Sep 29, 2011 11:36 PM by John Romero
Proposals for oil and gas exploration in the Banning Lewis Ranch area of El Paso County have been put on hold for now.
After two town halls and numerous work sessions, Commissioners want to take a closer look at the effects of oil and gas drilling before making a final decision. They want to look at things like land use regulations as well as state and federal guidelines.
Banning Lewis home owner Wade Reidt likes that choice. "I think getting some more knowledge and research done as far as benefits and disadvantages are would be great." he says outside his home. Reidt tells us he's in favor of the proposed gas and oil exploration. "If the oil companies are willing to put back in the community as well as drill for oil and gas, that certainly is a huge advantage."
But not everyone feels that way. "There's a lot more open space in other areas that they could be drilling instead of here." says Lewis Banning resident Christina Tormollan. She tells us she moved to Colorado to get away from the drilling. "When we bought (the house), we didn't expect all of the sudden to have oil rigs and all of the pollution. Moving from California where we saw it. Out here to Colorado with the clean air I just think it's unfortunate for our children's sake."
With residents on both sides of the fence and a large chunk of land hanging in the balance, county commissioners have 4 months to figure it all out.
Over the next few months commissioners will be touring proposed drilling sites as well as visiting other areas in the state that are already drilling.