Ed Sealover – Reporter – Denver Business Journal
A pair of meetings Tuesday in which Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper tried to find consensus on a bill to give local governments more control over oil and gas drilling as an alternative to grappling with several potential ballot measures on the matter did not bring about an immediate solution.
Several attendees said they feel energy industry and business leaders would prefer to battle proposed ballot initiatives backed by U.S. Rep. Jared Polis rather than call a special session to pass a bill aimed at appeasing him.
Three officials close to the negotiations spoke about the issue with the Denver Business Journal on Wednesday.
Those sources said the chances of Hickenlooper getting stakeholders to agree to a legislative deal that could increase setbacks between oil and gas wells and homes, or could give cities and counties the ability to do s,o are far lower than the “50/50″ estimates that the governor has given the past two weeks.
Two of the officials spoke under the condition that their names not be mentioned for fear of jeopardizing their roles in the talks.
Hickenlooper has worked for the past three weeks with oil and gas companies that are concerned about 11 constitutional amendments proposed for the November ballot that could allow local governments to increase regulations or even to ban drilling within their borders.
Rockpick says: You also might want to read this interesting article on Jared Polis from Politico. Jared Polis (D-Boulder) is apparently pushing the envelope even within his own party. How Fracking Could Break Colorado Democrats