Congressman Doug Lamborn (CO-05) today released the findings of a Preliminary Environmental Assessment (PEA) report on possible sites for a new veterans' national cemetery in southern Colorado. The PEA, commissioned by the Department of Veterans Affairs, finds four sites in El Paso County that would be suitable for the cemetery.
The PEA found no potential physical, environmental, cultural, or socioeconomic impacts with the following four sites, with the caveat that "mitigation and management measures and best management practices identified in this PEA are implemented":
Kane Ranch: located east of Fountain, Colorado on Squirrel Creek Road
4-Way Ranch: located northeast of Falcon, Colorado on State Highway 24
Rolling Hills Ranch: located east of Colorado Springs, Colorado near the intersection of Bradley and South Meridian Roads
Bradley Heights: located east of Colorado Springs, Colorado near the intersection of Bradley and South Marksheffel Roads
From the report:
Site-specific impacts would be further evaluated in a subsequent, tiered EA (Site-Specific EA) once a site has been selected, acquired, and the proposed design process has been initiated. The mitigation, avoidance, and management measures identified in this PEA 55 would be incorporated into that future process and analysis. Therefore, this PEA concludes that a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) is appropriate, and that an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is not required.
Congressman Lamborn has worked closely with Congressman Scott Tipton and previously Representative John Salazar of the 3rd Congressional District and with southern Colorado veterans groups to bring this new cemetery to Colorado.
"These findings bring us one step closer to breaking ground on a new national cemetery for the veterans of southern Colorado. Our veterans and their families have waited many years for this, and it is gratifying to see progress being made. I thank all the veterans in our district who have worked tirelessly on this over the years." -- Doug Lamborn (CO-05)
The VA will hold a public meeting to discuss the findings of the PEA on Thursday, June 7, 2012, 6-8 pm at the Retired Enlisted Association (TREA) facility at 834 Emory Circle, Colorado Springs.
In addition, the Draft PEA is available for public review and comment through 24 June 2012. The document is available electronically at: http://www.cem.va.gov/cem/EA.asp or in paper at the following Colorado Springs Public Library branches:
- Sand Creek Branch, 1821 S. Academy Blvd.
- Ruth Holley Branch, 685 N. Murray Blvd.
Written comments may be mailed to: Johnathan Reiker, Director; Memorial Service Network III; 155 Van Gordon St.; Suite 500; Lakewood, CO; 80228-1709 or via e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
The VA is expected to select one of the four preliminarily-approved sites before September 30, 2012.