Free Press Letter: Relieved Colorado National Monument will not receive park status |

Free Press Letter: Relieved Colorado National Monument will not receive park status

I’m delighted and relieved that our beloved Colorado National Monument will remain a monument, hopefully forever. Many people of the Grand Valley, including the newly formed Friends of the Colorado National Monument, have led the movement against changing the designation to a park. Tipton and Udall wisely listened to their constituents and realized there is no overwhelming backing for the change.

The Daily Sentinel and Ms. Chappell are way off base in thinking the re-designation would benefit our area economically. In other areas where monuments were renamed parks, not much changed, though statistics can be skewed to show some benefit. Also, any economic benefit from the service-type jobs created by such a change would pale when compared to the economic damage already done here by the loss of so many energy related jobs.

Changing to a park would have resulted in much more federal regulation of our lifestyles, especially from the EPA which has too much regulatory power as it is. It has happened at many other parks and the locals in those areas are not happy. The argument that the CNM would be better protected as a park is nonsense. It is already well protected.

So, the assertion that the monument not becoming a park is deeply disturbing for our area is simply not true. Perhaps for the few who wanted the change. But for the many who did not want the change, Tipton’s and Udall’s decision is a blessing.

Susan Benjamin

Grand Junction, Colo.

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