by Chet Hardin
This is a big moment for Congressman Doug Lamborn.
Certainly the Republican has seen many of his bills pass through the Republican-controlled House, but this is the first time that one actually stands a chance to make it through the Democrat-controlled Senate — thanks to the Senate sponsorship of Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet.
From the press release:
H.R. 4073 is supported by the Colorado Springs City Council, the Manitou Springs City Council and Mayor, the Colorado Springs Mayor, and the Manitou and Pikes Peak Railway Company.
“This bill will remove a centuries-old legal cloud that has been hanging over a portion of the popular hiking trail. Hikers will be able to use it confidently knowing that the trail's safety and beauty will be protected. It will ensure that the Forest Service can professionally manage and maintain the trail. The Manitou Incline is one of the most spectacular hiking trails in the country and loved by locals and tourists alike. It is a treasure unique to Pikes Peak and we want to ensure it is kept up for generations to come." — Doug Lamborn (CO-05)
H.R. 4073, is technical and narrow in scope. It specifically addresses a right-of-way issue with the railway company. It allows for the U.S. Forest Service to accept the railway's relinquishment of their right-of-way. This is necessary based on an 1875 federal law.
Senator Michael Bennett has introduced companion legislation on the Senate side, S.2341. The bill must pass both the House and the Senate and be signed by the president to become law.
Lamborn explains the need for the bill: