- Associated Press - Saturday, June 21, 2014

DENVER (AP) - The four Republican gubernatorial contenders in Tuesday’s primary answer questions about what they’d do if elected. Here, they talk about how fracking.

Each responded in writing. Answers were edited for space reasons.

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Q: The debate over how much control local governments should have over oil and gas development is a big topic right now. What would you do as governor on this issue?

Former U.S. Rep. Bob Beauprez: For the last seven years, two Democrat governors have continually tightened the screws on an industry that really has the power to uplift and empower the entire state of Colorado. This dream we’ve had nearly all my life of energy independence, it’s finally a real possibility - if we don’t screw it up.

Immediately, I will take a common sense look at all regulations impacting energy production in Colorado. If any don’t support growth, opportunity, jobs and a clean environment, I will work to reverse them.

We will continue to make sure these resources are extracted safely and to the letter of the law, but we’ll also make sure we don’t strangle an industry that can really do the most to restore Colorado to its greatness.

Secretary of State Scott Gessler: The current regulatory framework works well, and the state has proven its ability to protect its residents’ health and safety. Most importantly, we need to provide a stable framework for the industry to succeed.

Former state Sen. Mike Kopp: Colorado has some of the toughest oil and gas regulations in the country. As an ardent defender of private property rights, I will fight against any attempt to take away someone’s livelihood in the name of “local control.” Outright bans on hydraulic fracturing will not only cost our state and local communities lost revenue, they will also result in fewer jobs and higher energy costs for all of us.

As governor I will lead a common sense regulatory approach that honors property rights, keeps our families from harm and safely harnesses the vast, cheap, reliable energy source that oil and gas represent for us in Colorado.

Former U.S. Rep. Tom Tancredo: I will provide leadership, which the current administration has not done. As with Amendment 64, I support the concept of local control. However, in the event a local government is able to and does ban fracking or other oil and gas activities, that government should not share in or benefit from revenues generated from said activities in other parts of the state.

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