At 9 a.m. on Monday, March 31, 2014, the Mesa County Commissioners will consider a Resolution that reaffirms the County’s authority to control and protect free use of the network of roads and rights of way in Mesa County, including over certain roads managed by the US Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management.
The free use of the public roads in Mesa County is essential to ‘protect the health, safety, welfare and commercial opportunities of all people within the County.’ “Access to roads and rights of way on public lands preserves our County’s heritage of utilizing our public lands,” said John Justman, Chairman of the Board of Commissioners, “and those lands should be available for everyone, now and in the future.”
Community members asserting the right to utilize road rights-of-way often refer to the issue as “RS2477”, which is shorthand for the United States Revised Statute 2477 (R.S. 2477), 43 U.S.C. 932.The State, County and municipalities also have jurisdiction under Colorado Statutes, Article 2, Title 43.
“Our Board received a petition last year signed by over 1,800 constituents asking us to keep access on our public lands open to the public. By reaffirming our County’s authority over these roads and rights of way, we can help protect access,” stated Commissioner Rose Pugliese.
The proposed Resolution states that ‘nothing in this Resolution shall limit the authority of the Board of County Commissioners to modify, vacate, abandon, or expand the legal rights of way assertions under federal law including R.S. 2477’ and calls for ‘development of federal legislation to improve the procedure for respecting grants of right of way under R.S. 2477.’
Full text of the proposed Resolution is available with the hearing agenda and supporting documentation. See www.mesacounty.us/commissioners/ select Agendas then download the hearing binder for March 31, 2014. This item is set for "individual consideration."