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William Harding

Commission: both

Zip: 81428

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

9-17-21 Dear Commissioners’, I am a landowner at the base of Mt. Lamborn near Paonia within Delta County, Colorado. I offer the following comments regarding the redistricting process. The maps seem to follow a traditional pattern of working county splits using existing roads to define boundary lines. In this case a North/South division using State Hwy 92 and West/East divides via Leroux Creek Road. From a historical perspective many counties were derived from old wagon roads that no longer exist and consequently any commonality tended to shift over time. As a plea and paradigm shift, I request that the commissions take into account doing everything they can to keep the Gunnison River Watershed intact and even further suggest that all watersheds be granted the same consideration. Watersheds especially in this time is of shared interest toward continued sustainment of the environment and the economic engines of the constituents locally as well as throughout the southwest. The Gunnison River Watershed is a supply source that not only provides for domestic and agricultural water use for both Delta and Gunnison Counties but supplies a 6th of the surface water for the Colorado River Compact that serves 7 states and the needs of roughly 40 million people. At this time we have seen the continued effects of drought that even now drains large reservoirs in this state to supplement water for Lake Powell and Lake Mead to levels not seen before they were initially filled It appears to me that one of the most important legislative issues for constituents living in this area that affect all of our futures here are water, watershed management, ecosystem protection, wildfire and geologic hazard mitigation, regenerative agriculture, protection of public health, safety, and welfare. I appreciate the work the commissions have before them to seek a fair and balanced approach to establish these districts going forward. It seems that now more than ever managing and preserving our watersheds needs to be a frontline consideration for any further planning. Sincerely, Bill Harding

Brad Roe

Commission: congressional

Zip: 81058

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

My name is Brad Roe and I have lived in Otero County, specifically outside the town of Manzanola. Southeastern Colorado Counties have a tough enough time not only earning a living and keeping our businesses but competing for a voice in what happens in our state through the legislative process, including tax dollars spent. We deserve to be represented by the same people as our neighboring counties. Combining our counties with those of the southwest/western slope is unjust and only works to divide an already divided state. We need our own voice and that voice should represent all of southeastern Colorado. Thank you!

Owen Swallow

Commission: congressional

Zip: 80401

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

I am not entirely sure how this independent redistricting committee is coming up with the maps they have been putting out. I really am not trying to be rude, but each consecutive proposal I've seen seems to hold little regard for actual communal identity, instead of seeming to be concerned with coming off as bipartisan and reacting to every minor political whim of the state. I was always taught that the congressional delegation was supposed to be representative of enough of a cross-section of our current population that is added to our representative democracy. As it currently stands, with the second congressional staff plan for the congressional house elections, not only does it feel entirely unrepresentative of the current Coloradan populace, it also seems to ignore the current political and demographic breakdown of the state. In a state that has grown increasingly less competitive on a macro-level, with current trends favoring that of the Democratic Party, the attempt to make the state more competitive, while understandable, should not actually be the priority of this committee. Frankly, you all know this, but rather than actually creating a map that reflects the state's current population, it seems that the committee would rather act like our state's demographics haven't shifted since the last census date. There is no reason to divide the state in the way the committee has proposed, there just isn't. The way the districts have been drawn in such a way that the GOP receives a much more favorable map than the current numbers actually reflect. 3 districts have been pushed into a non-competitive range securing the GOP at least 3 congressional seats, with another favorable district in the newly created 8th district. Likely resulting in a 4-4 split in our congressional delegation when the GOP has been unable to come close to consistently performing at a statewide level for more than a decade, with some minor outliers. Frankly, the first map proposed made more sense, but speaking as someone from the 7th District, the committee seems to not realize the repercussions of their potential decisions. The more suburban half of Jefferson County has very different needs and interests than that of the more rural and mountains half of the county, creating a scenario that pits two communities against the other. Across the board, this seems to have not been taken into account with the exception of the 1st district (encompassing all of Denver County) and the 5th District (predominantly El Paso County). My biggest suggestion to this committee would be to actually listen to the criticism you are receiving. In fact, districts proposed by groups such as the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) have made public their proposals for what they consider to be the best way to divide the state. To conclude, I would say this committee needs to hear the critiques the citizens of Colorado have of their current proposals. Each map put out thus far feels like a rejection of the will of Colorado people, opting instead for what the committee deems to be the most appropriate way of splitting up the state. As the committee charged with overseeing how our state is represented at a national level, the committee must be adherent to the actual will of the people it represents. That is what makes this committee unique from partisan redistricting plans which are still common across the country. Trying to impose whatever view the committee currently holds as the most appropriate way of dividing the state clearly is not representative of our state's population and I hope that the committee has enough good sense to realize and correct itself.

Noah Zachary Smith

Commission: congressional

Zip: 80226

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

This current map up for debate is just embarrassing. It creates a clear advantage to Republicans to retain a 4/4 split in a state in which a Republican presidential candidate hasn't gotten above 45% since 2004. The 8th district is clearly drawn to make it more favorable to Republicans as well as the 3rd being drawn up to shore up that district for Republicans as well. Just speaking in my own district (the 7th), the people of the metro area of Jefferson county have extremely different needs from those in the mountain communities. I have lived in both and can tell you that a major source of issues was the fact that the needs of the mountain communities would be neglected, in order to help the cities and vice versa. Somehow these maps have increasingly gotten worse and worse and more nonsensical. While I do agree with the potential pairing of Ft. Collins with Boulder, it doesn't really make sense geographically. This map simply seems to be an attempt to retain the status quo, but Colorado has changed dramatically in the last 10 years and we all know it. To deny that fact and to not reflect those changes in the congressional map is a blatant neglect of reality.

Robert C Marshall

Commission: congressional

Zip: 80126

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

It has been difficult to try and understand how Fort Collins, which has an integral community of interest with agricultural concerns (from CSU's Agricultural and Veterinarian schools; to a USDA Research Center and the farming communities surrounding Fort Collins) is taken out of the 4th CD compromising the Eastern Plains; while Highlands Ranch, which is a planned densely packed suburb with NO agricultural interests at all is forced to remain in the 4th CD. But it appears the answer is pretty clear now: "Commissioners voted earlier in September to base the latest map on one drawn by Commissioner Martha Coleman, a Democrat from Fort Collins who is a geographer." https://castlerocknewspress.net/stories/latest-congressional-map-keeps-house-members-apart,382193 I urge the commission to not let personal parochial concerns impact their decision-making but keep focused on grouping geographic areas with communities of interest together. If so, then it is impossible to believe that Highlands Ranch should not be in the suburban Congressional districts to its North, while Fort Collins has far more in common with the Eastern Plains agricultural communities. Fully understand that Commissioner Coleman would prefer her home area of Fort Collins to not be in the 4th CD as a Democrat. But an objective view of the legal criteria that must be considered would show that bowing to such a demand when it negatively impacts other places in the state like Highlands Ranch, is totally inappropriate. Thank you.

Joseph Marr

Commission: congressional

Zip: 80023

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

I have reviewed the plan and the maps and it is confusing. There seems to be no logic to the boundaries. The divisions are east-west or north-south but do not reflect the large variations in peoples’ attitudes, interests, and community across the state. People on the Western slope who happen to be in the same district with others on the Eastern slope may have little in common. It is completely unclear how representatives suddenly can understand and relate to people distant from their current constituents. Our representative will live in Lafayette and represent a very different part of the state as well. Of personal importance to me is that Broomfield will be divided into separate districts. This would be an enormous mistake. This is a tightly knit community of like-minded people with common interests and goals. Dividing us for some political reason would be a terrible disservice and create enormous resentment.

Bruce Talbott

Commission: congressional

Zip: 81526

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

Western Colorado is very different than the front range culturally and economically and needs to be its own district as much as possible. Years ago we were gerrymandered with Fort Collins for the purpose of unseating Representative Wayne Aspinall. He had not campaigned in years because as the representative of Western Colorado, there was no need to. He underestimated the impact of a Front Range city in the district and did not respond appropriately. Once he was gone the district was changed back because it never made sense in the first place and neither side of the hill was happy. Western Colorado shares a drainage that bonds us, is predominately rural and agriculture which also is a community of interest. Urban interests are entirely different and those voting blocks tend to overpower any self determination rural communities may have. If you get down to communities of interest on a hard core level, it would make more sense for Western Colorado to annex to either Utah or better yet Wyoming. We would be far more politically compatible. I prefer the original plan most but on the second staff plan, if the third district could keep Moffat, Rio Blanco, Garfield, Fremont , Custer and Teller counties and had to give up Routt, Eagle and Summit counties, it would be the least damaging. The closer we can be to keeping Western Colorado intact the better off the communities are. Thank you for your attention

June K Dreith

Commission: both

Zip: 80538

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

I am against the most recent Congressional District Redistricting map released September 15, 2021. You are taking Loveland out of District 2. There is no way this is fair putting Loveland into a district made up mostly of Weld County. Loveland has nothing in common with Weld County. Loveland is not rural and doesn’t have oil and gas wells. Is not an agricultural based economy with meat packing plant. In addition, the placement of Loveland in with Weld County would greatly bias the voting population towards the Republican party something the redistricting committee promised they would not do. I have in the passed written the committee a very long comment letter regarding placing Loveland in with Weld County and how the residents of Loveland DO NOT WANT to be in the same district as Weld County. WHY DID YOU NOT Listen? I suggest you find that rather long and detailed comments letter I send you as my comment on this redistricting proposal have not changed. I cannot express how deeply disappointed I am in your continued effort to stick Loveland in with Weld County. In closing, we are very happy with our present House Representative Joe Neguse and wish to remain in his district, so stop messing with us pick on some other area of Colorado.

Summit County Sheriff Jaime FitzSimons

Commission: legislative

Zip: 80424

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

I will be speaking to the commission on the virtual meeting Saturday morning, but I want to submit a map that I believe addresses the issues around both competitiveness and compactness in our mountain communities. This map would solve the issues around rural Larimer County being put in with Moffat County in a very unwieldy district, keep Summit County whole and reduce the overall number of county splits, and protect the seat around the Roaring Fork Valley. Additionally, both Democratic and Republican candidates would have won House Districts 46, 49 and 57 at various points over the past 10 years. House District 26 has tilted Republican, but falls within the competitive range using the composite of 2016-2020 races. This is a substantial improvement on the staff map, creating 3 competitive districts instead of 3 safe seats in the mountains. https://davesredistricting.org/join/146b45bf-538f-4abe-a73a-ed5cd9808333

Tracy Wahl

Commission: legislative

Zip: 81082

Submittted: September 17, 2021

Comment:

It's such a bizarre map. Shows a complete lack if understanding of the various political cultures in CO. To claim that Las Animas County a community of interest with the entire western slope is absurd.

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