On the front page I posted an issue statement in opposition of Boulder County and Longmont collaborating to terminate inherently perpetual conservation easements for development purposes.  It’s a bit complicated and I’m still learning, but in general I can describe the steps the county and city take to convert what we all believed were perpetually conserved lands into acreage available for development.

The legalese that defines perpetual conservation easements is many sections long, generally describing how the contract cannot be broken. Boulder County is, however, staffed with clever attorneys who insert a clause stating if the property is ever sold the county has first right of refusal. Well, that doesn’t seem so bad. The county set up the conservation easement, so presumably the easement will continue to be enforced by the county, right? Not so fast, because here is where the tricky part comes in.

It is against state law to enforce a perpetual conservation easement on oneself, so the moment the county takes possession the easement terminates. Now the county is free to do with the property as they please, and when located on Longmont’s perimeter this means allowing Longmont to annex it into the city and zone it however our council sees fit. This is the sneaky way a conservation easement we all thought was forever protected is being turned into a 358 unit development.

Try this interactive map to view all the conservation easements that surround Longmont.

Go HERE for additional information.

One thought on “Let’s preserve our conservation easements!

  1. John says:

    This conservation easement transfer by our local officials is very concerning. The perception is that those in charge prefer bringing in more tax revenue verses maintaining a good balance. That was one of the reasons I moved to Longmont in the first place.
    Does this go against the original intent of the owner and why they entered into such a contract? Meaning is this a bait-and-switch?
    What does this do for added water storage needs? As these new developments are completed are we expanding our water storage?
    Is the cost of added traffic being taken into account, such as adding/expanding roads? Will Airport Rd or Hover Rd become six lanes to handle all this added transportation.

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