Reapportionment makes slight changes for Garfield County |

Reapportionment makes slight changes for Garfield County

John Colson
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado

Garfield County will be wholly represented by Colorado Senate District 8, and will be a little less bifurcated by Colorado House Districts 61 and 57 under a final legislative plan proposed this week by the 2011 Colorado Reapportionment Commission.

The plans, which have been the subject of fierce infighting in the Colorado Assembly as well as a lengthy series of public hearings around the state, now go to the Colorado Supreme Court for either ratification or modification.

The commission reported its final proposed maps to the public late on Monday, with all but a few Republican members voting in favor of maps drawn by unaffiliated voter Mario Carerra, a Spanish-language TV executive serving as chairman of the commission.

Under the final House proposal, Garfield County will continue to be split between two House districts, but the part of the county devoted to Dist. 61, currently represented by Roger Wilson, D-Glenwood Springs, will be smaller than it has been.

Silt, which was part of Wilson’s district, will be in Dist. 57, presently represented by Rep. Randy Baumgardner, R-Hot Sulphur Springs.

Wilson will continue to represent New Castle, Glenwood Springs and Carbondale, along with Pitkin County, the southwestern portion of Eagle County, and the southerly counties of Gunnison and Hinsdale.

On the Senate side, the county will now be wholly represented by State Sen. Jean White, R-Hayden.

White has been representing most of the county previously, except for a small portion south of Parachute that was carved off into Senate Dist. 7 in the 2000 reapportionment.

There are 100 legislative districts in the state, between the two houses of the General Assembly. Carerra has said that if his maps become law, fully 33 of them will be “competitive,” meaning either party could win election there.

Currently, Democrats hold a majority in the state Senate, 20-15, while Republicans are the majority party in the House, 33-32.

Although legal challenges to the Carerra maps are still possible, if the Supreme Court approves the plan as proposed by Dec. 14 it will become law and the 2012 elections will follow the new district lines.

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