FEEDBACK: Senate committee was wise to defeat anti-energy development bill

Author: Colorado Politics - February 1, 2018 - Updated: February 1, 2018


Colorado’s Senate State Affairs Committee rightly rejected Senate Bill 48, which would have allowed local elected officials to ban energy development and prevent minerals owners from accessing their private property. Sen. Matt Jones, who is also running for Boulder County Commissioner this year, tried to say this was simply about giving local elected officials zoning authority like they would any other issue.

Unfortunately, his pitch for the bill, which I testified against, was soon forgotten as a trove of Boulder County residents testified against all forms of energy extraction. The hearing included a who’s who of national environmental groups such as Food and Water Watch,350.org, Be the Change, Earthworks and others focused on their leave-it-in-the-ground ideology.

Sadly, the supporters of SB 48 were undeterred about the economic realities and the jobs supported by the oil and natural gas industry. Even Sen. Jones attempted to minimize the economic impact by saying many of the hundreds of thousands of jobs provided by this industry were gas station jobs. While actually wrong on the facts, Jones’ comments smack of elitism as if these jobs weren’t worthy of protection.

To be clear, the average home price in Jones’ district exceeds $1 million, which certainly limits the vast majority of Colorado’s employees. Luckily, those on the Senate State Affairs Committee stood up for the many Colorado families across the state who rely on this industry for a steady paycheck and affordable energy.

Nick Kliebenstein
Front Range Energy Alliance


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Colorado Politics

Colorado Politics

Colorado Politics, formerly The Colorado Statesman, is the state's premier political news publication, renowned for its award-winning journalism. The publication is also the oldest political news outlet in the state, in continuous publication since 1898. Colorado Politics covers the stories behind the stories in Colorado's state Capitol and across the Centennial State, focusing on politics, public policy and elections with in-depth reporting on the people behind the campaigns — from grassroots supporters to campaign managers and the candidates and issues themselves.