Sloppy search for records related to proposed Colorado resort development put agency in the hot seat

By: Bob Berwyn, Summit County Citizens Voice
October 2, 2015

Conservation advocates battling against plans for a massive resort development at Wolf Creek Pass, in southwestern Colorado, won a partial victory in federal court this week, as a judge ruled that the U.S. Forest Service violated the Freedom of Information Act and must release more documents related to the approval of a controversial land trade.

The land trade was approved earlier this year by Rio Grande Forest Supervisor Dan Dallas. It would give the developer, Leavell-McCombs Joint Venture, a way to access a parcel of private land that’s nearly surrounded by public national forest lands by swapping 205 federal acres for 177 acres of private land. If it stands, the trade would enable construction of a resort village for up to 8,000 people.

Conservation advocates oppose the project because of its potential impacts to wildlife habitat, including threatened lynx. They say that the area is not appropriate for a large resort development. Forest Service officials who won’t comment on issues under litigation, said previously that they are required by federal law to provide reasonable access to private property.

Read the full article at Summit County Citizens Voice.

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