Craig briefs: House passes Tipton’s Healthy Forest Bill |

Craig briefs: House passes Tipton’s Healthy Forest Bill

On Friday, the House passed legislation by Reps. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., and Doc Hastings, R-Wash., to immediately address the hazardous conditions of Western forests by establishing a plan for healthy forest management to reduce the occurrence and severity of wildfire; protect watersheds, species habitats and ecosystems; and prevent the loss of life and property, according to a release from Tipton’s office.

Tipton’s Healthy Forest Management and Wildfire Prevention Act was combined with Natural Resources Committee Chairman Hastings’ Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act during a Natural Resources Committee markup in July. The resulting comprehensive forest management package, H.R. 1526, was passed by the House and now goes to the Senate.

New Colorow wildlife area open to public

After the completion of a land swap between Colorado Parks and Wildlife and ExxonMobil, the Colorow Mountain State Wildlife Area near Meeker now is open to hunters, outdoor recreationists and the general public, according to a press release.

The agency is encouraging everyone to enjoy the newest addition to the nearly 350 state wildlife areas across Colorado. The properties typically are purchased with revenue generated from the sale of hunting and fishing licenses. Colorow Mountain State Wildlife Area was acquired by exchange under terms negotiated by Parks and Wildlife and ExxonMobil. Under state law, Parks and Wildlife is required to manage the areas for the benefit of wildlife.

The acquisition not only opened up new lands to hunting and recreation, it also allows access to several sections of Bureau of Land Management land north of Colorow Mountain State Wildlife Area. Under the terms of the exchange, ExxonMobil received more than 900 acres of Parks and Wildlife land located adjacent to Rio Blanco County Road 5 known as the Square S hayfields. In return, Parks and Wildlife received more than 1,500 acres that constitute the new wildlife area located north of U.S. Highway 64 and Rio Blanco Lake State Wildlife Area, northwest of Meeker. Colorow Mountain SWA will be managed for off-highway and conventional passenger vehicles. Also, a portion is limited to foot and horseback only. Camping will be allowed in designated areas, and visitors are asked to follow all regulations, which can be found at and on signs posted on the property.

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