U.S. DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIORBUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT
Land Use Plan Protest Process
 
Filing a Valid Protest
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Filing a Valid Protest

Pursuant to BLM’s planning regulations at 43 CFR 1610.5-2, any person who participated in the planning process for this PRMP and has an interest which is or may be adversely affected by the planning decisions may protest approval of the planning decisions within 30 days from the date the Environmental Protection Agency publishes the Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. Listed below are the protest regulations specifying the required elements for filing a valid protest. Interested parties should take care to document all relevant facts.  As much as possible, specific planning documents or available planning records (e.g. meeting minutes or summaries, correspondence, etc.) should be referenced or cited. To aid in ensuring the completeness of your protest, a protest Critical Item Checklist is also detailed below. 

E-mailed protests will not be accepted as valid protests unless the protesting party also provides the original letter by either regular or overnight mail postmarked by the close of the protest period.   Under these conditions, the BLM will consider the e-mailed protest as an advance copy and will afford it full consideration. If you wish to provide the BLM with such advance notification, please direct emailed protests to the attention of the BLM protest coordinator at protest@blm.gov.

All protests, including the follow-up letter (if e-mailing) must be in writing and mailed to the following address:

Regular Mail:                                                                         
Director (210)
Attention: Protest Coordinator, WO-210 
P.O. Box 71383  
Washington, D.C. 20024-1383

Overnight Mail (non-USPS delivery service):
Director (210)
Attention: Protest Coordinator, WO-210
20 M St SE, Room 2134LM
Washington, D.C. 20003 

Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your protest, be advised that your entire protest – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your protest to withhold from public review your personal identifying information, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

The BLM Director will make every attempt to promptly render a decision on each protest. The decision will be in writing and will be sent to the protesting party by certified mail, return receipt requested. The decision of the BLM Director shall be the final decision of the Department of the Interior.

Upon resolution of all land use plan protests, the BLM will issue an Approved RMP and Record of Decision (ROD). The Approved RMP and ROD will be mailed or made available electronically to all who participated in the planning process.

Unlike land use planning decisions, implementation decisions are not subject to protest under the BLM planning regulations, but are subject to an administrative review process, through appeals to the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA), Interior Board of Land Appeals (IBLA) pursuant to 43 CFR, Part 4 Subpart E. Implementation decisions generally constitute the BLM’s final approval allowing on-the ground actions to proceed. Where implementation decisions are made as part of the land use planning process, they are still subject to the appeals process or other administrative review as prescribed by specific resource program regulations. The approved RMP and ROD will therefore identify the implementation decisions made in the plan that may be appealed to the Office of Hearing and Appeals.  

Regulations for Filing a Valid Protest
[Code of Federal Regulations]
[Title 43, Volume 2]
[Revised as of October 1, 2002]
From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access
[CITE: 43CFR1610.5-2]
 
[Page 20]
TITLE 43--PUBLIC LANDS: INTERIOR
CHAPTER II--BUREAU OF LAND MANAGEMENT, DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
PART 1600--PLANNING, PROGRAMMING, BUDGETING--Table of Contents
Subpart 1610--Resource Management Planning
Sec. 1610.5-2--Protest procedures.

(a) Any person who participated in the planning process and has an interest which is or may be adversely affected by the approval or amendment of a resource management plan may protest such approval or amendment. A protest may raise only those issues which were submitted for the record during the planning process.

(1) The protest shall be in writing and shall be filed with the Director. The protest shall be filed within 30 days of the date the Environmental Protection Agency published the notice of receipt of the final environmental impact statement containing the plan or amendment in the Federal Register. For an amendment not requiring the preparation of an environmental impact statement, the protest shall be filed within 30 days of the publication of the notice of its effective date.

 (2) The protest shall contain:

(i) The name, mailing address, telephone number and interest of the person filing the protest;

(ii) A statement of the issue or issues being protested;

(iii) A statement of the part or parts of the plan or amendment being protested;

(iv) A copy of all documents addressing the issue or issues that were submitted during the planning process by the protesting party or an indication of the date the issue or issues were discussed for the record; and

(v) A concise statement explaining why the State Director's decision is believed to be wrong.

(3) The Director shall promptly render a decision on the protest.  The decision shall be in writing and shall set forth the reasons for the decision. The decision shall be sent to the protesting party by certified mail, return receipt requested.
(b) The decision of the Director shall be the final decision of the Department of the Interior.
Resource Management Plan Protest Critical Item Checklist
The following items must be included to constitute a valid protest whether using this optional format, or a narrative letter (refer to 43 CFR 1610.5-2).

Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your protest, be advised that your entire protest - including your personal identifying information--may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your protest to withhold from public review your personal identifying information, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so. All submissions from organizations and businesses, and from individuals identifying themselves as representatives or officials of organizations and businesses, will be available for public inspection in their entirety.

  • Name of Resource Management Plan (RMP) or Amendment (RMPA) being protested
  • Protester’s Name
  • Address
  • Phone Number
  • Your interest in filing this protest (how will you be adversely affected by the approval or amendment of this plan?)
  • Issue or issues being protested
  • Statement of the part or parts of the plan being protested (including Chapter, Section, Page, and/or Map)
  • Attach copies of all documents addressing the issue(s) that were submitted during the planning process by the protesting party, OR an indication of the date the issue(s) were discussed for the record (including dates)
  • A concise statement explaining why the State Director’s decisions is believed to be wrong.
To view or download an electronic version of the Critical Item Checklist, click here
 

 
Last updated: 12-03-2013