A Guide to the Colorado 1041 Regulations Requirements, Process, and Compliance

The Colorado 1041 Regulations, a unique set of land use and environmental controls, play a crucial role in shaping the development landscape across the state. This comprehensive guide dives deep into the intricacies of these regulations, providing a clear and accessible framework for understanding their applicability, key provisions, and compliance obligations. From exploring the regulated activities and entities to navigating the permitting process and enforcement mechanisms, this resource offers valuable insights into the 1041 Regulations' impact on various industries and projects. Discover the most recent regulatory developments, anticipate future changes, and access a wealth of additional resources to effectively manage projects in alignment with Colorado's environmental and land use priorities. Whether seeking to grasp the fundamental concepts or master the nuances of this complex regulatory framework, this guide serves as an indispensable tool for successfully navigating the Colorado 1041 Regulations.


Key Details of the Colorado 1041 Regulations

Issuing Agency: Colorado Department of Local Affairs
Year Established: 1974
Last Amended: 2005
Statutory Authority: Areas and Activities of State Interest Act, commonly known as "House Bill 1041" or "H.B. 1041"
Primary Legal Reference: Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 65.1, Sections 101-108

Overview of the Colorado 1041 Regulations

The Colorado 1041 Regulations, established under the Areas and Activities of State Interest Act (H.B. 1041), grant local governments the authority to identify, designate, and regulate areas and activities of state interest within their jurisdictions.[^1] These regulations operate within the broader framework of Colorado's land use and environmental laws, complementing federal regulations such as the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Clean Water Act (CWA).

The primary goal of the 1041 Regulations is to protect Colorado's natural resources, environment, and community values from potential adverse impacts caused by large-scale development projects. The regulations are administered and enforced by local governments, with oversight from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs.

Enacted in 1974, the 1041 Regulations were developed in response to rapid population growth and increased development pressures in Colorado. The regulations have undergone several amendments, with the most recent significant changes occurring in 2005.

The 1041 Regulations achieve their goals by requiring local governments to identify and designate "areas and activities of state interest" within their jurisdictions, and to establish a permitting process for development projects that fall within these designated categories. This approach allows for a balance between local control over land use decisions and the protection of resources and values of statewide importance.

What does the Colorado 1041 Regulations protect?

The Colorado 1041 Regulations protect a wide range of environmental resources and community values from potential adverse impacts caused by large-scale development projects. These resources include:

  1. Natural hazard areas, such as floodplains, geologic hazard areas, and wildfire hazard areas, which are protected from development that could increase risks to public health, safety, and property.[^2]
  2. Historical, archaeological, and paleontological resources, which are protected from destruction or alteration by development activities.[^3]
  3. Wildlife habitats and corridors, which are protected from fragmentation, degradation, and loss of connectivity caused by development.[^4]
  4. Agricultural land and water resources, which are protected from conversion to non-agricultural uses and depletion by development projects.[^5]
  5. Scenic viewsheds and aesthetic values, which are protected from visual impacts and degradation caused by poorly designed or located development.[^6]

The 1041 Regulations achieve this protection by requiring local governments to identify and designate these resources as "areas of state interest" and to establish permitting requirements and review criteria for development projects that may impact them. This process ensures that the potential impacts of development are carefully considered and mitigated, while allowing for responsible economic growth and development in Colorado.

[^1]: Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 65.1, Section 101. [^2]: Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 65.1, Section 104(1)(a-c). [^3]: Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 65.1, Section 104(1)(j). [^4]: Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 65.1, Section 104(1)(e-g). [^5]: Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 65.1, Section 104(1)(d). [^6]: Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 65.1, Section 104(1)(h).


Regulated Activities & Entities

The Colorado 1041 Regulations, named after House Bill 1041 passed in 1974, provide a framework for local governments to regulate activities and development projects that have the potential to significantly impact the environment and local communities. These regulations apply to a wide range of industries and activities, including but not limited to:

  • Mining and mineral extraction
  • Energy production and transmission
  • Water supply and storage projects
  • Solid waste disposal sites
  • Transportation infrastructure
  • Urban development in sensitive areas

The primary goal of the Colorado 1041 Regulations is to ensure that development projects align with local priorities and values while minimizing adverse impacts on the environment, public health, and safety.

The following activities and projects are specifically regulated under the Colorado 1041 Regulations:

  1. Mineral resource areas: Development in areas containing commercial mineral deposits.
  2. Natural hazard areas: Development in areas prone to natural hazards such as floods, wildfires, and geological instability.
  3. Archaeological and historical sites: Development that may impact significant archaeological or historical resources.
  4. Wildlife habitats: Development in areas that serve as critical habitats for wildlife species.
  5. Airports: Expansion or construction of airports and related facilities.
  6. Arterial highways and interchanges: Construction or extension of major roadways and interchanges.
  7. Rapid or mass transit facilities: Development of public transportation infrastructure.
  8. Solid waste disposal sites: Establishment or expansion of landfills and other waste disposal facilities.
  9. Water supply systems: Construction or expansion of water supply infrastructure, including reservoirs, pipelines, and treatment facilities.
  10. Wastewater treatment facilities: Development of wastewater treatment plants and related infrastructure.

These regulated activities are subject to additional oversight and permitting requirements to ensure compliance with local land use plans and environmental protection goals. Local governments have the authority to approve, deny, or conditionally approve permits for projects falling under these categories.

Structure and Key Provisions

24-65.1-101. Legislative Declaration

This section outlines the legislative intent behind the Colorado 1041 Regulations, emphasizing the need to balance development with the protection of the environment and public welfare.

24-65.1-102. General Definitions

This section provides definitions for key terms used throughout the regulation, such as "development," "local government," and "permit."

24-65.1-201. Administration - Delegation

This provision grants local governments the authority to designate and administer areas and activities of state interest, subject to the criteria and procedures outlined in the regulation.

24-65.1-301. Functions of Other State Agencies

This section clarifies the roles and responsibilities of state agencies in relation to the Colorado 1041 Regulations, ensuring coordination between local and state authorities.

24-65.1-401. Permits Required

This provision establishes the requirement for permits for development projects in designated areas or engaging in activities of state interest, as defined by the local government.

24-65.1-501. Permit Authority Established

This section grants local governments the authority to approve, deny, or conditionally approve permits for projects subject to the Colorado 1041 Regulations.

While this overview provides a general understanding of the Colorado 1041 Regulations' structure and key provisions, it is essential for project proponents to consult the full text of the regulation and engage with the relevant local government agencies to obtain project-specific guidance and ensure compliance with all applicable requirements.


Regulatory Standards & Limitations

The Colorado 1041 Regulations establish various standards and limitations to protect the environment and ensure responsible development. These may include emissions limits, performance standards, and other relevant metrics specific to the type of development project and its potential impacts on the environment. The standards are typically implemented through the permitting process, where developers must demonstrate compliance with the applicable requirements to obtain approval for their projects. Enforcement of these standards is carried out by the relevant state agencies, such as the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and the Colorado Department of Natural Resources (DNR), through regular inspections, audits, and response to complaints.

Monitoring, Reporting & Recordkeeping Obligations

Under the Colorado 1041 Regulations, regulated entities are subject to various monitoring, reporting, and recordkeeping requirements to ensure ongoing compliance with the established standards and limitations. These obligations may include regular sampling and testing of emissions, maintaining detailed records of operations and maintenance activities, and submitting periodic compliance reports to the relevant agencies. The specific requirements vary depending on the type of project and the applicable permits, making it crucial for developers and consultants to work closely with the agencies to understand and fulfill these obligations for their specific projects.

Enforcement Actions & Penalties

Violations of the Colorado 1041 Regulations may result in various enforcement actions by the relevant state agencies, such as the CDPHE and the DNR. These actions may include notices of violation, administrative orders, and civil or criminal penalties, depending on the nature and severity of the violation. In some cases, the agencies may also require corrective actions or remediation measures to address the environmental impacts of the violation. To avoid enforcement actions and ensure smooth project execution, it is essential for developers and consultants to prioritize proactive compliance and engage early with the agencies to understand the specific enforcement provisions and penalty structures that may apply to their projects. Consulting the full text of the regulation and maintaining open communication with the agencies throughout the development process can help minimize the risk of violations and penalties.


Recent Developments & Regulatory Outlook

In recent years, the Colorado 1041 Regulations have undergone several significant developments that have shaped the current regulatory landscape. One notable change was the passage of House Bill 19-1261 in 2019, which established new greenhouse gas emission reduction targets for the state and required local governments to consider these targets when making land use decisions under the 1041 Regulations.

Another important development was the Colorado Supreme Court's decision in the case of Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission v. Martinez in January 2019. The court ruled that the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) is required to prioritize public health, safety, and the environment when making decisions related to oil and gas development, including those subject to the 1041 Regulations.

Looking ahead, stakeholders should be aware of potential changes to the 1041 Regulations that may result from ongoing efforts to update the state's land use planning framework. In 2021, the Colorado General Assembly passed Senate Bill 21-266, which directed the Department of Local Affairs (DOLA) to develop a new statewide land use planning grant program and provide technical assistance to local governments. As this program is implemented, it may lead to new guidance or requirements related to the application of the 1041 Regulations.

To stay informed about these and other developments, stakeholders should regularly monitor the websites of relevant state agencies, such as the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and DOLA, and consider joining their mailing lists or attending public meetings and workshops. Engaging with industry associations, such as the Colorado Municipal League or the Colorado Counties, Inc., can also provide valuable insights into the evolving regulatory landscape.

Additional Resources

Full text of the Colorado 1041 Regulations

CDPHE 1041 Regulations Guidance

Colorado Municipal League 1041 Powers Handbook

Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute

Keep up with the latest

A Note to Our Readers: We hope this guide is a valuable resource in helping you better understand the CO 1041 Regulations. However, it's not a substitute for professional advice and doesn't cover every scenario. Always consult with regulatory bodies and professionals for the most current advice and project-specific guidance.