Bennet, Hickenlooper Testify in Support of Dolores River National Conservation Area and Special Management Area Act and CORE Act at Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Hearing

Video of Bennet’s Testimony is Available HERE

Video of Hickenlooper’s Remarks is Available HERE

Washington, D.C. — Today, Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper, a member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, spoke during a Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests, and Mining hearing in support of the Dolores River National Conservation Area and Special Management Area Act and Colorado Outdoor Recreation & Economy (CORE) Act. For over a decade, Bennet has worked with Coloradans to draft these bills, which will protect approximately 488,000 acres of public lands in Colorado.

“Coloradans crafted these bills on kitchen tables and at trailheads across our state. The bills were written in Colorado, not in Washington. And they reflect thoughtful, bipartisan collaboration among tribes, county commissioners, businesses, ranchers, sportsmen, and conservationists,” said Bennet.

On the Dolores River bill, Hickenlooper said:

“Over the course of 15 years we’ve had counties, farmers, whitewater [boating] advocates, conservation groups, water managers, the Ute Mountain Ute [Tribe] down in the Southwestern corner of Colorado all working together to create the Dolores River National Conservation Area and Special Management Area Act. The broadly-supported solutions in this bill offer a perfect example of Coloradans from across various interests and across parties coming together to share, the word I always used to use is topophilia—a love of place—that really helps make our state and so much of the West so beautiful.”

On the CORE Act, Bennet said:

“Coloradans of all stripes have been working on the CORE Act for over a decade to conserve over 420,000 acres of public lands in Colorado. County commissioners across the political spectrum, outfitters, ranchers, hunters and anglers, and local businesses all came together to hammer out a compromise and find the best way forward to protect iconic places like the Thompson Divide and the San Juan Mountains.”

“The CORE Act, like the Dolores River bill, reflects the kind of bipartisan consensus that should be honored by the Senate.”


The CORE Act would protect approximately 420,000 acres of public land in Colorado, establish new wilderness areas, and safeguard existing outdoor recreation opportunities to boost the economy for future generations. Of the land protected by the bill, 71,000 acres are designated as new wilderness, and nearly 80,000 acres are designated as new recreation and conservation management areas that preserve existing uses, such as motorized recreation and mountain biking.

The Dolores River National Conservation Area and Special Management Area Act would protect over 68,000 acres of public lands in three Colorado counties of Montezuma, Dolores, and San Miguel. The legislation is the result of more than a decade of discussion and collaboration between counties, the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, water managers, conservation groups, landowners, ranchers, recreationists, and energy companies.

Bennet’s full testimony as delivered is available HERE