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Colorado governor signs major overhaul of oil, gas rules

Gov. Jared Polis signed the legislation into law on Tuesday afternoon.

DENVER (AP) - Colorado Gov. Jared Polis has signed a bill overhauling oil and gas regulations, shifting the focus from encouraging production to protecting public safety and the environment.

Polis signed SB 19-181 into law on Tuesday afternoon. 

Supporters say it brings much-needed protection to Colorado's booming population and the environment.

Opponents say the law will stifle a major industry and kill jobs. Efforts are already underway to overturn it and recall a lawmaker who voted for it.

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Oil and gas drilling is contentious in Colorado, which ranks fifth nationally in crude oil production and sixth in natural gas.

The industry says it contributes $32 billion annually to the state economy and supports 89,000 jobs.

But fast-growing Colorado communities are spilling into oil and gas areas, sparking complaints about noise, pollution and safety. 

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