Colorado now owns Fishers Peak, but funds to build the newest state park are in coronavirus limbo | VailDaily.com
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Colorado now owns Fishers Peak, but funds to build the newest state park are in coronavirus limbo

Jason Blevins, The Colorado Sun
Carlos Fernandez, the Colorado director of The Nature Conservancy, joined Jim Petterson, the Colorado director of the Trust for Public Land, in a Broomfield park on April 1 to sign over ownership of the 19,200-acre Fishers Peak property to the state, establishing Colorado's 42nd state park. (Provided by The Nature Conservancy.)

The deal went down on a picnic table in Broomfield on April 1.  

“The quietest acquisition of a $25 million property no one ever heard of,” GOCO boss Chris Castilian said. 

With a notary public standing 6 feet away, a flurry of signatures transferred southern Colorado’s 30 square-mile Fishers Peak to the state of Colorado. The undeveloped, wildlife-rich parcel is set to become Colorado’s 42nd state park.

But while the acquisition is complete — the deal was formally announced Thursday — funding for the development of the park remains in limbo as lawmakers slash more than $3 billion from the state budget in the midst of the pandemic. 

In early 2019, The Nature Conservancy and the Trust for Public Land spent $25.4 million on the 19,200-acre property that abuts downtown Trinidad. The conservation groups enlisted Great Outdoors Colorado to direct $7.5 million from its open space protection initiative and Colorado Parks and Wildlife dug up $7.52 million from its habitat stamp funds. GOCO came up with another $9.75 million from its allocation to state parks, and Trinidad and private fundraising made up the rest to pay back the conservation groups. 

Read more via The Colorado Sun.


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