Loveland's Independent News Source

Loveland - July 25, 2013

Former Colorado State House Representative B.J. Nikkel has filed papers with Loveland's City Clerk
to register a political issue committee focused on oil and gas exploration.  Created in response to
Loveland's growing anti-fracking movement, LEAP (Loveland Energy Action Project) is a non-profit
educational group that will distribute information regarding extraction of fossil fuels.

The growing divide in the community over fracking was on full display last Monday when Loveland's
Planning Commission attempted a hearing on minor administrative changes to the city's oil and gas
development code but instead spent over an hour debating fracking.  The Planning Commission was
asked to amend city code chapter 1877 which regulates new oil and gas developments within the
city limits along with city code chapter 1878 which establishes regulations on new land
development within the city when close to an existing oil and gas development.

Instead of addressing the proposed changes, several commissioners proposed notifications for new
developments should be sent city-wide while another sought to include clean water regulations into
the same codes.  In Colorado, the state is responsible for regulating oil and gas exploration but in
recent years more and more cities have begun passing their own set of enhanced standards while
Ft. Collins and Longmont passed outright bans despite legal advice that the action was in violation of
state law.

Loveland Planning Commissioner and Democrat Party activist Bob Massaro and his wife Carla
Massaro have been active with the anti-fracking group "Protect Our Loveland (POL)."  POL delivered
nearly 4,000 signatures to Loveland's City Clerk yesterday to place an outright ban on fracking
within city limits for a period of two years.    Local Democrats who organized POL pitched the
measure as a "wedge issue" that could bring out more voters in Loveland's November elections
assisting Democrat councilors facing challenging re-elections.

During Monday's planning commission meeting Bob Massaro disclosed his wife's involvement in SOL
by stating "my wife has been involved with the protect our Loveland group" but failed to disclose his
own activities.   Fellow commissioner and Ward 1 council candidate Troy Krenning advised the SOL
members in the audience (which included Massaro's wife) that despite their reactions he didn't
know of any hard evidence that fracking has contaminated ground water other than anecdotal
information not backed by any scientific studies.  Massaro countered that was not true and cited a
website where cases of ground water contamination from fracking can be found.

Nikkel's group, believed to be receiving financial backing from oil and gas interests, is seeking
support from local residents and businesses in an effort to build a community backed issues
committee to counter the ongoing anti-fracking efforts of the Massaros and other local party activists.

A similar group in Ft. Collins is gathering signatures for a five-year fracking ban due by August 5,
while the Ft. Collins City Council will address the issue on August 20.  
Pro-Fracking Group
Formed in Loveland
Former State House Rep.
B.J. Nikkel

For Immediate Release
Contact: BJ Nikkel, 970-217-8994
Loveland Citizens Organize to Foster
Community Dialogue and Responsible
Choices Surrounding Local Energy

Former State Representative BJ Nikkel
Will Head Public Outreach Campaign

Loveland, CO – July 25, 2013 – A
group of Loveland community, business
and civic leaders have come together to
form the Loveland Energy Action
Project (LEAP) in response to
proposals involving energy policy that
would compromise economic growth
and the welfare of our community.  
Former state representative and
longtime Loveland community member
BJ Nikkel will serve as director of LEAP
and lead the public outreach

LEAP will focus on fostering positive
dialogue and providing accurate
information to enhance the debate
surrounding Loveland energy policy
and help citizens make sound
decisions.  LEAP will provide alternative
views to those wanting to impose an
outright ban on energy development
and hydraulic fracturing within the city.
“The question of energy development
and production in Loveland is a vital
issue and one that citizens should be
discussing,” said Nikkel.  “Our first job is
to listen to our neighbors’ concerns and
then do all we can to make sure the
information in the public domain is
accurate and relevant for Loveland.”
LEAP has filed as an issue committee
with the city of Loveland; LEAP’s
members, including its treasurer, will be
announced in the near future and will
include small business owners, public
safety professionals, civic leaders and
citizens interested in making sure
Loveland continues to be a vibrant,
safe and welcoming community to live
and raise a family.

“Making informed decisions about
energy and energy production is one of
the most important issues facing
Loveland, our state and our country,”
said Jack Cantley, a LEAP steering
committee member.  “We need to
ensure that city officials and voters
understand that the decisions we make
today will impact our community and
economy for many years to come.”  
“Our group is dedicated to helping
move the city forward in a constructive
and thoughtful way,” said Nikkel.  “A
ban on safe, responsible energy
development runs counter to the spirit
of collaboration, and would rob
Loveland of jobs, school funding, tax
revenue and a more vibrant future.  We
will work hard to ensure that every
resident understands the impact that
their energy decisions have on our city
and families.”

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