DeBeque Seeing Highs, Lows Of Energy Exploration

For years the town of Debeque has been a quiet town where the annual Wild Horse Days celebration was the area's most famous event. Now the town is seeing growth fuel mostly by energy development. New townhouses are being completed and more residential construction is on the way.

But the town is also seeing another side to the energy boom. Surrounded by gas pipielines that some call poetential bombs, the fire department struggles to provide service with anitquated and broken-down equipment. The town Marshall says he needs another deputy for his two-person staff so that backcountry areas can be better patrolled.

Town administrators see the problem as a classic "chicken-or-egg" problem of what comes first, services or growth. Without energy development there is no tax base to provide emergency services, but without those services it may be too difficult to allow the tax base to grow.