Washington, D.C. – Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and John Hickenlooper, member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, today announced the Colorado Outdoor Recreation and Economy (CORE) Act will receive a hearing in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests, and Mining. The CORE Act hearing will take place on Wednesday, June 16 at 3:00 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. MT.
“In Colorado, we believe protecting public land drives economic growth,” said Bennet and Hickenlooper. “We are grateful for the diligence of community leaders across Colorado who developed the CORE Act over the last ten years, and we look forward to finally getting this bill across the finish line.”
“Eagle County is pleased that the CORE Act will have a hearing in the Senate. Our public lands define the American spirit and continue to be a place where people go to gain strength and resiliency. The CORE Act will designate Camp Hale as a National Historic Landscape and preserve important wildlife habitat prized by local hunters and anglers. We are hopeful that the locally-supported CORE Act passes the U.S. Senate so current and future generations can always have a place to go for reflection, growth, and adventure,” said Kathy Chandler-Henry, Eagle County Commissioner.
“This hearing represents the culmination of a decade-long process by stakeholders in Ouray County to protect Mt Sneffels and Sneffels Range one of Colorado’s most iconic mountain ranges. We are ready to get this bill passed into law and are excited for this hearing. We are grateful for the years of work by our Senators to advocate for this important legislation,” said Ben Tisdell, Ouray County Commissioner.
“The CORE Act would enact lasting benefits for future generations of Coloradans by preserving lands, communities, and our cultural heritage. I want to thank our leaders, including Senator Bennet and Senator Hickenlooper, who have had the diligence and patience to see this to the finish line. A Senate committee hearing is a welcome positive step forward,” said Hilary Cooper, San Miguel County Commissioner.
“Gunnison County has strongly supported the CORE Act with its provisions to protect Curecanti National Recreation Area and Thompson Divide in our county. We are excited to see this hearing announced so that we can move this important legislation forward to protect the public land that drives our recreation economy. We are thankful for the dilegence and work of Senators Bennet and Hickenlooper to move this Gunnison County priority forward,” said Roland Mason, Gunnison County Commissioner.
Bennet and Neguse introduced the comprehensive CORE Act for the first time in January 2019, following years of work in Colorado to develop, draft, and negotiate the four individual titles in the bill. The CORE Act combines four previously introduced Colorado public land bills, which have been in development over the past decade: the Continental Divide Recreation, Wilderness, and Camp Hale Legacy Act, the San Juan Mountains Wilderness Act, the Thompson Divide Withdrawal and Protection Act, and the Curecanti National Recreation Area Boundary Establishment Act.
In January 2021, Hickenlooper joined Bennet and Neguse to reintroduce the CORE Act. Hickenlooper is a member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, which has jurisdiction over the bill. The CORE Act passed the House in February, along with other public land provisions.
Of the land protected by the bill, about 73,000 acres are designated as new wilderness, and nearly 80,000 acres are designated as new recreation and conservation management areas that preserve existing outdoor uses, such as hiking and mountain biking. The bill also includes a first-of-its-kind designation for Camp Hale as a National Historic Landscape, to honor World War II veterans and Colorado’s military legacy, and prohibits new oil and gas development in areas important to ranchers and sportsmen in the Thompson Divide.
The CORE Act is supported by a broad coalition of counties, cities, towns, local leaders, conservation groups, sportsmen, and a wide range of outdoor businesses.
The following CORE Act resources are available below:
See frequently asked questions, maps, letters of support, and more at www.bennet.senate.gov/COREAct.