Nov 18, 2009 11:10 AM by Associated Press

Army drops appeal over Pinon Canyon study

The Army is dropping its appeal of a court ruling related to plans to step up training at Pinon Canyon, Fort Carson's down range training site.

The Army appealed a Sept. 8 federal court ruling that said it didn't adequately assess the environmental effects of increasing training at the southeast Colorado site.

It filed a motion to dismiss the appeal on Tuesday. Justice Department lawyers representing the Army refused to comment on the move.

Ranchers have been fighting to stop the Army from expanding the training area but Judge Richard Matsch's ruling only dealt with plans to send more soldiers to the existing site.

He threw out the environmental study on increasing training there up to 365 days a year, saying the Army's own reports show that more modest training had caused damage at the site.

The mountain post had wanted expansion of Pinon Canyon to train soldiers for Iraq and Afghanistan deployments.


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