Club 20 addresses Western Slope issues

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) -- Club 20 had their spring meeting today at Colorado Mesa University.
“A lot of the insiders, and movers and shakers are either members or participants at these events,” said Tom Harnad member on the Board of Directors for Club 20.

Congressman, Scott Tipton, a long time member of Club 20, spoke at the event and feels the event is one of the most important gatherings for the Western Slope.

“To be able to express our voice from the West Slope view of the world into the Denver legislature,” said Tipton.

Tipton introduced legislation he is proposing, such as the Healthy Forest Management and Wildfire Act, which he says will help prevent the threat of floods.

“The prospects of the 100-year flood happening every year because we did not get in and treat those forests and have responsible management of them,” said Tipton.

Another hot topic at Club 20 was hydraulic fracturing and the Colorado Department of Natural Resources was there to discuss the rules and regulations and it’s impact on the oil business.

“We found that after our rules that production not only has not gone down, but after our 8 rule making, which was a complete over all of our rules…production went up,” said Ginny Brannon Assistant Director for Water and Energy for the Colorado Department of Natural Resources.

Governor Hickenlooper spoke at the event and addressed key issues affecting the Western Slope, starting with gun control.

“Gun checks they are an inconvience, but we have to all agree we have to make some compromises to keep guns outta the hands of dangerous people,” said Hickenlooper.

The governor also talked about fracking.

“Fracking is an industrial process and we have to be careful, but done properly it can be done without putting groundwater at risk without polluting our air,” said Hickenlooper.

Fracking is controversial issue and Benita Phillips, President of the Colorado Congress of Mesa County has concerns.

“It does cause cracks [well casings] and who knows what has been opened up and where that’s coming from,” explains Phillips.

Club 20 is a place for members of the community to be heard and connect with politicians.
“Mutually beneficial relationship [Club 20] because they like to hear from us because they know we are serious and we count, and we have a chance to be helpful and supportive as well,” said Harnad.

Membership of Club 20 is open to anyone with an interest in maintaining and preserving Western Colorado.

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