Lamborn Troubled by Ritter's Lack of Support for Military

June 8, 2009
Press Release

Washington, May 18 -

Today, Governor Ritter’s staff confirmed the Governor will sign into law HB 1317, a bill designed to thwart the Army’s expansion at the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site, PCMS, in Southeastern Colorado.  Congressman Doug Lamborn (CO-05) today issued the following statement in reaction to the decision.

"Considering the state of Colorado’s economy, and the fact that we remain a nation at war, I am extremely disappointed in Governor Ritter’s decision to sign HB 1317. In the short term, this bill could result in the loss of an additional Brigade Combat Team with about 5,000 soldiers and support personnel for Colorado. But those numbers may be just the tip of the iceberg in terms of job losses.

"If the Army is unable to grow and train in Colorado, I am concerned they will begin to look outside our state for future growth, and even consider cutting the size of their forces in Colorado. While this bill would not preclude the Army from expanding PCMS, it does send the wrong message to our troops."

"A lot is on the line here, and it’s time Coloradans wake up to how serious a threat this bill is to the future of Fort Carson, the state’s second largest employer. And let’s be clear, this is not just an El Paso County issue. All of Colorado benefits from the annual impact of Fort Carson on our economy – an estimated $1.64 billion. A good part of the money ends up in the state treasury from income and sales taxes.

"As we approach Memorial Day, it is important to remember what is ultimately at stake, the safety of our troops in combat. We owe them the very best training we can give them so they can win wars and return home safely.

"It’s very troubling that the Governor would agree to a discriminatory policy that lets land board property be used for any purpose except for the soldiers defending our freedom.

"Finally, private property rights must be respected. Willing sellers should be free to put their land to the best use possible."-Congressman Doug Lamborn

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