Issues in monitoring the socio-economic effects of the Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board grant program
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This report examines some of the issues involved in setting up a system for monitoring the socio-economic effects of Oregon Watershed Enhancement Board (O-WEB) grants on an on-going basis. We conducted telephone interviews with 20 individuals from watershed councils, Soil and Water Conservation Districts and state agencies, to learn their attitudes toward monitoring the socio-economic impacts of their projects as well as to gain an understanding of any potential barriers to monitoring. The majority of respondents recognize the socio-economic impact of watershed enhancement projects and are willing to implement a clearly defined and simple monitoring system to measure these impacts. However, many stated the need for a clear definition of “local,” both geographically and in terms of business ownership. This is a complex issue that needs to be fully explored before implementing any system. In addition, there was some reluctance on the part of some respondents to monitor these impacts because of the heavy administrative burden. A couple of respondents thought that evaluative questions in the final report could be as effective as tracking individual expenditures.