The oil drilling boom along Colorado’s Front Range is generating a lot of tax revenue for cash-strapped governments. But it’s also putting a strain on state regulators whose job it is to make sure all the drilling and well sites aren’t polluting.
There are now more than 47,000 active oil and gas wells in Colorado, but the state employs just seventeen inspectors to keep tabs on them. One solution being floated is to allow local governments to hire their own inspectors to ease some of the workload. But it’s getting mixed reviews across the state.
A task force appointed by the Governor now has less than two weeks to issue its final report on whether local governments should have more authority to regulate oil and gas drilling within their boundaries.