The continuation of work to develop a good mitigation policy by the Colorado
Division of Wildlife is involving many members and the Board of Directors of CWF.
Eric Kell) and I have been attending the working group meetings, and others have been
showing up at field hearings held across the state.
All of this is necessary because the water developers pushed HB-1244 during the last
legislative session in an effort to curtail the ability of the Division of Wildlife to make
recommendations for mitigation on fisheries and wildlife harmed by certain develop-
ment projects in o r state. Although the water developers were unsuccessful at the legis-
lature. they did create a lot of work for themselves and those of us who want to assure
wildlife has a place in our future.
The main mover among the development community is Marcia Hughes, a lawyer for
the Denver suburbs. Her work is but another example of what happens when a blank
check is given to a lawyer by city government. Her fees, totalling $415,000over the past
couple years, are paid by the so-called Water Providers, a group of metropolitan water
groups who want to see theTwo Forks Dam constructed on the South Platte. Instead of
providing constructive input towards a good mitigation policy, Hughes has acted to
prolong the discussion and to delay a solution which is a strategy often used by the legal
It's clear the goal of the Water Providers is to get off the hook for mitigation of
damage that would be done should the Two Forks Dam be constructed. Hughes is paid
handsomely for her work and may be the reason she is prolonging the process.
All of this isn't as bleak as it sounds. These meetings resulting from HB-1244 are
turning out a lot of support for wildlife mitigation. At meeting after meeting it's be-
coming more and more apparent that people do care enough to speak out. People
realize that there are and will continue to be serious challenges caused by development
to Colorado's fisheries and wildlife resources. The Division of Wildlife must be able to
provide mitigation recommendations or we will lose the wildlife and fisheries resources
we have today. That's what's at stake, and those who have gotten involved in this miti-
Sation fight are doing a good job.
Federation Testifies on Ski Permit Bill
I was able to appear at a Congressional hearing held both in the U.S. House and
Senate regarding H.4489 and S-2266. These bills attempt to provide for changes in the
permitting system for ski areas on National Forest System Lands.
These bills would change from two to one the number of permits required to allow
skiing of the Forest Systems, extend from 30 years to SS years the term of a permit, and
remove the 80-acre maximum acreage for ski areas. These bills were drafted by the Ski
Federation and Colorado Ski Country U.S.A., and Congressman Tim Wirth of Colo-
rado. usually a friend of wildlife, is the prime sponsor!
CWF's testimony opposed extending the term of the permit to 55 years and urged
Congress to direct the Forest Service to consider off-site impacts in decisions to grant
ski area permits and to have a cumulative impact study complete on the impacts of ski-
ing on wildlife habitat.
CWF felt that these bills go too far in the way in which skiing is allowed on public
land. We pointed out that going to 55 years would establish a precedent for other types
of special uses to ask for 55 years as well. In addition. CWF recommended that only
necessary support facilities for skiing be allowed on public land to prevent the complete
commercialization of public land to the detriment of wildlife and other natural re-
Ski areas are important to Colorado. but so are hunting and fishing. It seems hunting
and fishing are always asked to gve up more resources than necessary when ski areas are
permitted on public land. That's the reason our organization has been working to
protect habitat for wildlife in these hearings.
Safeway Puts Wildlife Message on Shopping Bags
The Safeway stores in the Denser region are putting a special message on plastic bags
in their stores in Colorado. Wyoming. South Dakota. Nebraska. Kansas and New
Mexico The message "Mlake a Place For Wldlife In Your World" will begin
appearing on bags in many stores along with information on how to get in touch with
the state federations in each state.
CWF appreciates Safeway's willingness to place these public service announcements
on their bags. There is a constant need to remind people of the importance of wildlife,
and Safeway is helping get the message out to the public. Thanks.
Quail Mountain Review to Begin
The proposal to construct a new ski area near Twin Lakes called Quail Mountain will
pge further action with the notice that a Joint Review Process (JRP) committee has been
formed with Chaffee county y acting as the coordinator. The JRP's objective is to
facilitate an mtergovernmental review of the project.
Quail Mountain is designated as Priority 2 area in the Forest Plan and is basically
surplus to National Forest needs for supplying additional downhill skiing. Because of
the Priority 2 desctplion the Forest Service will not lead the process, but will partici-
pate Ihis means the developer, Dennis O'Neal, will underwrite the funding of the
Quail Mountain is really a queslionable site because of many factors. CWF would like
to see a easibility study completed before the JRP is begun. An independent feasibility
study may prove the site unsuitable for skiing and thus avoid costly work on the part of
many people, including (WF.