge System will continue to direct funds toward restoration of migratory bird habitat. Further, the Service will focus on restoring habitat and passage for native fish by removing dams and smaller obstructions currently found in our nation's waterways.

Benefits Realized from Goal Achievement:

 
II. 1 Description of GPRA Program Activity -- Public Use and Enjoyment

American's understanding of how their well-being is intricately interwoven with the ecosystems they share with fish and wildlife and plants has direct impact on the conservation of natural resources. The interdependence of the Service, its partners and the American public with fish and wildlife and their habitats is the foundation of this GPRA Program Activity (mission goal) and the guiding factor in the development the long-term and annual performance goals. The intent of this GPRA Program Activity is to inform and provide opportunities to the public to experience fish and wildlife resources in their natural settings.

For the long-term, the Service will focus on increasing interpretive, educational, and wildlife dependent recreational visits to National Wildlife Refuges and National Fish Hatcheries; affording volunteers greater opportunities to participate in conservation efforts at Service facilities; assuring that recreational fisheries mitigation requirements are fulfilled and finally -- to insure that all federal state grant monies are used in compliance with enabling legislation.

II.2 Proposed Legislation:

Performance goals and accomplishment of those goals are not contingent on enactment of legislation during the fiscal year covered by the Annual Performance Plan.
 

 
II.3 EXHIBIT A
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Public Use and Enjoyment
 
Long-term Goal: Greater Public Use On Service Lands 
3.1 By 2003, interpretive, educational, and recreational visits to National Wildlife Refuges and National Fish Hatcheries have increased by 15% from the 1997 level. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
3.1.1 By September 30, 1999, interpretive, educational and recreational visits to National Wildlife Refuges and National Fish Hatcheries increased by 2% over the previous year. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan  Actual
1. % increase in interpretive, educational, and recreational visits. 33,206,405 6% 
35,144,365
6% 
35,341,846
+2% 
above '98 plan
+2%  
36,029,662
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal:

Goal Objective:

The National Wildlife Refuge System and National Fish Hatchery System offer the public the opportunity to gain direct experience with the natural world and wildlife management concerns. Visitors to refuges and hatcheries represent a broad range of constituents including hunter, anglers, wildlife and plant observers, and photographers. The intentions of this goal are to increase public participation and recreational opportunities on Service lands.

Current Program:

Over 30 million people visit National Wildlife Refuges annually. Refuges are places where visitors can observe, learn about, and enjoy plants and animals in natural surroundings. Recently, new legislation, the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act, directed expanded opportunity for six primary public uses for refuges: wildlife photography, fishing, hunting, wildlife observation, environmental education, and interpretation. Refuges offer visitor centers, auto tour routes, wildlife observation facilities, nature trails, interpretive tours, outdoor classrooms, and teach workshops. Along with on and off site education programs, these activities help build an understanding and appreciation for wildlife and habitat, and the role management plays in the stewardship of American's resources. More than 50% of refuges offer recreational hunting and fishing. Approximately 90% of refuge visitor participate in wildlife-dependent recreational and educational activities. 

FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal

The Service will achieve the FY 1999 performance of increased visits to refuges and hatcheries through increased outreach with local communities, school groups, and associations. Refuges and will devote an additional $3.4 million in funding to achieve the targeted performance.
 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Public Use and Enjoyment 
 
Long-term Goal: Opportunities for Participating in Conservation On Service Lands 
3.2 By 2003, volunteer participation hours in Service programs increased by 50% and refuges and hatcheries have 91 new friends groups from the 1997 levels. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
3.2.1 By September 30, 1999, volunteer participation hours in Service programs increased by 26% and refuges and hatcheries have 66 new friends groups from 1997 levels. 
Performance Measures FY 1997 
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. % increase in volunteer participation hours from 1997. 1,335,738 
---
1,536,098 
15%
1,396,000 1,689,707 
26%
1,689,707 
26%
2. # new friends groups.  63 94 95 104 129
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objective and Current Performance:

Volunteers are recruited and trained to assist in a variety of refuge activities including habitat management, education, public use, and research. These hands-on experiences provide tremendous benefits to refuges while increasing public understanding and appreciation of wildlife resources and management of wildlife resources. The volunteer program promotes partnerships with state and local government, individuals, and private groups. From its inception in 1982 with 4,251 volunteers, the program grew to 28,000 in FY 1997, an increase of over 500%. Not only did volunteers increase dramatically since 1982, but hours of service grew over 900% from 128,440 hours to 1.3 million hours in FY 1997.
As part of this effort, the Service enjoys partnerships with 95 citizen support groups referred to as "cooperating associations" or "friends groups" on 89 refuges. These nonprofit organizations supplement the Service's interpretation, education, biological, and public service programs. Funds to support these activities are often raised through bookstores in refuge visitor centers managed by the cooperating associations.

FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal

For FY 1999, the Service is committed to providing opportunities to volunteers and increasing friends groups. The Service will encourage these activities at National Wildlife Refuges and National Fish Hatcheries. The Service will maintain the FY 1998 level of support for this goal. Increases in performance will be obtained as a result of continuing positive experiences of volunteers at refuges and hatcheries. In addition, enactment of the National Wildlife Refuge System Volunteer and Community Partnership Enhancement Act of 1988, (P.L. 105-242, 10/15/98), will clarify and enhance authorities for working with volunteers and nonprofit support groups.
 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Public Use and Enjoyment 
 
Long-term Goal: Greater Public Use Off Service Lands 
3.3 Through 2003, 100% of all Federal Aid state grant monies are used consistent with the enabling legislation. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
3.3.1 By September 30, 1999, 86% of all Federal Aid state grant monies are used consistent with the enabling legislation. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 199 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. # states and territories eligible to participate in the Federal Grant Program. 56 56   56 56
2. % states found in compliance after audit resolution.  38% 
[21 states]
63% 
[35 states] 
63% 
[35states]
86% 
[48 states]
86% 
[48 states] 
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objective:

The Service administers seven state federal financial assistance programs. Each program has legislated requirements defining eligible activities. The Service assures grant proposals fully meet legislated requirements. After the Service awards funds to a state, the state has full responsibility and authority to implement funded actions. The Service maintains a federal fiduciary responsibility to ensure that Federal Aid grant funds are used in compliance with the enabling legislation and the purposes of project are accomplished.

FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal

Service actions in delivering this goal include reviewing all state grant applications to ensure that eligible activities are funded and the proposed projects are substantial in character and design. Periodic field reviews are conducted in concert with state agencies to ensure funded projects are implemented in accordance with applicable statutes. Performance reports are review to ensure that grant funds are used for project purposes and that purposes are accomplished.
 
GPRA PROGRAM ACTIVITY  
Public Use and Enjoyment 
 
Long-term Goal: Greater Opportunities for Participating in Recreational Fishing 
3.4 Through 2003, 100% of mitigation fish hatchery production requirements are satisfied related to federal water development projects. 
 
FY 1999 Annual Performance Goal: 
3.4.1 By September 30, 1999, 95% of mitigation hatchery production requirements are satisfied relating to federal water development projects. 
Performance Measures FY 1997  
Actual 
FY 1998
FY 1999 
Plan to Congress
FY 1999 
Enacted
Plan 
Actual 
1. % mitigation hatchery production requirements that are satisfied.  85% 87%   100% 95% 
Workload and Other Performance Statistics 
% Unmet mitigation based on prescribed mitigation.
 
Operational Processes, Technology, Financial and Human Resources Necessary to Achieve Each Performance Goal within the GPRA Program Activity:

Goal Objective:

Ninety five percent of mitigation production requirements are satisfied related to federal water development projects.

FY 1999 Performance - Achieving the Goal

The Service provides hatchery fish for recreational fisheries to compensate for the loss of aquatic resources caused by Federal water development projects such as hydro power dams. Many of these mitigation programs are required by law. Others were negotiated during project development and are viewed by stakeholders as mandated mitigation actions. Presently, the Service meets 87% of its mitigation responsibilities. During the next two years, the Service, working with partners, will establish a complete list of its mitigation responsibilities. A total of 36 National Fish Hatcheries are operated in whole, or part, to compensate for impacts caused by water projects. These mitigation programs provide a valuable contribution to an ecologically diverse network of the Nation's waterways. Fish Heath Centers and Fish technology Centers contribute to mitigation efforts, and provide land bases from which fishery partners perform health and genetics work with both hatchery and wild fish. National Fish Hatcheries will take advantage of every opportunity to increase the public's interaction with the fish and wildlife resources under their control. Accomplishment of this goal will lead to enhanced recreational fishing opportunities for the public, as required by Executive Order 12962. The FY 1999 performance targets assume an increase of $500,000 for hatchery management.
 


For Further Information, Contact Al Zara at: al_zara@fws.gov

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