Bennet Introduces Amendment to Open Door to New Development in Commerce City

Washington, D.C. - Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet introduced an amendment this week to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017 that would allow development of retail and housing properties in Commerce City near the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. The amendment removes deed restrictions on land that Commerce City purchased in the early 2000s. Senator Cory Gardner also sponsored the amendment.

"Our amendment gives Commerce City the authority it should have to develop its land to help boost economic development," Bennet said. "It makes a commonsense change to the deed restrictions on the land to allow the community to move forward with its development plans following an environmental review."

The land purchased by Commerce City was formerly a U.S. Army chemical weapons manufacturing site. It has since been cleaned up and nearby land was established as a Wildlife Refuge. The amendment would allow restrictions on the deed to be removed or modified if a risk assessment conducted under federal environmental law proves that the property is safe for residential housing. Similar language authored by Representative Ed Perlmutter (CO-07) was included in the House-passed National Defense Authorization Act.