Friday, August 16, 2013

Udall, Army Announce Steps Toward Withdrawal of Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site Waiver

Mark Udall, who serves on the U.S. Senate Armed Services Committee, and Assistant Secretary of the Army Katherine Hammack announced today that the U.S. Army has no plans, no funding, and no Congressional authority to expand its footprint at the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site. In a victory for southern Colorado ranchers and residents, Assistant Secretary Hammack also announced that the Army would be taking steps to evaluate Fort Carson's training requirements — a necessary step to withdrawing the land-acquisition waiver that has been a source of serious concern to ranchers for years. The announcement came after Udall, Hammack and southern Colorado leaders, including Otero County Commissioners Kevin Karney and Jim Baldwin and all three members of the Las Animas County Commission, met in Pueblo. Under the plan laid out today, the U.S. Army has agreed to re-evaluate the training acreage requirement for the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site and work toward withdrawing its land-acquisition waiver in light of recent personnel reductions at Fort Carson. Udall has been a strong advocate for soldiers and residents of southern Colorado and has fought to secure assurances from the Army that it will not expand the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site. Udall also is supporting an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that makes it clear the U.S. Army cannot expand the site without specific approval by Congress and a thorough environmental study...more

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