BUFFALO PASS ROAD TO BE TEMPORARILY CLOSED ON PARKS RANGER DISTRICT
Beginning August 20, the Parks Ranger District portion of the Buffalo Pass Road (Forest Road 60) will be temporarily closed to the public for removal of beetle-killed hazard trees. This is a popular route between North Park and the Yampa Valley that provides year-round recreation access.
Initially, while logging operations occur along isolated sections east of the junction with the Hidden Lakes Road (Forest Road 20), the closure will be intermittent with one-hour delays for the first few days. Once logging operations reach the junction with Forest Road 20, the road will be closed by gates at this junction as well as near the summit at the junction with Forest Road 310. The road is anticipated to be closed Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Contract work is expected to be completed by December 1.
“I recognize the importance of not shutting down this popular route all week and have decided to keep it open on weekends and holidays,” said Parks District Ranger Mike Wright. “While I do understand that this will still impact some hunters in the coming months, this project is needed to ensure long-term public safety.”
Around August 20, Forest Roads 625 and 627 are also expected to be closed at their junctions with the Teal Lake Road (Forest Road 615) for hazard tree removal. Forest Road 625 is located about 1 mile northwest from the junction of Forest Roads 60 and 615. Forest Road 627 is located about 1.5 miles north of the Teal Lake Campground.
Depending on when work is completed on Forest Road 60, the contractor may begin clearing hazard trees on Forest Road 615 until snow shuts down their operations. More information will be provided to the public once the next stage of operations is known.
For more information about the status of this project, contact the Parks Ranger District at 970-723-8204.
BLM’S COLORADO STATE OFFICE POSTS LIST OF PROPOSED PARCELS FOR NOVEMBER OIL AND GAS LEASE SALE
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Colorado State Office posted the list of parcels for the quarterly competitive oil and gas lease sale scheduled for 9 a.m., Nov. 8, 2012, at the State Office in Lakewood.
The BLM will offer 48 parcels totaling 21,088.45 acres for lease within the Royal Gorge Field Office. To see a map of the proposed parcels, visit: www.blm.gov/co/st/en/BLM_Programs/oilandgas/oil_and_gas_lease/2012/november_8__2012_lease.html.
The deadline for submitting protests is 4 p.m., Sept. 10, 2012. All protests must be received by the BLM Colorado State Office, located at 2850 Youngfield St., Lakewood, CO 80215.
Additional lease sale information can be obtained online at: www.blm.gov/co/st/en/BLM_Programs/oilandgas/leasing.html. Information is also available at one of the bureau’s field offices and the BLM Colorado State Office Public Room, 2850 Youngfield St., Lakewood, CO.
The BLM manages more land – more than 245 million acres – than any other Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The Bureau, with a budget of about $1 billion, also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s multiple-use mission is to sustain the health and productivity of the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations. The Bureau accomplishes this by managing such activities as outdoor recreation, livestock grazing, mineral development, and energy production, and by conserving natural, historical, cultural, and other resources on public lands.
COLORADO NRCS ANNOUNCES NEARLY $2 MILLION IN FINANCIAL AND TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE TO DROUGHT-STRICKEN LANDOWNERS AND PRODUCERS
USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) State Conservationist Phyllis Ann Philipps recently announced nearly $2 million in financial and technical assistance to get much-needed help to landowners and producers in Colorado who are facing extreme and exceptional drought conditions. With this limited funding, higher priority will be given to those who have been in the exceptional drought (D4) areas of the state the longest and will include additional criteria based on erodible soils and other sensitive areas. This will ensure that the funds provided will be applied to the most vulnerable areas of the state.
COLORADO RIVER DISTRICT ANNUAL WATER SEMINAR
TAKES PLACE SEPT. 13, IN GRAND JUNCTION
“Past, Present and Future” is the theme of the Colorado River District’s Annual Water Seminar set for 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 13, 2012, at the Two Rivers Convention Center in Grand Junction, Colo. The cost to attend is $25 and includes morning coffee, pastries and a lunch.
Anne Castle, Assistant Secretary for Water and Science, Department of the Interior, is the keynote speaker. Seminar topics start with the 75-year history of the Colorado River District and a new book on the organization by author George Sibley, “Water Wranglers.” Other topics to be covered during the day are the drought, the Bureau of Reclamation/7 States Colorado River Basin Study results and a look at the November elections. A full agenda, press release and registration form is attached.
After the seminar, starting at 4 p.m., the Colorado River District is holding an Ice Cream Social and Open House at the Two Rivers Convention Center to celebrate its 75th Anniversary.
RECREATIONAL POT LEGALIZATION MEASURE POISED FOR FAILURE
A new poll released this week by Public Policy Polling shows that a proposed amendment to the Colorado Constitution that would legalize marijuana for recreational use is headed for failure. Unlike an earlier Rasmussen poll, PPP tested the actual ballot language and found only 47% of Colorado voters support Amendment 64.
“Not only does the poll show that Amendment 64 is in serious trouble, it showed a 6 point gender gap,” said Roger Sherman, campaign director for Smart Colorado/No on 64. “Colorado women determine the outcome of elections here, and they clearly know that legalizing pot for recreational use is bad for their families, their kids and the state.”
Ballot measures usually require a much higher level of support at this point in an election cycle because the default position for most voters is no, especially when it comes to amending the Colorado Constitution. In October 2008, a Mason-Dixon poll found Amendment 59, a school funding proposal, at 41% approval. It failed 55%-45%. An October 2010 poll by SurveyUSA for the Denver Post and 9-News revealed that 20% of polled voters supported the “personhood” Amendment 62, while 56% were opposed and 25% were undecided. Amendment 62 failed 70%-30%. Another 2010 ballot measure, Amendment 63, an attempt to undercut the Affordable Care Act, also failed 53%-47%.
“Amendment 64 would make Colorado one of the first states to fully legalize marijuana for recreational use,” said Sherman. “Not only does that directly conflict with federal law, growing and selling more pot increases the risk to our kids and increases impaired driving. Colorado voters are already saying no and that number will only increase as we get closer to election day.”