Proposition 112 (previously known as Initiative 97): Harmful for Mineral Owners

Information on the Initiative
Proposition 112 seeks to ban essentially all new Colorado oil and gas development , which puts our public schools and state at risk for significant financial loss.

Facts about Proposition 112:

*CAMRO has extensively reviewed the impacts of this initiative to the Wattenberg Field. All statistics come from this specific area* 

  • The out-of-state funded initiative seeks to ban essentially all new Colorado oil and gas development.
  • Changes the current setback of 500 ft. from occupied structures, ditches, and subjective areas of interest, to a 2,500 ft. setback. 
  • Colorado public schools are one of the largest beneficiaries of oil and gas leasing.
  • Since 1980, the Land Board's education funds received over $560 million in revenue from oil and gas leases.
  • The Colorado Land Board would be unable to reap the benefits of future innovations.
  • Untapped minerals would have an ultimate recovery of $180 billion dollars over the life of the field.
  • 85 percent of non-federal land would be eliminated from future oil and gas development.
  • Former Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar, Governor John Hickenlooper, and U.S. Rep. Jared Polis oppose the measure. 

Colorado State Land Board Facts about Proposition 112:

The Colorado State Land Board published a study on September 13, 2018. All facts below come directly from that study.

  • The Colorado State Land Board is a constitutionally created state agency that manages a $4.3 billion endowment of assets held in a trust for the intergenerational benefit of Colorado’s K-12 schoolchildren and public institutions. 
  • If Proposition 112 had been implemented three years ago, revenue would have been reduced to $158.5 million, a 60% reduction.
  • If passed, Proposition 112 will eliminate $230.3 million of funding for Colorado’s schools from state trust lands over a three-year period (60 percent).
  • Per Statute, the Colorado State Land Board distributes half of its gross revenue to the Colorado Department of Education’s Building Excellent Schools Today (BEST) program, which provides competitive capital construction grants to public schools. 
  • Since BEST’s inception in 2008, 70% ($635 million) of its funding has come from the Colorado State Land Board. BEST has leveraged these dollars to award $1.7 billion in grants to improve health, safety, and security in 139 school districts for a total of 409 schools serving 180,000 students. 

READ THE REPORT IN ITS' ENTIRETY HERE: Fact Sheet_ Impact of Proposition 112 on Colorado School Funding from State Trust Lands (1).pdf


8/29/18 PRESS RELEASE: Colorado Mineral Owners React to Initiative 97 Approval for Ballot

Denver, Colorado – The Colorado Alliance of Mineral and Royalty Owners was extremely disappointed to hear that Initiative 97 – an effective ban on mineral development in Colorado -made the ballot with 172,834 signatures this afternoon. “Many Coloradans don’t yet understand the effect this kind of law would have on Colorado,” said Neil Ray, president of CAMRO. “Through a recent study and CORA request to the State Land Board, we’ve proven that untapped minerals below Colorado’s Wattenberg Field represent nearly $180 billion dollars of working interest cash flow and $26 billion dollars of royalty payments over the life of the field. This is money that doesn’t just benefit oil and gas companies. It benefits everyday royalty owners, Colorado’s communities, and the entire state.”

Read the full press release here.

PRESS RELEASE: Colorado Schools Face Extreme Financial Hardship if Initiative 97 Curtails Mineral Development

Denver, Colorado – Under a recent Colorado Open Records Act request, the Colorado Alliance of Mineral and Royalty Owners, or CAMRO, found that, since 1980, the Colorado Land Board’s education funds received over $560 million in revenue from oil and gas leases in Colorado’s Wattenberg Field. In the last two years alone, these assets generated $166 million in revenue and interest, which funded K-12 public schools as well as Colorado’s higher education institutions. Although legacy drilling can continue under Initiative 97, the State Land Board wouldn’t reap any of the benefits of future innovations in oil and gas production because no new drilling would be permitted.

“It’s not just mineral owners who have a lot at stake if something like Initiative 97, which would enact 2,500-foot setbacks and eliminate oil and gas development on 85 percent of non-federal land, passes. All of Colorado should be deeply concerned about the impact the initiative would have on our communities and future workforce,” said Neil Ray, president of CAMRO. “Colorado’s schools would face extreme financial hardship. Our schools already have experienced budget cuts. Can they withstand additional hits financially? Our students deserve better.”


PRESS RELEASE: Colorado Association of Mineral and Royalty Owners Study Shows Colorado Could Be on the Hook for $26 Billion if Bans on Energy Development Pass

June 12, 2018

"Denver, Colorado – The Colorado Alliance of Mineral and Royalty Owners (CAMRO) today released a report prepared by Netherland, Sewell, & Associates showing that untapped minerals in Colorado’s Wattenberg Field could have an expected ultimate recovery of nearly $180 billion dollars over the life of the field. Royalties for mineral owners alone would come to $26 billion dollars. This means that the cities and counties in the Wattenberg Field, or the State of Colorado, that enact bans on developing minerals in the Wattenberg Field could be on the hook for over $26 billion from successful takings claims, or just compensation for the public use of private property.

“If the seizure of private property rights in Colorado is codified through the local control initiatives or statewide ballot measures, all property rights throughout the state are under attack. Not only do these estimates represent a staggering value that could be taken without compensation from mineral owners by proposed ballot initiatives, but they represent funds taken from tax coffers that fund schools, roads, and other community services that we all value,” said Neil Ray, president of CAMRO. Our cities, counties, and state simply cannot afford to compensate mineral owners for their property.”

READ MORE (Press Release)

View all media coverage: HERE.

Colorado ballot measure on oil and gas setbacks gains a list of opponents

September 13, 2018 by Joey Bunch

"A nearly half-mile setback has been called virtual ban based on where deposits are located, say those who have opposed the measure backed by Colorado Rising. That list includes Democratic gubernatorial nominee Jared Polis. Republican nominee Walker Stapleton, an unabashed supporter of the oil and gas association, also opposes the proposition."



  Increasing the Oil and Gas Setback Requirement to 2,500-feet in Colorado
**The parties involved in conducting this study include the Colorado Association of REALTORS®, the Colorado Bankers Association, Colorado Concern, Common Sense Policy Roundtable and Denver South Economic Development Partnership.**

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