Welcome to the Lower Sonoran Field Office ePlanning site for the Lower Sonoran and Sonoran Desert National Monument Resource Management Plans (RMPs)! The Records of Decision (ROD) and Approved Resource Management Plans (ARMP) for both the Lower Sonoran Decision Area and Sonoran Desert National Monument were released to the public on September 14, 2012. While the Resource Management Plans were analyzed together in one Environmental Impact Statement, (both the Draft and Final Environmental Impact Statements are also on this web site) two seperate RODs and ARMPs have been created, one each for the Lower Sonoran Decision Area (BLM lands outside the Sonoran Desert National Monument) and the Sonoran Desert National Monument. Both are located here on this website.
The Lower Sonoran and Sonoran Desert National Monument Draft Resource Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement (DRMP/EIS) was released for public comment from August 26 to November 25, 2011. During this time, BLM received over 4,800 comment submissions by email, regular mail, at public meetings (written), and through this web site. Of those submissions, 256 were unique and 4,572 were form letters. From those comment submissions approximately 450 separate substantive comments were extracted. Substantive comments have been addressed and responded to in the Proposed RMP/Final EIS (PRMP/FEIS) and changes in the plan were made where necessary. Actual comment letters received are available for review at this link. The Proposed RMP/Final EIS was released for a 30-day protest period on June 15, 2012. Nine protests were received, all of which have been either denied or dismissed. This cleared the way for the Arizona State Director to approve the final plans by signing the Records of Decision.
These land use planning documents provide direction for approximately 1.4 million acres of BLM-administered public land in south-central Arizona managed by the Lower Sonoran Field Office. Of these lands, approximately 486,400 acres are within the Sonoran Desert National Monument (SDNM) established in 2001 by Presidential Proclamation for the protection and management of the area’s natural, geologic and cultural resources. The two approved RMPs and Records of Decision are the culmination of this planning effort.