Douglas County Wins Key Lawsuit Strengthening Local Government Rights on Highway Projects

Douglas County won a very important lawsuit last week clearly affirming that the county has the right to regulate Colorado Department of Transportation highway projects within its boundaries.  State law allows local governments to adopt what are known as “1041 regulations” to govern state projects under certain circumstances.  CDOT argued, however, that they should be exempt from such regulations.  In short, the court found that CDOT does not have exclusive control over all aspects of state highway construction and that Douglas County’s 1041 regulations were legitimate.

What does this mean for Golden?  While the decision specifically addressed Douglas County, we believe that it is likely to apply in Jefferson County as well.  It means that CDOT will probably be required to abide by our regulations pertaining to the site selection of major highways within our community so long as our regulations are reasonable and consistent with the authority granted to us by the state legislature.  This is yet another blow to CDOT and their obsessive insistence that they should get to build whatever they want, wherever they want, and without any regard for the needs of the local affected communities.

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