Monday, December 19, 2011

Pinon Canyon ban included in federal budget bill

A ban that blocks the Army from spending any money to expand the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site is part of the $915 billion omnibus spending bill passed by the House on Friday. The funding ban, first put into the federal budget in 2007 by Colorado Reps. Marilyn Musgrave and John Salazar, has been a key obstacle in the six-year-old conflict between the Army and Southeastern Colorado ranchers over the 238,000-acre training range northeast of Trinidad. Rep. Scott Tipton, the Republican who replaced Salazar in the 3rd Congressional District this year, had to scramble last spring to make certain the ban was retained in the continuing budget resolution that kept the federal government operating this year. But he made certain the ban was retained in the omnibus spending bill that lawmakers are adopting for the new year. "I continue to stand with the ranching community of Pinon Canyon and am working to ensure they have certainty. The funding ban extension is a step to providing that certainty," Tipton said in a statement Friday...more

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