BLM seeks public comment on proposed Santa Fe County shooting ranges
TAOS, N.M. – The Bureau of Land Management today began a 30-day public comment period on its environmental assessment considering the development of two recreational shooting ranges on public lands in Santa Fe County, as well as efforts to clean up nearby dispersed shooting locations. The comment period ends Oct. 20, 2023.
BLM is working with Santa Fe County, the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish, Santa Fe National Forest, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and San Felipe Pueblo on the proposal to develop a shooting range along Old Buckman Road northwest of Santa Fe and another in the Camel Tracks area north of La Cienega, while applying a no shooting buffer zone in a one-mile radius along certain existing roads. The proposal would also consider the remediation of dispersed shooting locations in these areas.
“The environmental assessment evaluates the impacts of developing recreational shooting ranges on public lands to improve public safety on private lands and public roads and trails,” said BLM Taos Field Manager Pamela Mathis. “We’re working closely with our partners to evaluate options for resolving potential conflicts and provide for the enjoyment of public lands by all users, including those seeking safe opportunities for target shooting.”
On Aug. 25, 2022, BLM published a notice in the Federal Register announcing its intent to amend the 2012 Taos Resource Management Plan and apply the one-mile road buffer that will close certain public lands to recreational shooting. The notice also initiated a 60-day public scoping period during which the public provided substantial input on issues and options addressed in the environmental assessment.
Comments can be submitted through the “Participate Now” function on the BLM National NEPA Register (preferred) or mailed to Bureau of Land Management, Attn: Brad Higdon, 1024 Paseo del Pueblo Sur, Taos, NM 87571.
For more information on the NEPA process, contact Project Manager Brad Higdon at the Taos Field Office at 575-751-4725 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.