PHOENIX – RealEstateRama – The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has published a decision record approving the noncompetitive sale of two public land parcels totaling just over 3,380 acres to the Gila River Indian Community (Community). The Community, composed of members of the Pima Tribe and the Maricopa Tribe, has historical ties to these lands and the parcels include cultural resources and archaeological sites that are of considerable significance to tribal members.
The action supports Public Law 115-350, the Gila River Indian Community Federal Rights-of-Way, Easements and Boundary Clarification Act. The law directs the Department of the Interior, acting through the BLM, to sell these lands, known as the Lower Sonoran Lands, to benefit the Gila River Indian Community and treat them as part of the community’s reservation.
On October 7, 2019, the BLM published the environmental assessment regarding the project. The decision record, environmental assessment and related documents are available on BLM’s ePlanning website at: https://go.usa.gov/xVFdc.
The lands were designated as suitable for disposal in the 2012 BLM Lower Sonoran Record of Decision and approved Resource Management Plan, because it is uneconomical for the BLM to manage them as public lands and they are not needed for any federal purpose. The sale of these lands are limited to federal, state, local and tribal governments.
Federal law requires the lands be sold at fair market value, which appraised for $9,620,000 by the Department of the Interior’s Appraisal and Valuation Services Office.
One parcel, 3,180.35 acres, adjoins the Community’s reservation on its northwestern border. The other parcel, 200.34 acres, is on the southern border of the reservation in Pinal County.
The BLM manages more than 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. In fiscal year 2018, the diverse activities authorized on BLM-managed lands generated $105 billion in economic output across the country. This economic activity supported 471,000 jobs and contributed substantial revenue to the U.S. Treasury and state governments, mostly through royalties on minerals.