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U.S. Reps. Scott Tipton and Jared Polis, who both represent parts of Eagle County in Congress, have joined with Colorado Springs Republican Doug Lamborn to introduce several bipartisan bills aimed at cleaning up confusion and solving disputes over land ownership and water rights in around federal lands.
Polis, a Boulder Democrat, is reintroducing his Bolts Ditch Access and Use Act, which passed in the House last September but never made it to a vote in the Senate, despite a bipartisan companion bill floated by Colorado Sens. Cory Gardner and Michael Bennet.
If it passes, the bill would allow the town of Minturn to access Bolts Ditch in order use existing water rights to fill Bolts Lake. Right now that’s problematic because Bolts Ditch was accidentally included in the Holy Cross Wilderness Area back in 1980.
Here’s the full press release on the various bills sponsored by Polis, Tipton and Lamborn.
Polis, Tipton, Lamborn reintroduce bills to help Colorado communities, protect public lands, and settle land disputes
Washington, D.C. – Tuesday, Reps. Jared Polis (D-Colo.), Scott Tipton (R-Colo.), and Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) reintroduced several bills that strive to help Colorado communities, protect public lands, and settle longstanding land disputes. The four bills include:
“Whether it’s helping the town of Minturn access clean and affordable drinking water, or expanding access to our beautiful wilderness, these bills will improve livelihood of our communities and environment. I’m glad that both Democrats and Republicans were able to work together for Coloradans on these commonsense, nonpartisan solutions,” Polis said.
“I am proud to work alongside my Colorado colleagues to protect our public lands and facilitate bipartisan, non-controversial land conveyances. Together, we can work to preserve Colorado’s pristine areas and cultural treasures, while ensuring state and individual property and water rights are honored.” Tipton said.
“Each of these bills will improve our communities and benefit the people of Colorado. I am pleased to have worked alongside my House colleagues, Jared Polis and Scott Tipton, to introduce these commonsense bills to resolve various land disputes and improve access to our public lands. I hope to see these four bipartisan bills enacted into law as quickly as possible.” Congressman Doug Lamborn said.
Last Congress, all four bills passed the House of Representatives, but did not make it to the U.S. Senate for a vote. Both Colorado Sens. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.) and Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) introduced Senate companion legislation last Congress.