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Adams County commissioners approve oil and gas moratorium amid legislative uncertainty

Posted at 6:04 PM, Mar 20, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-20 20:04:28-04

BRIGHTON, Colo. — Fearing a rush on applications amid “sweeping” oil and gas regulations under consideration in the state legislature, the Adams County Board of Commissioners approved a resolution Wednesday placing a temporary moratorium on new oil and gas facilities.

Members of the board unanimously approved the moratorium during a special public hearing Wednesday. The measure goes into effect immediately and will remain in place for six months, according to a news release from the county.

Senate Bill 19-181 would make public safety the top priority of state regulators and give local governments authority over the location of new wells. Currently, production is the primary goal, and the state determines well locations.

“Until we have more clarity on whether this current bill will pass and what impact it could have locally, the Board decided to enact a temporary moratorium so we can evaluate any new tools available to address the health and safety of our residents,” said Board Chair Steve O’Dorisio in the release.

The moratorium does not affect pipelines, active wells, or any applications previously submitted to Adams County.