First Regular Session

Sixty-second General Assembly

LLS NO. R99­0961.01 Pam Cybyske



also SENATOR Hillman.



WHEREAS, The "Endangered Species Act of 1973" (ESA) needs to be amended to encourage proactive species conservation efforts at the state level rather than reactive, burdensome, and costly efforts at the federal level; and

WHEREAS, Merely listing a species as threatened or endangered does little to conserve the species; and

WHEREAS, Many state programs such as Colorado's nongame program have been very successful in conserving species such as the boreal toad without a federal listing; and

WHEREAS, The ESA should provide incentives for states to adopt proactive approaches to avoid the listing of species under the ESA rather than penalizing such efforts; and

WHEREAS, The ESA should be amended to provide that a federal listing is not required where a state has already adopted a program to protect the species unless it is absolutely necessary to avoid nationwide extinction; and

WHEREAS, If a state has an effective program to protect a listed species in place, that program should be recognized as a reasonable and prudent alternative under the ESA, thereby providing a cost­effective means for species recovery, maintaining state jurisdiction over land and water resources, and allowing economic development to move forward; and

WHEREAS, States should not be penalized for efforts to enhance or establish populations of species by federal pre­emption once the species is listed, rather, such populations should qualify as experimental under the ESA, thereby maintaining control and regulation of the species by the state; and

WHEREAS, The ESA should not be applied retroactively, and projects in existence prior to the passage of the ESA that may come up for a federal permit or license renewal but do not involve an expansion of the project or an increase in the environmental impact of the project should not be subject to consultation under Section 7 of the ESA; and

WHEREAS, Federal implementation of the ESA to protect aquatic species must consider state water rights, and any recovery program should be structured to avoid or minimize intrusion into state authority over water allocation and administration; and

WHEREAS, The administration's "No Surprises" policy should be adopted as an amendment to the ESA so that permit holders and landowners have some assurance that once ESA requirements have been met, no further mitigation efforts will be required; now, therefore,

Be It Resolved by the House of Representatives of the Sixty­second General Assembly of the State of Colorado, the Senate concurring herein:

That we, the members of the Sixty­second General Assembly, urge Congress to adopt these amendments to the federal "Endangered Species Act of 1973".

Be It Further Resolved, That a copy of this resolution be sent to the President of the United States, the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the United States House of Representatives, and each member of Colorado's Congressional delegation.