Protecting and implementing local authority to protect water resources.
QQ’s work in this area broadly includes any efforts to protect water quality and quantity and defend local government ability to regulate for environmental protection, including protecting local 1041 authority. Lately, many challenges to local government ability to regulate for environmental protection has arisen in the context of oil and gas regulation, as discussed in greater detail below. QQ also works with local governments to help strengthen and implement water quality provisions of their land use codes, with QQ members and statewide. QQ maintains a legal defense fund, available for use as approved by QQ membership, to be used for special projects or efforts which may arise.
More information on our work by topic (each topic links to new page or below information):
- 1041 authority. Background and QQ work
- Oil and gas and local authority
- Integrating land use and water supply planning
- Development review under 208 Regional Water Quality Management Plan
- Legislative Monitoring
- Legal Defense Fund
Oil and Gas and Local Authority.
In recent years, the State and the oil and gas industry have most often challenged local authority to regulate for water quality protections relating to oil and gas development. QQ has participated written an amicus brief, participated in rulemakings before the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC), and monitored relevant legislation relating to local authority to regulate oil and gas development.
- Fort Collins vs. COGA. Amicus brief, 2015.
- QQ participated as a party in the 2015-16 COGCC Rulemaking to enact the recommendations from the Governor’s Oil and Gas Taskforce, convened in 2015.
Model Land Use Standards for Water Quality Protection.
In 2017, QQ is working on updating its 1999 Model Land Use Standards for Water Quality Protection. This model code is the result of a review of QQ local government land use codes as well as other jurisdictions such as Tahoe Region, Nevada and California; Salt Lake City, Utah; Denver, Colorado; and Truckee, California. While the model standards are specifically for the QQ region, they are the only existing model standards for water quality in the State.
Development review under 208 Regional Water Quality Management Plan.
Land Use and Water Workshops. QQ has hosted workshops for members and others statewide on better integrate water management and water quality into land use planning.
- 2014 Water and Land Use workshop outcomes summary offers a good example of the type of discussion and format of those workshops.
Statewide Dialogues. QQ members meet with elected officials and staff from other local governments around the state to talk discuss ways to strengthen and implement water quality and water conservation provisions of land use codes and plans.
- QQ county commissioners and metro area county commissioners monthly for six months to discuss land use and water planning and develop comments as Colorado’s Water Plan was being developed. The resulting letter, signed by ______ 9______ elected officials was submitted to the Colorado Water Conservation Board and included in Colorado’s Water Plan.
- Legislative monitoring. QQ monitors legislation in the Colorado General Assembly for proposed attempts to erode or eliminate local governments’ 1041 authority. Members may take positions on bills and work with a lobbyist to ensure 1041 authority is not eroded or eliminated. See policy V, influence water policy, for more information.
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