2017 Colorado Revised Statutes
Title 7 - Corporations and Associations
Article 45 - Toll Road Companies
§ 7-45-106. Environmental standards and review
(1) (a) Before constructing and operating a toll road or toll highway or any other element of a toll road or toll highway project, a toll road or toll highway company shall prepare, at its own expense, environmental documentation that complies with the environmental stewardship guide approved by the transportation commission in May 2005. The documentation shall describe the environmental, social, and economic effects of the proposed toll road, toll highway, or project, identify feasible measures to avoid or otherwise mitigate the adverse effects of the project, and estimate the financial costs to implement mitigation measures that are included in the project or have been previously recommended in writing by the commenting state agencies or an affected metropolitan planning organization or regional transportation commission and comply with federal and state air and water quality standards, approvals, and permits.
(b) (I) A toll road or toll highway company shall not begin work on environmental documentation required by paragraph (a) of this subsection (1) until it has obtained preliminary approval from the executive director of the department of transportation that the scope of the planned environmental documentation is consistent with the environmental stewardship guide issued by the department in May 2005 and all other requirements of paragraph (a) of this subsection (1).
(II) A toll road or toll highway company shall provide a copy of any draft environmental documentation it prepares as required by paragraph (a) of this subsection (1) to the commenting state agencies, affected metropolitan planning organizations and regional planning commissions, and affected local governments. The toll road or toll highway company shall also make the draft environmental documentation electronically or otherwise available to the public. The commenting state agencies may, within sixty days, provide the toll road or toll highway company and affected metropolitan planning organizations and regional planning commissions with their analyses of the adequacy of the environmental documentation and shall make the analyses available to the public.
(III) Each of the commenting agencies may charge a fee to a toll road or toll highway company to cover the reasonable expenses that it incurred in fulfilling the requirements of subparagraphs (I) and (II), as applicable, of this paragraph (b).
(IV) A toll road or toll highway company shall prepare final environmental documentation that addresses comments received from the commenting state agencies, metropolitan planning organizations, regional planning commissions, and other interested parties. The final environmental documentation shall be made available to the department of transportation and the public at least thirty days prior to publication of any notice of hearing scheduled by the commission pursuant to subsection (2) of this section.
(2) The transportation commission created in section 43-1-106, C.R.S., shall not revise the comprehensive statewide transportation plan prepared pursuant to section 43-1-1103 (5), C.R.S., to include a toll road, toll highway, or toll road or toll highway project subject to the requirements of this section unless the commission, after holding a public hearing, determines that:
(a) The requirements of section 7-45-105 and subsection (1) of this section have been met;
(b) The toll road, toll highway, or project is:
(I) Necessary to meet the transportation needs of the state;
(II) Consistent with section 43-1-1103 (5), C.R.S., and the policies of the transportation commission;
(III) Consistent with 23 U.S.C. sec. 135; and
(IV) In the public interest;
(c) The toll road, toll highway, or project sponsor has established a reserve fund, performance bond, or other appropriate mechanism to ensure full payment of the costs of compliance with federal and state air and water quality standards, other federal and state environmental requirements, and mitigation measures included in the toll road, toll highway, or project or required by the transportation commission, a metropolitan planning organization, or a regional planning commission; and
(d) The toll road, toll highway, or project sponsor has entered into enforceable agreements with the department of transportation, or agreements with affected local governments that are acceptable to the transportation commission, to ensure that mitigation measures included in the project or required by the transportation commission, a metropolitan planning organization, or a regional planning commission will be implemented.
(3) The transportation commission may condition its addition of a toll road or toll highway or a toll road or toll highway project into the comprehensive statewide transportation plan upon additional mitigation measures if the commission determines that the mitigation measures are in the best overall public interest taking into consideration:
(a) The need for fast, safe, and efficient transportation;
(b) Public services;
(c) The costs of eliminating or minimizing the adverse effects for which the mitigation measures are proposed;
(d) Environmental, social, and economic values; and
(e) The financial feasibility of the toll road, toll highway, or project.