Colorado Gubernatorial Candidates Oppose Drilling Setback Initiative

Denver—Walker Stapleton and Jared Polis don’t see eye-to-eye on many issues but the candidates hoping to be the next governor of Colorado do agree that Citizen’s Ballot Initiative 97 would be bad for the state.  Appearing before the Colorado Oil and Gas Association’s annual Energy Summit, Stapleton, the Republican candidate and Democrat, Polis both say the initiative that would increase the so-called ‘buffer zone’ between new wells and occupied buildings from 500 feet to 2,500 feet goes overboard.  Stapleton says Colorado can have both a clean environment and thriving oil and gas industry.  Polis says the state should respect the industry’s economic contributions while doing more to protect public health and safety.  Polis says more research needs to be done to deal with conflicts between the industry and neighborhoods.  Stapleton says most Democrats are out to impose tougher restrictions on the industry that would eventually kill jobs. The Garfield County Board of Commissioners discussed the dangers of Initiative 97, saying it would essentially destroy the local economy.