Bureau of Land Management releases Final Environmental Assessment for Proposed Luis Lopez Cemetery Expansion Non-Competitive Direct Sale

SOCORRO, N.M. - The Bureau of Land Management today released its final environmental analysis of the Luis Lopez Cemetery Expansion Non-Competitive Direct Sale Resource Management Plan Amendment and subsequent Non-Competitive Direct Sale of a 2.72-acre parcel of public land. The parcel is located in the unincorporated town of Luis Lopez, 5 miles south of Socorro, N.M. The San Jose Catholic Cemetery is surrounded on three sides by the parcel.  Given the location, the ownership of the surrounding lands, and the public need to expand the existing cemetery, the BLM has determined that the parcel will be offered non-competitively to the Roman Catholic Church of the Archdiocese of Santa Fe San Miguel Parish, at not less than the appraised market value. Today’s announcement commences a 30-day protest period that will end on May 25, 2020.

The Final EA/RMP Amendment includes land use planning actions.  A person who meets the conditions outlined in 43 CFR 1610.5-2 and wishes to file a protest to the RMP Amendment specifically, must do so within 30 days of the date that this news release is published. Instructions for filing a protest with the Director of the BLM regarding the Final EA/RMP amendment may be found online at https://www.blm.gov/filing-a-plan-protest and at 43 CFR 1610.5-2.

Protests will be accepted from any person who participated in the planning process and has an interest which is or may be adversely affected by the approval of the RMP Amendment. A protest may raise only those issues which were submitted for the record during the planning process. The protest shall be in writing and shall be filed with the BLM Director. 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.

You may submit protests electronically through the BLM ePlanning project website at https://go.usa.gov/xdVGX.

Protests submitted electronically by any means other than the ePlanning project website protest section will be invalid unless a protest is also submitted in hard copy.  Protests submitted by FAX will also be invalid unless also submitted either through ePlanning project website protest section or in hard copy.  Alternately, written protests can be mailed to one of the following addresses:

  • Regular mail:  Director (210), Attn: Protest Coordinator, P.O. Box 261117, Lakewood, CO 80226
  • Overnight delivery:  Director (210), Attn: Protest Coordinator, 2850 Youngfield Street, Lakewood, CO 80215

Before including your address, telephone number, email address, or other personally identifying information in your protest, be advised that your entire protest - including your personal identifying information - may be made publicly available at any time.  You may request that the BLM withhold your personal identifying information from public review, but we cannot guarantee we will be able to do so.

The BLM Director will render a written decision on each protest.  The decision will be mailed to the protesting party.  The decision of the BLM Director shall be the final decision of the Department of the Interior on each protest.  Responses to protest issues will be complied and formalized in a Director's Protest Resolution Report made available following issuance of the decisions. Upon resolution of all protests, the BLM will issue a decision record.  All project documents will be made available electronically on the BLM's ePlanning website at: https://go.usa.gov/xdVGX.  If a hard copy is needed, please contact BLM Realty Specialist Virginia Alguire at 575-838-1290. 

This year, we invite everyone to reimagine your public lands as we celebrate 75 years of the BLM’s stewardship and service to the American people. The BLM manages approximately 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The agency’s mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. 

Release Date


Bureau of Land Management


Cathy Garber