Thanks to all that helped yesterday. It was long, but very interesting to listen to. I listened to the opposing side, but my internet connection was having problems when listening to the proponents information.
Many of the speakers opposed to HB1188 suggested working on hand shake solutions versus approving this bill. However, with guys like Shaw and the Harmel operation, the hand shake solution seems impossible.
It seems to me that many of the ranchers are just as scared as boaters to push the issue to a ballot vote or supreme court ruling. As much as land owners want to kill this bill, I can see why some of the land owners are worried about this escalating beyond this bill. Many of the supporting decision points are not on the land owners side:
- Common Law Navigability rights
- Colorado Constitution stating the public owns our water, rivers, streams, and water ways
- Other states with high water mark law as the standard or more liberal ruling on floating rights through private property
- Land owners are way out numbered by the shear number of people wanting access
- Tourism revenue
- and the weak Emmert case that they want to use as the precedent
I found this web page a pretty comprehensive overview of the issue: www.fryingpananglers.com/archive-essays/articles/Legal comments on Floating Colorado rivers/The-legalities-of-Floating-on-Colorado-waters.htm
Who knows what would happen if this escalates beyond this bill? It could be bad for either side, but I would think the right to float would win, I hope. Maybe, it is time to fight this out for once and for all, if this bill does not go through, as this is only going to escalate, if left undecided.