Campbell proposes $20 million for conservation projects
U.S. Sen. Ben Nighthorse Campbell, R-Colo., said he succeeded in including $20 million for Colorado conservation projects in the Senate version of the 2004 Interior Appropriations Bill.The bill passed out of committee last week and moves to the Senate floor for debate.The conservation projects include: -$1 million for the High Elk Conservation Corridor in the White River National Forest. The corridor connects the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness and the Raggeds Wilderness, providing opportunities for biological research.-$11 million to complete the purchase of the Baca Ranch and create the Great Sand Dunes National Park and the Baca National Wildlife Refuge. The 97,000-acre refuge contains wetlands, grasslands and sand dunes that provide critical habitat areas for rare species. -$6 million for the U.S. Forest Service to purchase the Beaver Brook watershed, a 5,700-acre parcel, from the city of Golden. The city of Golden must use the money to improve the city’s water supply and water quality. -$2.3 million for a conservation easement for the Soap Mesa Ranch at the rim of the Black Canyon of the Gunnison. The easement, funded by the Forest Legacy Program, assures that the valuable landscape won’t be disturbed in the future and allows for further research on the property’s cultural, ecological and historic significance. -$600,000 for a U.S. Bureau of Land Management land purchase at the Canyon of the Ancients National Monument.-$500,000 for a BLM purchase in the Upper Arkansas River Basin.”These projects encompass a broad cross section of Colorado, while illustrating the concept of multiple land use. There will be areas for visitors to enjoy the Colorado outdoors and areas that will remain pristine habitats for our wildlife.” Campbell said.Campbell is Colorado’s sole delegate on the Interior Appropriations Committee.
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