Colorado Receives $10.2 Million in Emergency Watershed Funds

Funding Will Help Restore Watersheds in El Paso County Following July 2015 Floods on Waldo Canyon Burn Scar

Colorado Springs, CO - Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet today announced that Colorado will receive $10,240,800 from the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) Program for recovery work related to flooding in Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs.

Heavy rains in July 2015 flooded parts of Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs, threatening city and county utilities. Loss of vegetation after the 2012 Waldo Canyon fire intensified the resulting erosion. The EWP funding will be used to repair erosion, protect infrastructure, and reduce the potential for future flooding.

"In recent years, residents of Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs have weathered numerous natural disasters that have taken their toll on the communities," Bennet said. "We've fought alongside them to ensure federal funding is available to help recover from these tragedies. Today's announcement will go a long way toward helping these communities complete critical recovery projects and help mitigate future disasters."

Bennet led efforts with Colorado's Congressional delegation to secure EWP resources to help Colorado communities recover from the Waldo Canyon and High Park fires. He is the Ranking Member of the Senate Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Forestry and Natural Resources - the subcommittee with jurisdiction over Farm Bill conservation programs like EWP.

Bennet also reintroduced a bill with Senator Mike Crapo (R-ID) last August to provide targeted investments for wildfire mitigation. The PREPARE Act would authorize a wildfire mitigation grant program, allow the President to provide post-wildfire mitigation assistance to states, and would require the President to consider post-fire flooding when making "major disaster" declarations.