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Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor,It appears that the Colorado oil and gas lobbyists control our state representatives. Representatives Josh Penry, of Grand Junction, and Ray Rose, of Montrose, voted against legislation that would have given property owners some control over how gas drilling occurs on their land. As a result of their positions, the measure failed 6-5 in the agriculture committee.If you do not control the mineral rights under your property, Colorado law allows an energy company to come onto your land and set up drilling operations on your property without your permission. The industrial drilling site will take up to five acres of your land with roads, well pads, waste pits and pipelines. The gas company is not required to pay you for the use of your land. You will have an industrial site located on your property for as long as the resource remains, up to 40 years. Colorado oil and gas laws allow for a well to be drilled 150 feet from your home.The “Land Owners Protection” bill introduced by Rep. Kathleen Curry, of Gunnison, would have required the energy company to negotiate a surface-use agreement with the property owner before drilling could begin. For the first time, people who own their land, but not the mineral rights, would have to be consulted about how drilling occurs on their property.Reps. Rose and Penry voted against their constituents when they voted with the oil and gas industry!Carole ChowenGrand Junction

Dear Editor,Re: Dale Reed’s April 5 letter. Certainly, deer crossing signs, lighted highways and deer whistles are ineffective. Deer can’t read signs or understand why the road is lit and the grass is not. Whistling at a deer is certainly a good way to get slapped. Yes, eight-foot fencing and underpasses would be nice. But how are the deer supposed to view the tourists or the many local environmentalist life forms? If deer had a vote, they would oppose the destruction of their natural routes from the water hole to food by our roads. Deer certainly understand the natural laws of physics; even they comprehend that at the speed traveled by most autos, the headlight illumination is not adequate for safe stopping distance and therefore should slow down below the posted speed limit at night!As most deer prefer to walk from their homes to their watering holes and areas of recreation, perhaps mass transit would be appropriate. At least mass transit would get some of them off the highways.I live in Colorado to enjoy the natural beauty of what surrounds us. Slow down, enjoy the scenery, the abundant wildlife, and yes, stop to let them cross the road on their way to whatever. If you need the safety of wildlife-free roads, try New York City, or take the bus.Randy McIntoshRifle


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