The Thompson Divide Coalition announced yesterday that Garfield County is supporting proposed legislation to protect the Thompson Divide. Hours later, the County denied that description… and said Commissioners said no such thing.
It was a day of dueling press releases. Around eleven A.M., the Coalition announced that commissioners with Pitkin, Gunnison and Garfield Counties are making a plea... to Republican Representative Scott Tipton to support pending legislation that would limit oil and gas development on the Thompson Divide.
That area is near Carbondale and Glenwood Springs. Commissioners were described as supporting the legislation, introduced by Democratic Senator Michael Bennet. Six hours later, Garfield County put out a statement that its Commissioners are not calling on Congressman Tipton to support Bennet’s bill to prevent more drilling.
The County press release says Commissioner John Martin’s comments were taken out of context. The County believes Commissioner Martin does support federal legislation in general to protect the Thompson Divide… but not the bill currently in Congress. Garfield County checked on the discrepancy after interview requests from Aspen Public Radio. For his part, Congressman Tipton told Pitkin County Commissioners recently that he will not support the Bennet bill.