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As commission candidate urges countywide mask order, commissioner highlights opposition to the idea in western Garfield County

A candidate for Garfield County commissioner says the current commissioners are putting politics over public health by not requiring people to wear face coverings while in public.

Leslie Robinson of Rifle is running for the District 3 Board of County Commissioners seat as a Democrat in November against incumbent Republican Mike Samson.

She said during comments via video conference before the county commissioners on Monday that Garfield County should follow the lead of neighboring resort counties in requiring masks be worn in public places.

Leslie Robinson, candidate for Garfield County commissioner.

“Don’t let the politics of a few dictate COVID health and safety decisions that will protect the many,” Robinson said.

Garfield County should enact a temporary order requiring face coverings while in places of business and where social distancing is not possible, same as the municipalities of Glenwood Springs and Carbondale, she said.

Face coverings should not be a political issue, Robinson said, adding “it’s time to believe in the medical science behind the use of masks to slow down contagion.”

Reached on Tuesday, Samson said the vast majority of constituents who have contacted him are opposed to a mask requirement, though people on the eastern end of the county are more supportive, he said.

“If you look at the stats, the majority of Covid cases appear to be in the eastern end of the county,” Samson said. That includes Glenwood Springs and Carbondale, which do require masks within their city limits, and New Castle, which does not. Combined, those communities account for 65% of the county’s cases since the outbreak began in early March.

Garfield County Commissioner Mike Samson.
Alex Zorn / Citizen Telegram

Personally, Samson said he does wear a mask when entering businesses, especially busier ones such as City Market or Walmart.

“One of the major reasons why I do it is because a lot of people know who I am, and it’s good for me to set an example for others,” Samson said. “People need to use good judgment and common sense, and if you’re going to be in a situation where you’re close to other people, it’s a way to protect them and yourself.”

Robinson’s comments also elicited a response during the Monday meeting from District 1 Commissioner Tom Jankovsky, who is not up for reelection this year.

He also said the constituent comments he’s heard, especially in the Rifle area, are “three-to-one against” requiring masks.

Garfield County Commissioner Tom Jankovsky
Chelsea Self / Post Independent

“Rifle, Parachute, Silt … none of those city councils have come to us asking for (a mask requirement), and any of them could have done it on their own,” Jankovsky said.

Jankovsky acknowledged public health suggestions that face masks could reduce the virus spread by 5% to 10%. But hospital capacity in the county and statewide is a better benchmark to make decisions, rather than the number of new cases, he said.

“Our hospitals are not at capacity,” he said, adding later in direct response to Robinson, “the individuals you’re trying to represent are opposed to face masks.”

Although county commissioners represent certain districts within the county, they are elected countywide by voters from Carbondale to Parachute.

Robinson also noted that a disproportionate number of those who have contracted COVID-19 in Garfield County, 60%, are Latino. That percentage has increased from 49% in early June.

“I wonder what more can the county be doing to reach out to that community to educate and stop this contagion among our most vulnerable populations,” she said.

Garfield County Public Health Director Yvonne Long acknowledged in her regular report to the county commissioners Monday that the recent surge in cases among Latinos is a concern. That likely can be attributed to virus spread in workplaces, especially within the tourism and service industries, as well as construction job sites and even the practice of carpooling to work.

While carpooling is a good thing to do during normal times, Long said, “this is maybe not the time to do that.”

jstroud@postindependent.com

Editor’s note: This story has been updated from the original version with comments from Garfield County Commissioner Mike Samson.

How removing the Gallagher Amendment could work in Glenwood Springs

Voters could decide in November whether longstanding statewide restrictions on property tax ratios should be removed.

As part of a bipartisan effort, both state and local officials are planning to add questions to the November ballot that would effectively remove the Gallagher Amendment from Colorado’s constitution.

Added in 1982, the amendment set out to ensure homeowner’s wouldn’t bear the brunt of funding government. But as the housing market boomed and home values skyrocketed, businesses were left to pick up the tab, said Karl Hanlon, Glenwood Springs city attorney.

Prior to the Gallagher amendment, when residential properties accounted for about 45 percent of the state’s total taxable property values, houses were taxed at about 30 percent of their assessed value.

The amendment mandated that local and state governments couldn’t collect more than 45 percent of their property tax revenues from residential valuations, according to information provided by Building a Better Colorado.

As residential properties’ taxable values increased, now accounting for about 80 percent of the state’s total taxable property values, the amount a local government could tax a residential property decreased to ensure the 45 percent ratio was maintained, dubbed a ratcheting effect, Hanlon said. 

To determine how to tax a property, a local government multiplies the property’s base market value by an assessment rate dictated by the state constitution and modified by the Gallagher Amendment.

Since 1982, residential property tax assessment rates have shrunk from around 30 percent to about 7 percent in 2020. Meanwhile, all non-residential properties are taxed at 29 percent of assessed value as they have been since the Gallagher Amendment was approved.

Reduction of services

Property taxes are collected locally and spent locally, Building a Better Colorado reported. Colorado has not imposed a property level tax since 1964.

The funds primarily go to school districts, but also fund special districts — such as fire and library districts — cities, counties and junior colleges.

Analysts predict the ratcheting effect in 2021 could drop residential property tax rates down to about 6 percent, which would result in the city of Glenwood Springs losing about $131,000 in revenue from property tax mills and could significantly impact the city’s fire districts, Mayor Jonathan Godes said.

“We look at this as a potential cut of $131,000, which is essentially two less people available to fight fires,” Godes said.

The revenue problem is compounded by decreasing sales tax revenue as a result of the pandemic, Hanlon said. School districts rely heavily on property tax revenues, but the city’s fire districts can pull money from the general fund, which is fed — in part — by sales taxes. 

With both sources of revenue declining, Godes said maintaining the city’s current level of services would be challenging.

In addition to some state legislators’ initiative to “de-Gallagherize” Colorado’s constitution, the Glenwood Springs City Council approved a motion, July 2, to craft language for additional questions on the ballot that would further de-Gallagherize the city’s revenue in the future. 

Although the city’s ballot questions have not been released yet, Hanlon explained the intention of the questions will be to ensure the tax rate for assessed residential value does not drop below its current rate of about 7 percent.

Hanlon said property tax percentages would not increase as a result of the city’s ballot question.

Godes added, “The goal is to not have our most basic services — health and safety — see a reduction in revenue.” 

The city’s ballot question is separate from the state’s question, though both ask the voters to commit to similar changes. 

If the Legislature’s ballot question failed, Hanlon said the city’s ballot question would insulate the city’s revenues from further ratchet effects. But the question is still important if voters approve Legislatures’ de-Gallagher effort, he added.

“It allows us to maintain revenues where they’re at, which under the proposed repeal of Gallagher … there could, frankly, be a reduction (of residential property tax percentages),” Hanlon said. “Keeping in mind that with the Tax Payer’s Bill of Rights Amendment (TABOR) in place, the repeal of Gallagher does not mean a local jurisdiction could increase the taxes on your property without going to an election to make that happen.”

Opposition

While most of the City Council approved the motion for city staff to craft de-Gallagher questions for the November ballot, Councilor Tony Hershey voted against the motion.

“I think it’s duplicative to have it on a local ballot,” Hershey said. “Why not see what happens on the state ballot first.”  

In general, Hershey said he does not support either the state or the city’s movement to de-Gallagherize. The potential hike in residential property taxes — though any increase would need voter approval as per the TABOR amendment — is too much, he explained. 

“The TABOR amendment is next,” Hershey speculated. “The government will spend as much money you give them.”

Instead of additional questions to remove or hamper the Gallagher Amendment, Hershey said he’d rather see school and fire districts directly ask voters for more money by way of additional property mill increases, which would apply to businesses as well further increasing the tax burden on commercial properties while marginally increasing residential taxes.

“I’m opposed to (removing) Gallagher, because I think the government spends too much money and not in the right way,” Hershey.

ifredregill@postindependent.com

Election results update: The latest tallies in key state and regional primary races

Though the margins of victory in contested Colorado Primary Election races that were decided Tuesday haven’t changed substantially, the number of votes counted continue to change as final returns were still being reported from some counties.

Here is the latest tally, as of Thursday morning, in the key area and statewide political party primaries, according to results posted to the Colorado Secretary of State Office’s website.

U.S. SENATE Democratic Primary

John Hickenlooper — 59% (576,757); Andrew Romanoff — 41% (403,944)

U.S. SENATE Libertarian Primary

Raymon Anthony Doane — 63% (3,965); Gaylon Kent — 37% (2,359)

3rd Congressional District Republican Primary

Lauren Boebert — 55% (58,169); Scott Tipton — 45% (48,408)

3rd Congressional District Democratic Primary

Diane Mitsch Bush — 61% (64,486); James Iacino — 39% (40,618)

Colorado Senate District 8 Republican Primary

Bob Rankin — 63% (11,629); Debra Irvine — 37% (6,750)

Colorado Senate District 8 Democratic Primary

Karl Hanlon — 56% (10,596); Arn Menconi — 44% (8,245)

John Hickenlooper wins Colorado’s Democratic Senate primary

DENVER (AP) — Former Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper won the Democratic nomination Tuesday to face Republican Sen. Cory Gardner in November, overcoming a series of stumbles and beating back a challenge from his left.

Hickenlooper’s defeat of former Colorado House Speaker Andrew Romanoff was the second win by a centrist Democrat in a Senate primary Tuesday, after a late vote count from last week’s Kentucky Senate primary gave Amy McGrath the win over State Rep. Charles Booker. Romanoff is a former moderate who turned himself into a populist, running against the moderate favorite of the Democratic establishment and promising a Green New Deal and single-payer health care.

But he could not overcome both Hickenlooper’s immense financial edge — the former governor out-raised Romanoff by about 7-to-1 — and his deep name ID and reservoir of goodwill among voters stemming from two terms in the governor’s mansion.

That’s why Senate Democrats recruited Hickenlooper, 68, to take on Gardner, widely seen as the most vulnerable Republican in the Senate. Democrats need to net three seats in November to win control of the chamber if they win the White House, and they see Colorado as their most promising opportunity. Senate Democrats convinced Hickenlooper to run as his ill-fated bid for the Democratic presidential nomination fizzled last summer.

Hickenlooper’s relatively easy win against Romanoff, Democrats argue, showed his resilience as a candidate whom Coloradans trust as a gaffe-prone, but authentic, leader.

“I’ve never lost an election in this state and I don’t intend to lose this one,” Hickenlooper said Tuesday night as he previewed his line of attack against Gardner: “We know what Donald Trump told us himself: Cory Gardner is with him 100% of the time.”

In an interview, Gardner previewed how he intends to fight back. In contrast to Hickenlooper’s attempt to link the election to national issues like Trump, the coronavirus pandemic and collapsing economy, Gardner rattled off some of his recent accomplishments — luring the headquarters of U.S. Space Command and the Bureau of Land Management to Colorado and passing a sweeping public lands bill.

“I’m with the people of Colorado 100% of the time,” Gardner, 45, said.

The Republican Senator also called Hickenlooper “the most corrupt governor in the history of Colorado.” It was a reference to the state ethics commission finding in early June that Hickenlooper violated the state’s ethics law by failing to reimburse for a private plane flight and limousine ride while he was governor. Hickenlooper had refused to testify during a virtual hearing, insisting on an in-person one, earning a contempt citation from the nonpartisan commission.

The ethics case was part of a miserable final stretch for Hickenlooper in June. Amid the protests over police violence against Black people, Hickenlooper garbled the meaning of the slogan “Black Lives Matter.” The following week, an African American Romanoff supporter tweeted a 6-year-old video of Hickenlooper jokingly comparing politicians to slaves being whipped to row “an ancient slave ship.”

The combination of the gaffes and setbacks was enough to lure Republicans to launch millions of dollars in ads attacking Hickenlooper. Democrats responded with defensive ads, and Romanoff then jumped in and added his own attack ad versus the former governor.

Colorado’s Democratic establishment, from Gov. Jared Polis to Sen. Michael Bennet, condemned Romanoff for the move. Then, days later, a big-money group that will not disclose its donors launched a $1 million ad campaign slamming Romanoff for spearheading an anti-illegal immigrant bill in 2006. Romanoff has since apologized for the bill.

Republicans always expected Hickenlooper to win the primary, though many rooted for Romanoff and the GOP hopes that Hickenlooper has been banged up enough to give Gardner a chance in the November election.

But Colorado Democrats are eager to oust Gardner. Romanoff quickly called Hickenlooper to congratulate him on the victory after polls closed Tuesday evening. “For all the differences that we had, and there were many in this race, I am equally committed to making sure Cory Gardner is a one-term senator,” Romanoff told supporters during a virtual victory party on Zoom.

No Republican has won a statewide election in Colorado since 2014, when Gardner won by less than 2 percentage points in a strong year for Republicans. Hickenlooper was reelected as governor that year by a wider margin.

Rifle’s Lauren Boebert upsets incumbent Scott Tipton in GOP primary for 3rd Congressional District

Rifle restaurant owner and staunch gun rights advocate Lauren Boebert pulled off the upset of the night in Tuesday’s Colorado Primary elections, defeating five-term incumbent U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton for the party’s nomination in the 3rd Congressional District.

“Our freedom and our Constitutional rights are on the ballot this November and Republicans just sent a loud and clear message that they want me there to fight for them,” Boebert said in a statement issued from her campaign watch party in Grand Junction Tuesday night.

As of late Tuesday night, Boebert had earned 54% of the vote among Republican voters throughout the sprawling 3rd Congressional District, which includes the population centers of Grand Junction, Pueblo, Montrose and Durango.

Tipton held a slight advantage over Boebert in her home county of Garfield, but it was a virtual dead heat with Tipton carrying 50.1% to Boebert’s 49.9%.

Boebert’s win attracted the attention of President Donald Trump, who congratulated her on Twitter.

Boebert is the owner of Shooters Grill in Rifle, which has become widely known for its open-carrying waitstaff.

“I joined this race because thousands of ordinary Americans just like me are fed-up with politics as usual,” she said. “Colorado deserves a fighter who will stand up for freedom, who believes in America and who is willing to take on all the left-wing lunatics who are trying so hard to ruin our country.” 

Shortly after 9 p.m. Tuesday, Tipton’s campaign conceded the race.

“(Third) District Republicans have decided who they want to run against the Democrats this November,” Tipton said in a statement. “I want to congratulate Lauren Boebert and wish her and her supporters well.”

Boebert will face Diane Mitsch Bush in the Nov. 3 election. Mitsch Bush, a former Routt County commissioner and state representative from Steamboat Springs who lost to Tipton in the 2018 general election, was the winner of the Democratic primary Tuesday over businessman James Iacino of Ridgway.

“It surprises me a little, but I thought she might get a lot of traction in this race because of her base,” Mitsch Bush said of Boebert’s upset win. “I was on a panel with her once, and she really stays on message and her beliefs are very strong and she is very articulate … I look forward to discussing issues with her and facing her in the general election.”

Mitsch Bush said she will run on her record as a state legislator who was able to work across party lines.

“I run on telling the truth, and I’m always transparent,” Mitsch Bush said.

Boebert called her run for Congress “a battle for the heart and soul of our country. I’m going to win this November because freedom is a great motivator,” she said.

Last fall, Boebert traveled to Denver to confront then-Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke regarding his stance on gun control, saying, “Hell no, you won’t take our guns.”

Recently, during the COVID-19 shutdown in Garfield County, Boebert defied Governor Jared Polis’ public health order and re-opened Shooters Grill to in-restaurant dining under CDC safety guidelines. 

Boebert noted in her statement that she was raised in a Democrat household and became a “self-taught Republican conservative.” She has never held public office.

Covering over 52,000 square miles, Colorado’s 3rd District is one of the largest in the country, stretching from Grand Junction to Pueblo and Cortez to Steamboat Springs.

Tipton won the U.S. House seat in 2010, beating incumbent John Salazar (50.1% to 45.8%). He’s won re-election in 2012 (beating Sal Pace), 2014 (versus Abel Tapia), 2016 (beating former state Sen. Gail Schwartz) and in 2018 against Diane Mitsch Bush (51.5% to 43.6%).

Tipton becomes the fifth House incumbent to lose renomination in 2020.

jstroud@postindependent.com

Incumbent Rankin wins GOP primary for Senate District 8 seat

Incumbent Republican state Sen. Bob Rankin of Carbondale is the likely winner in GOP primary to run for the Colorado Senate District 8 seat in November over challenger Debra Irvine of Breckenridge.

With 17,472 votes counted in the seven-county district as of 9:30 p.m., Rankin held a commanding 63% to 37% advantage over Irvine.

The district includes Garfield, Rio Blanco, Moffat, Routt, Grand, Jackson and Summit counties.

Rankin said he looks forward to continuing his work on behalf of residents in his district.

“I just would like to thank the people who supported me,” he said. “This was a strange election, and I was not able to campaign as much because I was busy on the budget committee, and then the virus.

“I have unfinished business and want to get to work on the recovery of our state. We’re in crisis, and I think I can help small businesses recover and get back to work.”

Rankin was the former three-term state representative for House District 57, including his home county of Garfield, plus Rio Blanco and Moffat counties, from 2013 through 2018.

He was appointed to the vacant District 8 Senate seat in January 2019 after he had just been elected to a fourth term in the House, replacing former Republican Sen. Randy Baumgardner, who resigned. This will be Rankin’s first run for the Senate seat.

Irvine was a 2014 Republican candidate for the District 61 Colorado House of Representatives seat. She ran unsuccessfully for the same seat in 2012.

As votes were still being tallied Tuesday night, Rankin was winning his home county of Garfield with 74% of the primary vote, while Irvine held a razor-thin 51% advantage in her home county of Summit.

Rankin will likely face Carbondale rancher and Glenwood Springs water and municipal attorney Karl Hanlon, in the November general election.

Hanlon had a large lead in the Democratic primary Tuesday night over former Eagle County commissioner Arn Menconi, also of Carbondale, with 57% of the vote as of 9:30 p.m.

jstroud@postindependent.com

Karl Hanlon wins Senate District 8 Democratic primary

Karl Hanlon easily defeated opponent Arn Menconi to win the Democratic primary for Senate District 8 with 57% of the vote as of 9 p.m. Tuesday. 

Hanlon announced his run in early March for the Senate District 8 seat, which represents Garfield, Grand, Jackson, Moffat, Rio Blanco, Routt and Summit counties in the Colorado Legislature. Hanlon is an attorney and rancher who resides in Carbondale with his family. He is active in several District 8 communities, serving as a legal representative for the town of Silverthorne, the city of Glenwood Springs, the Aspen Fire Protection District and as general council for the Grand Junction Regional Airport.

In Garfield County, Hanlon received 3,935 votes to Menconi’s 2,326. Hanlon won every county except for Summit.

On Tuesday night, Hanlon said his next move is to get out and talk with people around the district, although the pandemic means that will happen  in smaller groups. Hanlon said he enjoys going out and hearing people’s stories and connecting with people where they’re at. 

“Something that most politicians don’t do is really understand where people are coming from and where they’re at in their lives,” Hanlon said. “And going out and having those conversations, I think, is the most rewarding part of this.”

Hanlon said he wants to focus on looking forward and that he believes rural Colorado has been told to look back for too long. He said he thinks the diversity of opinions and thoughts is “what makes rural Colorado so great” and that he hopes to be inclusive in approaching people’s different viewpoints. 

When asked what he would do first if elected, Hanlon said the current economic situation COVID-19 has created has highlighted that there needs to be reform to the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights amendment, which he said he would work to tackle. He said the revenue cap needs to be changed as it has decreased the amount of available reserves that could have helped with the crisis. 

Colorado voters soundly rejected a ballot measure in November 2019 that would have let the state keep any tax revenue above the state spending cap — money that the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights currently guarantees as refunds to taxpayers. Democrats said it wasn’t a tax increase while Republicans argued it effectively was.

An opinion piece Hanlon submitted to the Summit Daily in June discussed the hardships rural Colorado communities and businesses are facing from the COVID-19 shutdown and subsequent revenue losses. Hanlon pointed out how towns and counties have worked to help residents through grants and funding, and he listed some of the funding provided at the federal level. 

“While this is a start, to be blunt, it is not enough,” Hanlon said in the submitted piece. “What we need in our state senator is not someone rooted in the past, beholden to special interests and blind to creative solutions from tax reform to economic development. What we need is someone with deep roots in this district, real experience on the ground and the vision to see that the crisis we face today will not be solved by looking back, but instead by looking forward.”

Hanlon’s opponent Menconi carried only Summit County with 51% of the vote.

“I would like to thank all my supporters for the incredible movement we built in 2020,” Menconi wrote in a text message. “It’s clear the future wants the green new deal. Being outspent 4-to-1 in dollars, I am grateful for my volunteer team who delivered the difference with their values and passion for climate and social justice!”

Menconi declined to discuss the loss over the phone.

Hanlon will go on to face Republican incumbent Bob Rankin in the November general election. 

“I’m really excited to be the nominee for the party and looking forward to what’s going to be a tough campaign, but I think one (where) there are a lot of really important issues out there to talk about in SD8 that aren’t getting addressed, and I think that’s going to become clear over the course of the campaign,” Hanlon said.

Diane Mitsch Bush wins CD3 Democratic primary over newcomer James Iacino

In her second effort to win Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District seat, Diane Mitsch Bush beat political newcomer James Iacino in Tuesday’s Democratic primary.

As of 10 p.m., Mitsch Bush held 61.25% (60,784) of the 99,241 votes counted, according to the Secretary of State’s results.

She led in Garfield County with 4,397 (67.15%) to Iacino’s 2,151 votes (32.85%) as of the 10 p.m.

Bush said Iacino called her at about 8 p.m. to concede and congratulate her on the win.

“He very kindly called and conceded very graciously and gave me his strong support, ” Mitsch Bush said Tuesday night. “He was clear that we are going to work together to win this seat for the people. … I’m honored and humbled so many people voted for me.”

Mitsch Bush, 70, lost to Rep. Scott Tipton in 2018 by a 51.5% to 43.6% margin.

However, Tipton lost the Republican primary to political newcomer Lauren Boebert of Rifle. Boebert had 54.3% of the votes counted to Tipton’s 45.7% overall as of 9:16 p.m.; Tipton is ahead in Pitkin County with 544 votes to Boebert’s 279. He conceded the race to Boebert just after 9 p.m.

“It surprises me a little but I thought she might get a lot of traction in this race because of her base,” Mitsch Bush said of Boebert leading Tipton. “I was on a panel with her once, and she really stays on message and her beliefs are very strong and she is very articulate.”

Mitsch Bush, who moved to Routt County in 1976, was a two-term Routt County Commissioner, then represented Routt County and Eagle County in the State House of Representatives for three terms (2013-2017). While in the House she was chair of the Transportation and Energy Committee and vice chair of Agriculture and Natural Resources. She also served on the Joint House-Senate Water Committee for five years.

She was a tenured professor at Colorado State University and she also worked on the faculty at Colorado Mountain College, where she taught and did research for 11 years. 

Iacino, 37, entered the race in October 2019 and stepped down as the CEO of Seattle Fish Co., which is his family’s business based in Denver and has an office in Montrose. He was running for his first office and now lives in Ridgway with his wife and two children.

“Last October when we launched this campaign, we had one goal in mind: to beat Scott Tipton and bring real representation back to western and southern Colorado,” Iacino said in a statement released Tuesday evening. “Our economy is in shambles, our environment is under extreme stress, and the ACA remains in a constant state of danger. I’m proud to stand with Diane Mitsch Bush because my priorities are the same as they were then, and I know she will fight for what is right and bring a real voice back to the 3rd District.”

He won the Democratic Party’s CD3 Assembly in April with 49 percent of the vote, just ahead of Mitsch Bush at 47 percent. Iacino had the endorsement of state Democrats including former Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar, Attorney General Phil Weiser, former CD3 Congressman John Salazar and former State Senator Gail Schwartz.

Tipton won the U.S. House seat in 2010, beating incumbent John Salazar (50.1% to 45.8%). He’s won re-election in 2012 (beating Sal Pace), 2014 (versus Abel Tapia), 2016 (beating Schwartz) and in 2018 against Mitsch Bush (51.5% to 43.6%).

Covering 29 counties over 52,000 square miles, Colorado’s 3rd District is one of the largest in the country. It stretches from Grand Junction to Pueblo and Cortez to Steamboat Springs.

dkrause@aspentimes.com

Shooters Grill owner Lauren Boebert wins GOP nomination for CD3, beating out incumbent Scott Tipton

Rifle business owner and staunch Second Amendment advocate Lauren Boebert has won the race against incumbent Scott Tipton in the GOP primary for Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District.

Shortly after 9 p.m. Tuesday, Tipton’s campaign conceded shortly after 9 p.m. Tuesday.

“3rd District Republicans have decided who they want to run against the Democrats this November,” Tipton said in a statement. “I want to congratulate Lauren Boebert and wish her and her supporters well.”

Covering over 52,000 square miles, Colorado’s 3rd District covers 52,000 square miles and is one of the largest in the country. It stretches from Grand Junction to Pueblo and Cortez to Steamboat Springs.

Tipton won the U.S. House seat in 2010, beating incumbent John Salazar (50.1% to 45.8%). He’s won re-election in 2012 (beating Sal Pace), 2014 (versus Abel Tapia), 2016 (beating Schwartz) and in 2018 against Mitsch Bush (51.5% to 43.6%).

This is a developing story. Check back later for more updates.

Voting in Colorado Primary Election concludes Tuesday

Balloting continues today and up until 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Colorado Primary Election, in which candidates for state and national offices are being nominated to advance to the November General Election.

Ballots must be returned in person at this point at one of six ballot drop-off locations in Garfield County or one of two Voter Service and Polling Centers in Glenwood Springs and Rifle.

Garfield County ballot drop-off sites

Glenwood Springs
Garfield County Courthouse – East Entrance
109 Eighth Street
Monday and Tuesday, 7:30 a.m.–5 p.m. (24-hour ballot box located on the Eighth Street side of the Courthouse)

Rifle
Garfield County Admin Building
195 W 14th St. Building D
Monday and Tuesday, 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.

Carbondale
Town Hall
511 Colorado Ave.
Tuesday, 7 a.m–7 p.m.

Bipartisan teams of election judges will be at the following sites:

Silt
Town Hall
231 N. 7th St.
Monday – 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Election Day, Tuesday – 7 am–7 pm

Parachute
Town Hall
222 Grand Valley Way
Monday until 5 p.m.
Election Day, Tuesday – 7 a.m.–7 p.m.

New Castle
Town Hall
450 W Main St.
Monday until 5 p.m.
Election Day, Tuesday – 7 a.m.–7 p.m.

Garfield County Voter Service and Polling Centers

Garfield County Administration Building, 108 Eighth St., Glenwood Springs — Monday until 5 p.m., Election Day 7 a.m.–7 p.m.

Carbondale Town Hall, 511 Colorado Ave., Election Day 7 a.m–7 p.m.

Rifle County Administration Building, 195 W. 14th St., Rifle — Monday until 5 p.m., Election Day 7 a.m.–7 p.m.

On the Republican ballot are primary races between incumbent U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton and challenger Lauren Boebert for the 3rd Congressional District nomination, and between incumbent state Sen. Bob Rankin and challenger Debra Irvine, for the Senate District 8 nomination.

Those voting the Democratic ballot have a choice between Diane Mitsch Bush and James Iacino for the 3rd Congressional District nomination, and between Karl Hanlon and Arn Menconi for the SD 8 nomination.

In the lone statewide primary race, Democrats will also be deciding between former Gov. John Hickenlooper and former state Rep. Andrew Romanoff for the nomination to face Republican incumbent U.S. Sen. Cory Gardner in November.

Registered Libertarian voters are also deciding between their two U.S. Senate candidates, Gaylon Kent and Raymon Anthony Doane.

Several other state and local candidates are uncontested in the primary election.

Unaffiliated voters who received both a Republican and Democratic ballot in the mail can cast one or the other, but not both.

jstroud@postindependent.com