80 Colorado Outdoor Businesses Urge Support for America’s Public Land Act
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Durango, CO (February 14, 2019) - U.S. Senators Michael Bennet (D-C.O.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), as well as Representatives Lowenthal (D-C.A), and Perlmutter (D-C.O.) have just introduced legislation seeking to reaffirm the importance of America’s public lands and protect against efforts to sell off federally-controlled lands without an act of Congress. Eighty Colorado businesses have signed a letter supporting the bill and encouraging Colorado’s congressional delegation to back the America’s Public Land Act.
Public lands are owned by all Americans and are an important source of clean air, water, and habitat for native plants and wildlife. They also provide a significant source of energy to power the nation and they are an important economic driver. The outdoor recreation economy provides 6.1 million jobs, $80 billion in federal and local tax revenue, and $646 billion in direct consumer spending annually. In Colorado alone, the outdoor recreation industry supports 229,000 jobs, $9.7 billion in wages and salaries, $2 billion in state and local tax revenue, and $28 billion in consumer spending. Many small business owners across the country depend on tourist dollars that come from having beautiful, protected public lands nearby.
Diane Wren, Owner of Osprey Packs in Cortez, Colorado said, “As a Colorado business owner, with employees and customers who depend on public lands for backpacking, fishing, camping, hiking, biking and other activities, I understand these lands are part of our heritage and important to the health of local communities, our state and country. Passage of the America’s Public Land Act would ensure that all Americans continue to have to access to and enjoy public lands for generations to come.”
“As Americans and Coloradoans, we are all public land owners and have a vested interest in their management. The America’s Public Land Act makes it clear that public lands are to remain in public hands, for the benefit of all Americans. Supporting this piece of legislation is one of the most patriotic things our congressional delegation can do. We call on Congress to protect the great public lands legacy of our country,” said Henry Wood Director of Sales and Marketing for Colorado-based Upslope Brewing Company.
About America’s Public Land Act:
Over the past several years, there have been many efforts to sell off large amounts of public land and to give federal public lands to states either through transfer of ownership, or by giving states decision-making authority over uses on public lands. The America’s Public Land Act would eliminate attempts to sell-off public land or cede decision making authority over public lands to a non-public land management agency.
- Bill Language via Senator Heinrich
- America’s Public Land Act Blog Post from The Wilderness Society - New legislation would stop public land sell-offs
- Media Resources Page – Downloadable b-roll and high resolution photos
- The Wilderness Society’s America’s Public Land Act Fact Sheet
- Anna Peterson, 612-735- 2402, firstname.lastname@example.org, Durango, Colorado
- Brad Brooks, Director, Public Lands Campaign, The Wilderness Society, 208-870-9043, email@example.com
February 14, 2019
The Honorable Michael Bennet The Honorable Cory Gardner
The Honorable Diana DeGette The Honorable Joel Neguse
The Honorable Scott R. Tipton The Honorable Ken Buck
The Honorable Doug Lamborn The Honorable Jason Crow
The Honorable Ed Perlmutter
Dear Members of the Colorado Congressional Delegation:
We are writing to express our support for America’s Public Land Act, and we are asking for you to endorse the bill.
We are your constituents and Colorado businesses who use and enjoy public lands for hunting, fishing, camping, hiking, biking and other uses. As Colorado businesses, we understand the importance of public lands across our state and country and how vital they are to our American heritage. As Americans and Coloradoans, we are all public land owners and have a vested interest in the future access to and management of our public lands.
The majority of people who have moved to and visit Colorado come because of the state’s recreation and beautiful public lands. We owe it to our customers to protect these lands for generations to come – both here in Colorado and across the country.
According to the State of the Rockies Conservation in the West’s annual polls from 2015 to 2018, many people live in West for the freedom to access public lands. Coloradans treasure healthy public lands because they contribute to strong communities, protect the natural environment, attract businesses and talent, and provide treasured outdoor recreation opportunities:
- 84% of Coloradans say that the ability to live near and recreate on public lands like national parks and national forests is a factor in their decision to live in the West.
- 98% of Coloradans say that public lands are an "essential" part of the state's economy
- 72% of Coloradans view public lands managed by federal agencies as “American places belonging to everyone in the nation
Over the past several years, there have been many efforts to sell off large amounts of public land and to give our lands to states either through outright transfer of ownership, or by giving states decision-making authority over uses on America’s public lands. We are opposed to any attempt that would sell-off our public lands, cede decision making authority over public lands to a non-public land management agency, or that would lead to the chipping away at the foundation of America’s public lands legacy.
Colorado is unique because we have access to millions of acres of public land right here in our home state and any threat to our access of these American lands cannot be tolerated. The time has come for Congress to make it clear that keeping access to public lands for all Americans, and maintaining public management of public lands, is of the utmost importance and one of the most patriotic things we can do.
Passage of America’s Public Land Public Act would ensure that millions of Americans will continue to be able to use and enjoy public lands for generations to come by making it explicit that public lands are to be retained in public ownership, for the benefit of all of us.
The nearly 80 Colorado businesses signed onto this letter urge you to hear our business voices, an economic powerhouse in our state estimated in the billions, and support of America’s Public Land Act.
Alpacka Raft LLC
Animas Brewing Company
Backdoor Sports Ltd
Balanced Bookkeeping and Consulting LLC
Christy Sports, LLC
Coach Pete LLC
Colorado Gold Distillery
Crescent Moon Snowshoes
Cruise Planners - Heart & Soul Excursions
Durango Outdoor Exchange
Elevation Beer Company
Green Door Fitness
Hala Gear SUP
High Country Activities
Hog Island Boat Works
Horse & Dragon Brewing Company
Icebox Knitting, LLC
Jagged Edge Mountain Gear
Last Exit Goods
Mad Jacks Mountain Brewery
Marble Distilling Company
Merithew Law, PLLC
Mountain Tap Brewery
Old Town Distilling Co.
Osprey Packs Inc.
Pine Needle Mountaineering
Purl Wax, LLC
Rapid Creek Cycles, LLC
Sanitas Brewing Company
The San Juan Angler
Skirt Sports, Inc.
Small World Adventures
SOL Paddle Boards
Tik Tok Ink
Timberline Events LLC
Trek Light Gear
Upslope Brewing Company
Wagner Custom Skis
Wallaroo Hat Company
The Wellness Bridge / Mettler Marketing
Why Cycles, Inc