DENVER – The U.S. Interior Department will send $18 million from oil and gas development from Colorado’s Roan Plateau back to the state.
Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke made the announcement Tuesday during a Senate committee hearing.
The money is leftover from the cleanup of Anvil Points, a naval oil shale research site northwest of Rifle. Payments for natural gas leasing on the Roan Plateau paid for the cleanup, which ended in 2012. Lawmakers have been trying to get the extra money for years.
The Daily Sentinel reports that state law requires the money to be spread out across the state. However, legislation pending at the state Capitol would send it to four northwestern Colorado counties – directly to Rio Blanco and Moffat counties and to federal mineral lease districts in Mesa and Garfield counties.