Management Plan: An Action Plan for the Nation - Leadership and
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Plan for the Nation - Leadership and Coordination
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Summary] | [Introduction] | [Survey of Federal Roles & Responsibilities]
[An Action Plan for the Nation]
| [Conclusion] | [Appendices]
Leadership | Prevention | Detection
| Control | Restoration
International | Research
| Info Management | Education
The Council is directed by the
Order to provide national leadership and oversight on invasive
species issues and to see that Federal agency activities are
coordinated, effective, partner with States, and provide for
public input and participation. The Council established permanent
staff positions, and the Departments of the Interior (Interior),
Agriculture (USDA), and Commerce (Commerce), appointed liaisons
from their Departments to assist the Council. Other agencies
with responsibilities for invasive species appointed technical
liaisons to the Council. These people represent an informal but
effective interdepartmental liaison group that works directly
with Council staff to complete activities assigned by the Council
and has been instrumental in assisting the Council. The group
also facilitates information flow among the Council members,
Council staff, and the other Federal agencies.
The Council will meet in plenary
session at least twice annually, and will convene meetings of
the Advisory Committee on a regular basis and no less than four
times before the first revision of this Plan in January 2003.
At least two of the Advisory Committee meetings will be held
in conjunction with Council meetings.
The Council staff plans to meet
at least every 3 months with the interdepartmental liaison group.
The primary purpose of these meetings will be to ensure that
the duties assigned to Federal agencies in the Order are being
carried out, including implementation of the actions recommended
in this Plan. The interdepartmental liaisons will inform the
Council of progress on recommendations, suggest new recommendations,
and facilitate the exchange of information among all involved.
The development of an Internet-based information sharing network,
as mandated by the Order, will greatly facilitate coordination
and information exchange, (see Section H; Information Management).
When appropriate, the Council
and its staff will draw on various existing organizations for
coordination and leadership. These include, among others, State,
tribal, and local government agencies, State invasive species
committees and councils, regional organizations such as regional
weed boards, the Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force (ANSTF),
Federal Interagency Committee on the Management of Noxious and
Exotic Weeds (FICMNEW), Committee on Environment and Natural
Resources (CENR), international bodies, and various non-government
The States play a key role in
the management of invasive species within their borders. Therefore,
this Plan reflects the need to build capacity and capability
at State and local levels to coordinate, detect, and respond
to invasive species. However, additional steps are needed to
ensure a unified, effective, and coordinated Federal response.
One critical step is the development of an oversight mechanism
for use by Federal agencies in complying with the Order and reporting
on implementation. An example of an oversight mechanism is the
policy adopted by the U.S. Coral Reef Task Force, which was established
by E.O. 13089. This policy can be reviewed at Coral
Reef Task Force.
In addition, the Departments of the Council shall submit a written
report on an annual basis summarizing their invasive species
activities during the previous year and including a description
of their actions to comply with the Executive Order on invasive
species, budget estimates, and progress in implementation of
- By April 2001, the Council will
establish a transparent oversight mechanism for use by Federal
agencies in complying with the Order and reporting on implementation.
The oversight mechanism will employ an interactive process that
engages public involvement.
- By July 2001, the Council will
ensure that a clearly defined process will be developed and procedures
will be in place to help resolve jurisdictional and other disputes
regarding invasive species issues. The goals will be to resolve
disputes at the most effective and least formal level possible,
in an unbiased manner, and to involve only those parties with
an interest in the dispute. The process will use unbiased third
party mediators if appropriate. When requested by a State, the
process may apply to disputes between Federal and State entities.
- By January 2002, the Council
will conduct an evaluation of current legal authorities relevant
to invasive species. The evaluation will include an analysis
of whether and how existing authorities may be better utilized.
If warranted, recommendations will be made for changes in legal
- Starting in October 2001, each
member Department of the Council shall submit an annual written
report summarizing their invasive species activities, including
a description of their actions to comply with the Order, budget
estimates, and steps in implementing the Plan. These reports
will be used in preparing the invasive species cross-cut budget
and will help the Council in drafting the biannual updates to
the year Management Plan.
- By January 2002, the Council
will prepare an analysis of barriers to coordinated and joint
actions among Federal agencies, including legal and policy barriers
and barriers relating to the transfer and pooling of funds for
invasive species projects. The analysis will include consideration
of a standard Memorandum of Understanding that would allow interagency
transfer of funding for invasive species actions identified in
- By July 2002, the Council will
identify at least two major invasive species issues, regulations,
or policies where coordination is inadequate and will take action
that fixes the problem.
- Beginning with Fiscal Year (FY)
2003, and each year thereafter, the Council will coordinate and
provide to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a proposed
cross-cut budget for Federal agency expenditures concerning invasive
species, and in particular will address implementation of the
actions recommended in this and future editions of the Plan.
The cross-cut budget will take into account views of the Advisory
Committee, States, and the full range of stakeholders. In addition,
it will be used as a tool for planning and coordination, giving
emphasis to funding priorities to implement action items.
- By January 2003, and every 2
years thereafter, the Council will give a report on success in
achieving the goals and objectives of the current Plan, and issue
an updated Plan. These updates and reports will be prepared in
consultation with the Advisory Committee and through mechanisms
securing comment from stakeholders and the general public.
- By 2004, the Council will assess
the effectiveness of the Order, as required by section 5(c) of
the Order. The assessment will include an evaluation of whether
the President should expand, or propose legislation to expand,
the authorities of the Council to ensure that the requirements
of the Order and the Plan are carried out effectively and efficiently.
The assessment process will include the solicitation of comments
from program participants, including State partners and other
- By February 2001, the Council
will convene a working group of agency leads on international
agreements relevant to invasive species in order to facilitate
communication and the development of U.S. positions that have
adequate stakeholder input and are mutually supportive.
The Council is charged with facilitating
action at local, State, tribal, regional, and international levels.
It has reviewed opportunities for encouraging non-federal efforts
through discussions with the Advisory Committee, participation
in listening sessions, and interaction with the general public.
Many of the actions and goals
outlined will not succeed unless they are done in cooperation
and partnership with the State, tribal, and local governments,
given their critical role and extensive programs dealing with
invasive species. The essential and often leading role of State
and local efforts and the importance of coordinated Federal and
State action are mentioned throughout this Plan.
- By June 2001, Council
staff will prepare a 2-year work plan identifying specific initiatives
for presentation to the Council and will pursue projects in the
interim as feasible and appropriate. The Council will develop
and pursue joint projects in collaboration with the Advisory
Committee and, when appropriate, the Aquatic Nuisance Species
Task Force (ANSTF), the Federal Interagency Committee on the
Management of Noxious and Exotic Weeds (FICMNEW), and the Council
on Environment and Natural Resources (CENR). In preparing the
work plan, the Council staff will seek advice from, and coordinate
with, non-federal agencies and organizations, including the National
Governors Association, managers of State invasive species programs,
State plant boards, tribal governments, the National Association
of Counties, the National Plant Board, the U.S. Animal Health
Association, the National Association of Conservation Districts,
the North American Weed Management Association, the International
Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, land trusts, environmental
non-profit organizations, community organizations, regional compacts
such as the Great Lakes Panel on Aquatic Nuisance Species, the
Intermountain Noxious Weed Advisory Committee, and international
bodies, such as the Global Invasive Species Programme (GISP),
as well as other stakeholders.
Environmental Policy Act Guidance
Federal agency decisions to undertake
many Federal actions that affect or are affected by invasive
species are usually preceded by the need to comply with the National
Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Under NEPA, Federal agencies,
often in cooperation with State, local, and tribal governments,
must analyze the environmental, economic and social affects of
their proposed actions and alternatives to the proposed action.
Through greater familiarity with the issue and available literature,
such analyses can be utilized to identify more efficient and
effective means of addressing invasive species issues in the
course of undertaking numerous Federal actions.
- By August 2001, the
Council in cooperation with the President's Council on Environmental
Quality (CEQ), will prepare and issue guidance to Federal agencies
based on the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for prevention
and control of invasive species.
coordination in Action: TEAM Leafy Spurge
Since its introduction into the
United States, leafy spurge has doubled its acreage every 10
years (USDA Agricultural Research Service 1999). This formidable
terrestrial weed now infests at least 5 million acres in 29 States.
Costs to agricultural producers and taxpayers for production
losses, control expenses, and other economic impacts are estimated
at $144 million every year in North Dakota, South Dakota, Montana,
and Wyoming alone.
In 1999, USDA's Agriculture Research
Service (ARS) began The Ecological Area-wide Management (TEAM)
Leafy Spurge, a $4.5 million, 5-year area-wide pest management
demonstration project in the Little Missouri River drainage.
Partners include the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
(APHIS), Forest Service (FS), National Park Service (NPS), Bureau
of Land Management (BLM), U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), State
departments of agriculture and other State agencies, land grant
universities, county weed managers, and landowners.
TEAM Leafy Spurge's integrated
pest management strategy relies on biological control agents
and techniques such as combined sheep and cattle grazing. There
has been progress on several fronts. The effectiveness of one
biological control agent, the leafy spurge flea beetle, has been
demonstrated at numerous test sites. Successful establishment
of flea beetles has improved because TEAM Leafy Spurge members
are working directly with landowners on the proper methods for
release of the insect. Tours of the demonstration sites as part
of a comprehensive public education program have already begun,
and the response by farmers and ranchers has been overwhelming.
Research funded by TEAM Leafy Spurge in the United States and
abroad seeks improved understanding of how biological controls
work and is attempting to identify new leafy spurge parasites
and pathogens for testing.