Little Colorado RC&D
Authorized in 1971, the RC&D is part of a nationwide program of RC&Dís established by Congress through
the Food and Agriculture Act of 1962. The program was intended to help rural people help themselves by
assisting them with tools and technical support to stabilize and grow their communities, while
protecting and developing natural resources. RC&D Councils provide local direction and planning, and
coordinate the implementation of specific projects in their service territories. RC&Dís are multi-county,
providing a network of technical, organizational and financial support for coordinating across
political and jurisdictional boundaries, as well as across agencies, not-for-profit organizations and
The Holbrook Basin Horizons: Guide to Potash is a project of the
Little Colorado River Plateau Resource Conservation and Development Area, Inc.
The RC&Dís mission is to provide leadership, outreach and education in natural resources,
conservation and economic development for communities and other stakeholders in the RC&Dís
service territory, including the Hopi Reservation and non-reservation parts of southern Navajo
and Apache counties. A 9,200 square mile area, the territory includes most of the Little Colorado
River watershed, and nearly all of the Holbrook Basin.
RC&D Board Meeting
Hopi Cultural Center
The Little Colorado RC&D is supported by a broad cross-section of units of government and organizations
in the area. Active sponsors include: the Apache and Navajo County Boards of Supervisors; the Hopi Tribal
Council; the towns of Eager, Holbrook, Pinetop-Lakeside, Show Low, Snowflake, St. Johns, Springerville,
Taylor and Winslow; the Apache and Navajo Natural Resource Conservation Districts; the Northern Arizona
Council of Governments; Navopache Electric; Northland Pioneer College; the National Bank of Arizona and
Salt River Project.
Sponsors nominate representatives to the RC&D Council, which in turn elects a Board of Directors and
identifies projects. A project begins when a community-based action team identifies a local issue and
seeks to address it. The Little Colorado RC&D has projects focusing on watershed health; forestry;
management of noxious and invasive weeds; conservation and community development.
Watershed health projects are coordinated by the Little Colorado River Watershed Coordinating
Council. Projects are directed toward decreasing erosion, sediment, turbidity and flood control; and
development of watershed management plans and water monitoring networks.
Forest-related projects address forest health, wildfire hazard mitigation, utilization of
small-diameter timber and development of related businesses.
Weed management efforts are coordinated as part of a Weed Management Area. Efforts are focused
in several areas: education; development of inventories, control and eradication; demonstration
projects; and management of the weed program for the Weed Management Area. Because of the large number
of lakes in the area, these efforts address aquatic weeds as well as range management.
The community development focus area spans a wide range of topics intended to improve community
viability, resilience and sustainability, and to build community capacity and economic growth. The
Little Colorado RC&Dís efforts include: promoting tourism; hosting grant-writing workshops; promoting
the development of resource-based industries; and protecting rural industries from natural resource
The RC&D administers grants from the US Forest Service; Eastern Arizona Counties Rural Advisory
Council; Arizona State Forestry Division; Arizona Department of Environmental Quality; Natural
Resources Conservation Service; the Hopi Tribe and the Forest Products Laboratory. It supports through
grants the Springerville Community Garden, the Hopi Agricultural Program and the community-based
small-diameter timber projects of the Southwest Sustainable Forests Partnership. The RC&D participates
in the Northern Arizona Wood Products Association, Four Forests Restoration Initiative (4FRI), REAL
Arizona Corridor, Arizona Alliance for Non-Profits, Local First Arizona, Arizona Association for
Economic Development, The Nature Conservancy, and the National Parks Conservation Association.
The Little Colorado RC&D is a member of the Arizona RC&D Association, the Western RC&D Association and
the National Association of RC&D Councils. It is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit.