Photos by Pam Zubeck
The main lodge on the 83-acre Ranch at Emerald Valley, located about nine miles southwest of The Broadmoor.
Rep. Doug Lamborn and two other Colorado legislators have reintroduced several bills dealing with public lands, his office said in a news release issued today.
Among them is the Crags, Colorado Land Exchange Act. This is the deal in which The Broadmoor will trade forest land west of Pikes Peak for the acreage upon which its Ranch at Emerald Valley sits. Under its agreement with the Forest Service, The Broadmoor has to account for revenues to the government. If the resort owned the property outright, of course, that requirement would go away.
Here's how the swap is described in a news release jointly released by Lamborn, a Republican, Rep. Jared Polis, a Democrat, and Scott Tipton, also a Republican:
This bill would convey 320 acres of land on the west side of Pikes Peak to the U.S. Forest Service. The Broadmoor Hotel currently owns the land, and in exchange, the government will transfer an 83-acre parcel located at Emerald Valley Ranch to the Broadmoor.
The Emerald Valley property is a verdant respite from urban life.
We previously reported on this land swap
a couple of times.
Three other bills dealing with public lands, as outlined in the news release:
• Bolts Ditch Access and Use Act - This legislation would allow the town of Minturn to use its existing water right to fill Bolts Lake by giving the town special use of the Bolts Ditch headgate and the segment of the Bolts Ditch within the Holy Cross Wilderness Area. When Congress designated Holy Cross Wilderness Area in 1980, Bolts Ditch was inadvertently left off the list of existing water facilities.
• Arapaho National Forest Boundary Adjustment Act - This bill would expand the Arapaho National Forest, informally known as the “Wedge,” to include ten new parcels of land, which are currently undeveloped. The move enables the U.S. Forest Service to effectively protect and preserve an area were millions of people travel annually.
• Elkhorn Ranch and White River National Forest Conveyance Act – This legislation would resolve a costly title dispute between the federal government and private landowners. It would convey a small portion of land near Rifle to its property-owners who have used and paid property taxes on the acreage for years.
Lamborn: He says he's looking out after public lands.
"Last Congress," the release adds, "all four bills passed the House of Representatives, but did not make it to the U.S. Senate for a vote. Both Colorado Sens. Michael Bennet, a Democrat, and Cory Gardner, a Republican, introduced Senate companion legislation last Congress."
Lamborn is quoted as saying, "I am pleased to have worked alongside my House colleagues, Jared Polis and Scott Tipton, to introduce these commonsense bills to resolve various land disputes and improve access to our public lands. I hope to see these four bipartisan bills enacted into law as quickly as possible.”
We know this is no surprise, but it's worth noting that Philip Anschutz, owner of The Broadmoor, contributed $2,700 to Lamborn in May.
As you may recall, The Broadmoor and the city
did a land swap last year.