U.S. House passes RMNP “wedge” legislation | SkyHiNews.com

U.S. House passes RMNP “wedge” legislation

The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill Tuesday to incorporate a wedge of land located between Rocky Mountain National Park and Arapaho National Forest into the Arapaho National Forest.

The bill was approved by a vote of 381-30. It is the first Democratic bill from the House Natural Resources Committee to be approved by the full House this session.

The legislation was introduced by Rep. Jared Polis, D-Boulder, who represents Grand County and other portions of north central Colorado. The bill is officially titled "The Arapaho National Forest Boundary Adjustment Act of 2015." The legislation will incorporate 10 previously privately owned parcels of land into the Arapaho National Forest.

"Protecting the Wedge is critical to maintain the natural beauty and recreational value of Rocky Mountain National Park and the adjacent Arapaho National Forest for future generations," said Polis. "We're thrilled by its bipartisan support and swift passage."

Polis previously introduced the wedge legislation in 2014 but the bill died as the legislative session ended in December. The bill will now move into the U.S. Senate for consideration and debate.

The Arapaho National Forest Boundary Adjustment Act of 2015 is supported by the Grand County Board of County Commissioners, the Town of Grand Lake, the Headwaters Trail Alliance, Rocky Mountain Nature Conservancy and Conservation Colorado. The private landowners who own the parcels of land to be incorporated into Arapaho National Forest are also supportive of the legislation, according to Polis' office.

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