Upper Santa Ana Wash Land Management and Habitat Conservation Plan (Wash Plan)

Article Index

New Wash Plan Wash Plan Logo

From its beginnings, the Wash Planning efforts sought to better manage habitat, water conservation, mining, transportation, trails, and other land uses in the Santa Ana River Wash.  In 2010, the Wash Plan Task Force stopped meeting due to slowness in processing the environmental documents and warning flags raised by the Regulatory Community.  A review and analysis of the Wash Plan was undertaken to determine if it should be abandoned, realigned, or continue on its existing path and was completed in 2011.  Based on work by staff, some assistance from consultants, and a lot of meetings and work with US Fish and Wildlife, a revised Plan B of the Wash Plan was devised to allow the Wash Plan to progress.

Several changes were made to the Project Summary and a revision to the Task Force Agreement and budget was proposed and approved by the Task Force and ratified by all agencies as of November 19, 2013.

A project plan was proposed to the Board of Directors Summary and approved by the Wash Plan Task Force. It included a 24 Month Schedule for the HCP plan that was established and initiated on November 7, 2013 for a November 30, 2015 completion.

Countdown since Wash Plan Implementation

Task Force Members

  • City of Highland
  • City of Redlands
  • Redlands Municipal Utilities and Engineering Department
  • East Valley Water District
  • San Bernardino County Flood Control District
  • San Bernardino County Planning/Parks
  • Robertson's Ready Mix
  • San Bernardino Valley Municipal Water District
  • San Bernardino Valley Water Conservation District

Participating Stakeholders 

  • Bureau of Land Management
  • US Fish and Wildlife Service
  • California Department of Fish and Game
  • Highland Community News
  • Inland Valley Development Agency
  • Endangered Habitats League


On March 3, 2015 our federal partners issued a notice in the Federal Register.  Here is a excerpt from the notice: "We, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) and Bureau of Land Management (BLM), intend to prepare a Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) of 1969, as amended, for the proposed Upper Santa Ana River Wash Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP), and a related land exchange. The SDEIS will be a joint Environmental Impact Statement/Environmental Impact Report (EIS/EIR), for which the Service, the BLM, and the San Bernardino Valley Water Conservation District (District) intend to gather information necessary for preparation. The proposed HCP has been drafted to meet the requirements of the Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA) of 1973, as amended, and the State of California's Endangered Species Act and Natural Communities Conservation Planning Act. The BLM, in compliance with the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, as amended, will consider this NEPA process and the resulting HCP documents in its analysis toward possible amendment of the BLM South Coast Resource Management Plan (SCRMP) to support the land exchange."  Public meetings were held on March 18 at the SBVWCD District Offices at 2:00 PM and 6:30 PM 

Current Status and files

Progress has been slow but steady as multiple meetings have been held to come to a consensus on the Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP), Environmental Impact Report and Statement (EIR/EIS), and an Implementing Agreement (IA) that includes a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Task Force and participating stakeholders. The official draft of the HCP was approved in May 2015 and has since been reviewed and edited multiple times in order to resolve any lingering problems. The implementation of the Wash Plan began on December 1, 2015. Two bills – H.R. 4024 and S. 3080 - have been introduced into the House of Representatives and the Senate that will allow for the land transfer needed for the successful implementation of the HCP. Both bills are currently being looked over in committees. The HCP and supporting environmental documents will be ready for Federal Register publication by mid-September 2016.


Files related to the current Wash Plan can be found below in the Document Manager.

Wash Plan

Directory of Wash Plan Files

Historical Information from the 2008 Wash Plan EIR is on the following Page click to read more