The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has released a plan for the future management of nearly 1.4 million acres located southwest of Phoenix, Ariz., in parts of Maricopa, Pinal, Pima, Gila and Yuma counties. Of that total, more than 486,000 acres are within the Sonoran Desert National Monument (SDMN), which the BLM is proposing to close to target shooters. Presently, some 63 sites in the national monument are used by recreational shooters. The planning area outside of the SDNM will remain open to target shooting. The plan also addresses other issues of importance to shooters and hunters including the designation of roads and trails for motorized vehicles and areas that could be managed as wilderness.
NRA and Safari Club International have jointly filed comments to keep recreational shooting open in SDMN. Click here to view.
If you recreate in the SDNM, especially if you enjoy recreational shooting, getting involved in this planning process is of paramount importance. This is not the first time that the BLM has attempted to close an entire national monument to shooters, making no attempt to provide places for and access to shooting sites. One-half million acres closed to one segment of the recreating public is unacceptable.
The public comment period is open through Nov. 25. Comments can be faxed to 623-580-5580 or mailed to BLM, Phoenix District Office, ATTN: LS-SDNM RMP, 21605 North 7th Avenue, Phoenix, AZ 85027. The draft plan can be found at http://www.blm.gov/az/st/en/prog/planning/son_des.html.
If you wish to receive news about the planning process, you may e-mail BLM at email@example.com. For more information, you may call the BLM office at 623-580-5500, or leave a message on the Lower Sonoran Planning voice mail at 623-580-5526.
READ THE FULL NRA-ILA ANNOUNCEMENT HERE.