Letter: Pass the Core Act now
We are extremely thankful the CORE Act was considered in a recent Senate Energy and Natural Resources hearing; an incredibly positive step for the bill and for the special places in Colorado that the CORE Act will protect. By safeguarding 400,000 acres of public lands including 73,000 acres of new wilderness and 80,000 acres of recreation and conservation management areas, passage of the act would expand our world-acclaimed outdoor recreation attractions, boost local economies and pay tribute to our nation’s veterans in one fell swoop. The CORE Act has been passed by the House twice, and the hearing makes inclusion in the FY 2021 sure-to-be-passed National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) much more probable.
Safeguarded places include permanent protections for nearly 100,000 acres of wilderness, recreation and conservation areas in the White River National Forest along Colorado’s Continental Divide; the San Juan Mountains, Thompson Divide; Curecanti National Recreation Area; and Camp Hale, where the famed World War II 10th Mountain Division soldiers trained. These protections have been discussed and agreed upon for many years by a broad array of stakeholder groups including local governments, businesses, recreationists, sportsmen and conservationists.
There are many Colorado businesses like ours that rely on a healthy outdoor recreation and tourism economy and whose livelihoods are directly linked to protecting public lands as the CORE Act will. Economics aside, we believe that our wild and beautiful places must be protected and preserved, so future generations can enjoy them as we have.
We welcome Sen. Cory Gardner’s support for the CORE Act’s passage as a memorable term-ending conservation present to Coloradans. Most importantly, we thank Senator Michael Bennet, Congressman Joe Neguse, and Congresswoman Diana DeGette for introducing the CORE Act and for their relentless pursuit to make it a reality.
Patrick Webber, co-founder at Fourpoints Bar
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