In order to assure the biological health and success of lands conserved as open space throughout the region, land management and biological monitoring is required. Managing and monitoring natural habitats and sensitive species reduces the likelihood that the system will degrade and prevents the need for state or federal listing of new species as threatened or endangered. Over 30 land managers work in the region to promote the regional habitat preserve system
, which is being created through implementation of multiple species habitat conservation plans and TransNet
Environment Mitigation Program land acquisitions.
SANDAG assists these efforts through coordination, collaboration and development of best management practices. In 2008, the SANDAG Board of Directors, through the TransNet EMP, set aside $40 million for the regional management and monitoring of natural habitats and sensitive plant and animal species over a ten year period.
The San Diego Management and Monitoring Program (SDMMP) was established to provide a coordinated, scientific approach to management and biological monitoring of conserved lands in San Diego County. As of May 2015, SANDAG has expended more than $21 million to manage and monitor the regional habitat preserve system. This is accomplished through a competitive land management grant program, funding of regional biological monitoring efforts, and directly assisting land managers with the necessary tools and resources to aid in their efforts.