DENVER (CBS4) – Proposition 112, the initiative requiring greater oil and gas setbacks for new development projects, has been rejected by Colorado voters.
It was rejected by a margin of 57 percent to 42 percent.
Proposition 112 would have banned drilling within 2,500 feet of occupied buildings and vulnerable areas like schools and parks on non-federal land. However, the sites that are already in operation would have been grandfathered in to the current rule of 500 to 1,000 feet.
Opponents of 112 believed the limitations that would have come with the measure would have devastated the state’s economy.
“So what we have under this measure is a 2,500 foot setback and you draw a circle around that and it becomes a mile across. Then pretty soon you’ve got concentric circles across the state which takes out 94 percent of the private land in the top five oil and gas producing counties in Colorado, effectively a ban on our industry,” said opponent Dan Haley in a CBS4/CPT12 debate in September.
PHOTO GALLERY: Election Day In Colorado 2018
Supporters said the measure would have put public safety first.
“I think there’s a lot of times, too, that people don’t realize that people who collected these signatures, people who signed this ballot initiative, are teachers, are school board members. They are people who would supposedly benefit from the severance taxes. But then we have schools that are — we have three schools doing emergency evacuation drills. So at what point do we say that money trumps health and safety. So we say no,” said Heidi Henkel, a 112 supporter.
ELECTION RESULTS: See The Complete Colorado 2018 General Election Results
Tens of millions of dollars were spent on ads against the ballot measure this year. That included an ad that featured former state leaders Republican Bill Owens and Democrat Ken Salazar.