The Upper San Pedro Partnership was formed in 1998 as a consortium of federal, state and local agencies and organizations that were to assist in meeting the long-term water needs of the San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area and of the area residents. The member agencies and organizations either 1) own land within the Sierra Vista subwatershed; 2) control land or water within the subwatershed; 3) make policy regarding land or water in the subwatershed or 4) will provide significant technical or financial resources to assist the Partnership in accomplishing its purpose. The original purpose of the Partnership was to coordinate and collaborate in the identification, prioritization and implementation of comprehensive policies and projects that assist in meeting the water needs of the Sierra Vista subwatershed.

In November 2003, the United States Congress passed the Defense Authorization Act of 2004, Public Law 108-136. This legislation required the Secretary of the Interior, in consultation with the Secretaries of Defense and Agriculture, and in cooperation with the Upper San Pedro Partnership, to prepare an annual report to Congress that included the water use management and conservation measures that have been implemented and are needed to restore and maintain the sustainable yield of the regional aquifer by and after September 30, 2011. This report is commonly referred to as the ‘321 Report” and can be found on this website. The Upper San Pedro Partnership continues to work toward the “321” goal of restoring and maintaining the sustainable yield of the regional aquifer by and after September 30, 2011.

After the expiration of the 321 Reporting requirement in 2012, and through advancements made over its 20-year history, the Partnership’s understanding of how to track trends in the regional aquifer, riparian system, San Pedro River and nearby springs shifted to a spatial and temporal approach. In 2017, the focus of the Partnership shifted to the work of the Technical Committee in coordinating and cooperating in the identification, development and utilization of science and technical information to assist in meeting water needs in the Sierra Vista Subwatershed of the Upper San Pedro River Basin.