Pinon Canyon Expansion Opponents Get Records From Army

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

The Army has turned over 3,000 pages of documents sought by a group opposing expansion of the military's Pinon Canyon training site, ending a lawsuit over the material.

Both sides agreed Thursday to settle the lawsuit.

Michael Gustafson, a lawyer for opponents of the expansion, had filed five requests under the federal Freedom of Information Act asking for documents so they could better comment on a draft environmental study of the proposed expansion that was released in October.

They filed a lawsuit in February alleging the Army failed to comply with the request.

Gustafson said the Army released the 3,000 pages over a period of three or four months and said it has provided everything requested.

Gustafson's clients were reviewing the information, which he said included scientific articles the Army used to prepare the draft environmental study and reports of damage that could be caused at Pinon Canyon.

Many ranchers and landowners fear the Army could use eminent domain to force them to sell land held by their families for generations so it can expand Pinon Canyon from 368 square miles to about 1,000.

Army officials have said they hope to find willing sellers.

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