The Victorian Catchment Management Framework (CMF) was established under the Catchment and Land Protection Act (1994) with the primary institutions being the Victorian Catchment Management Council (VCMC) and the ten Catchment Management Authorities (CMAs). Their major partners are the Department of Sustainability and Environment and the Department of Primary Industries. However, many other institutions and groups contribute to catchment health. These include local governments, water authorities, educational and research institutions, agricultural and industry organisations, Indigenous communities, Landcare, Waterwatch and other community groups and individual people who care about natural resources and their management. The CMF is a complex of entities, overlain by the processes and activities which keep the framework ticking: strategic planning, investment, monitoring reporting and evaluation, a range of partnerships and other relationships.
While the VCMC has a unique and positive relationship with Catchment Management Authorities (CMAs), it is not responsible for the operation of CMAs, nor does it oversee their work. However, the Council must be receptive to issues which emerge from the regions in developing a statewide position and giving good advice to Ministers in this process.