Boulder County continues review of oil and gas development regulations

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For Immediate Release

Feb. 27, 2017

Media Contact
Rick Hackett, Land Use Department,

Boulder County continues review of oil and gas development regulations

Board of County Commissioners to accept public testimony at a hearing on March 14

Boulder County, Colo. - The Board of County Commissioners have scheduled two dates in March to review updated Special Review regulations for oil and gas development. Boulder County is expected to release a new draft of the regulations on March 7, which will be posted online and will include responses to comments and direction given by the Commissions at a public hearing last November.


The Boulder County Commissioners intend to put in place the strongest set of regulations allowed under state law to protect the health, safety, and well-being of residents and the environment.


      What: Board of County Commissioners’ Public Hearing


      When: Tuesday, March 14 beginning at 2 p.m.


      Hearing Details: This is a Public Hearing for the Board of County
      Commissioners to consider proposed Land Use Code amendments
      addressing oil and gas development in unincorporated Boulder County.            
      Commissioners will be accepting public testimony at this hearing.
      Online sign-ups for members of the public seeking to speak in-person at
      the hearing will be taken. In-person sign-ups on the day of the hearing will
      also be accepted. Anyone signing up at the time of the hearing will be
      added to the bottom of the existing list in the order received. Written
      comments (including documents or presentations) may be emailed to


      Online Signup Details: On Wednesday, March 1 at noon the sign-up
      forms for Individual Speakers and Pool Time Speakers will become
      available at All signups will be placed in order based
      on the time they are received. Those wishing to sign up for Pooled Time
      will need to include the names and addresses for anyone donating time
       to the Pool.




      What: Board of County Commissioners Public Meeting


      When: Thursday, March 23, 2 p.m.


      Meeting Details: This is a Public Meeting for the Board of County
      Commissioners to consider the adoption of proposed Land Use Code
      amendments addressing oil and gas development within the Boulder
      County Land Use Code. No additional public testimony will be taken
      at this hearing. The opportunity to provide public testimony regarding
      this item will be taken at the Public Hearing on March 14.



Both meetings will be held at the Boulder County Courthouse, 1325 Pearl St., Third Floor, Boulder.


Staff Report and Updated Draft Regulations
The staff report and updated draft regulations are expected to be posted on the county’s Oil and Gas Development webpage by the end of day on March 7.


Land Use staff presented the proposed regulations and public testimony was given to the Planning Commission on Oct. 12. The Planning Commission met on Oct. 27 to deliberate and provide recommendations for the regulations to the Board of County Commissioners. 


On Nov. 15 the Board of County Commissioners heard from Land Use staff and took public testimony on the draft regulations. The Board reconvened on Nov. 17 for a public meeting to deliberate on the regulations, at which time they directed staff to investigate a number of areas and make changes. Those updates to the draft regulations will be presented on March 14, and public testimony will be taken.




The proposed regulations are part of Boulder County’s ongoing efforts to mitigate the impacts of oil and gas development in unincorporated Boulder County. The county has a moratorium in place through May 1, 2017, on the processing of oil and gas development applications. Last May, in response to the Colorado Supreme Court’s decisions regarding the City of Fort Collins and the City of Longmont, Boulder County rescinded its in-place moratorium on new oil and gas development applications (a moratorium that was set to run through July 2018) and adopted a new, temporary moratorium of a shorter duration. The purpose of the new temporary moratorium (now set to expire May 1, 2017) was to provide the county with enough time to update the oil and gas regulations that the county adopted in December 2012 in order to address the shift toward large-scale consolidated facilities that Coloradans are witnessing across the Front Range, as well as changes made at the State since 2012.


For all of the history and details about this issue, please visit the Oil & Gas Development webpage at

The county anticipates adopting and implementing regulations by May 1, 2017, when the current moratorium on oil and gas development is set to expire.