Letter: Colorado’s Public Lands sold to the highest bidder
Last week, at the first forum of the general election, GOP gubernatorial candidate, Walker Stapleton said that the federal government should not be making determinations regarding federal lands, but refused to say whether he would stand up to Trump if Trump attempted to take away Colorado’s public lands.
Colorado is home to four national parks, eight national monuments, 41 state parks and millions of acres of wilderness, and public lands managed by the National Forest Service and BLM.
Our fantastic public lands sustain a wealth of plants and wildlife. Our lands generate a world-class outdoor recreation industry, which provides 229,000 jobs and generates over $2 billion in revenue.
Winter Park is home to a great ski resort and pristine mountains and valleys which attract hundreds of visitors during the summer and winter months. Visitors come from near and far to hike, bike, ski and hunt on the lands, and to fish and raft on the raging rivers.
It takes years of research, coalition building and collaboration with broad stakeholder communities to draft a public lands legislation, and only the stroke of a pen by the President to gut the lands and sell the pieces to the highest bidder as exemplified by Bears Ears and Grand Staircase of the Escalante National Monuments.
Closer to home, the BLM is proposing to lease more that 18,000 acres on the eastern border of Great Sand Dunes National Park to oil and gas entities. Brown’s Canyon National Monument, which provides clean water, habitat for wildlife, biological diversity, outdoor recreational opportunities, and scenic beauty may be next on the chopping block.
Jared Polis, Democratic candidate for governor has spent nearly a decade protecting Colorado’s public lands.
The choice is clear. A vote for Jared is a vote for our Public Lands.
Rose Pray, Dillon
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