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GIS is transforming watershed planning approaches within the State of North Carolina. The North Carolina Ecosystem Enhancement Program selected Cathey's Creek Watershed, within the Broad River Basin of North Carolina, for a detailed technical watershed assessment. The purpose of the assessment was to characterize the watershed, identify general problem areas related to ecological functions, determine how to address these problems, and develop a plan that includes solutions to the problems. The bulk of initial characterization was based on existing GIS data. Summarization of existing data and detailed spatial analysis was used to describe the condition of the watershed in terms of hydrologic, water quality, and habitat functions. Assessment of the watershed will support stakeholders in development of a Watershed Management Plan. A future Management Plan will aid in facilitating reestablishment of water quality, hydrology, and habitat functions; produce mitigation credits; and meet the community's priorities to formulate optimum projects.