Mesa County residents support CO Senate Bill 19-181

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March 7, 2019

The Honorable Senator Mike Foote

The Honorable Representative K.C. Becker

Colorado State Legislature

200 E. Colfax Ave. Denver, CO 8020

Re: Letter of support for Senate Bill 19-18

Dear Senator Foote and Representative Becker,

We are residents of Grand Junction and Mesa County, and we differ greatly from our elected officials who wrote you opposing SB19-181. 

We urge you to support  this bill to give Colorado residents additional health and safety protections from the hazards posed by oil and gas operations.

We believe our local elected officials are hyperventilating over this bill, and their fears are unreasonable. Passage of SB19-181 will not ban oil and gas development, but will just re-prioritize the mission of the Colorado Oil and Gas Commission to put Coloradans’ health and safety and environmental as safety top priority when considering oil and gas development.

This bill has been a long time in coming, and we're glad the state legislature is finally considering public health and safety when it comes to drilling activity.

Many western slope communities have been negatively impacted by the energy industry, and citizens in Mesa County are increasingly facing health and safety problems caused by the the incursion of oil and gas operations into our neighborhoods. Residents of areas like Battlement Mesa and Whitewater have endured noise, horrible odors, physical symptoms like nose bleeds, sore throats, and nausea. Some people own property that has been devalued by the proximity of oil and gas development, and oil and gas development has polluted streams in western Colorado that flow to the Colorado River.

SB19-181 will provide a better balance between profits and public safety and environmental preservation. It will enhance local control and give citizens more power to protect their health, welfare and safety and preserve their property value in the face of oil and gas development. Mesa County residents hope you will support SB19-181 and help us by passing this long-overdue legislation.

Thank you for the opportunity to comment.