Washington, D.C. - Colorado U.S. Senators Michael Bennet and Cory Gardner today introduced a bill to address Bolts Ditch in the town of Minturn, Colorado. Representative Jared Polis (CO-02) introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.
When Holy Cross Wilderness Area was designated by Congress in 1980, Bolts Ditch was inadvertently left off of the list of existing water facilities. This legislation would authorize special use of the Bolts Ditch headgate and the segment of the Bolts Ditch within the Holy Cross Wilderness Area, allowing of Minturn to use its existing water right to fill Bolts Lake.
"This bill represents a practical solution that will allow the town to use and maintain Bolt's Ditch without compromising the Holy Cross Wilderness Area," Bennet said. "Our office has been working with Minturn on this issue for several years, and we look forward to collaborating with the delegation and local leaders to move this bill through Congress and finally resolve this problem."
"This legislation finally provides a solution to a 30-year-old problem," said Gardner. "Our municipalities must have the ability to utilize their existing water rights, and it is important Minturn has access to fill Bolts Lake."
Representative Polis said, "Residents of Minturn, as well as those across the Central Mountains, have long relied on water infrastructure like Bolt's Ditch to access clean and affordable drinking water. This bill will ensure that the Town of Minturn is able to utilize an important resource, and do so without compromising the sanctity of the surrounding wilderness areas. I'm proud of this legislation's bipartisan approach, and I thank Senator Gardner, Senator Bennet, Representative Lamborn, Representative Tipton, Eagle County and the Town of Minturn for partnering with me in this important effort."