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Maria Heymans

Commission: both

Zip: 80236

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

Esteemed Commissioners, My name is María Heymans and I am a retired public school teacher (I taught math for 28 years). I am a Latina. I live in southwest Denver and I attended the public hearing on Wednesday July 21st with the intention to submit a comment, but the meeting ran too long and I had to leave. I am sharing my views here. In future meetings, please consider starting on time and limiting the amount of time questioning one person, so that the rest of the people who wanted to participate have a chance to do that. On July 21st, one person was questioned for over 30 minutes and at 9:00 p.m., there were still 25 people who wanted to participate with their comments. I was disappointed that I could not give my comments. I am here to ask that you reconsider the preliminary map for CD-1. A part of southwest Denver has been severed from CD-1 and I think this is an injustice to our community. Our southwest Denver community, especially people of color, seems to be getting penalized and our voices are being silenced with this preliminary configuration of CD-1. I would like to see CD-1 correspond with the boundaries of the city and county of Denver, but I understand that there are too many people, making CD-1 too big. But I feel like communities of color are neglected and mistreated, and it feels like too often, it is our community in southwest Denver. I feel the same way about the preliminary map of HD-1. A small piece of Denver has been cut off from HD-1. Again, they are part of the community and I don't want them excluded. I have been told that CD-1 has about 10,000 too many people, which seems minor when you consider the population in Denver is over 727,000. The 10,000 people represent 1.4% of the 727,000. I don’t want to see some in my community mistreated and silenced over a small numerical triviality. Thank you for your time, María Heymans

Mary Kelver

Commission: both

Zip: 80005

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

Please keep Arvada in Jefferson county. As. Retired teacher, I was part of Jeffco Schools in ARVADA! All public services in Arvada are related to Jefferson County, such as Health Dept, Libraries, Open Space Parks. The coordination between cities in Jefferson County is well established. I have no desire to be linked with Adams or Weld,Brighton or Broomfield!

Kathleen M Wilson

Commission: both

Zip: 80538

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

I oppose prison gerrymandering. It gives undo influence to locations where prisons are located, instead of adding to the population count of locations where prisoners live when they are not serving their terms. I believe that prison gerrymandering is inherently undemocratic.

Janelle C Kukuk

Commission: congressional

Zip: 81130

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

Please see attached letter. Thank you. Janelle Kukuk Mineral County Administrator countyadmin@mincocolo.com 719-658-2360 1201 N Main, PO Box 70 Creede, CO 81130

Tristan

Commission: both

Zip: 80216

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

I am writing to urge you to honor the will of the people of Colorado and HB20-1010 by ending prison gerrymandering. I live in Swansea, a mostly Latino neighborhood in Denver and have lived in Latino and Black neighborhoods in Denver for the past 15 years. I have practiced indigent criminal defense in Denver for more than a decade, and those clients I represent are my community of interest. It is illegal and unjust to deprive anyone of their constitutional right to equal representation. Counting people where they are incarcerated, rather than in their home community, does just that. It also furthers the harm we inflict on communities of color through overpolicing, racial profiling, and tearing apart BIPOC families and communities through mass incarceration. It makes the district maps another tool to dilute BIPOC communities. Because we disenfranchise people who are incarcerated, they cannot vote to shape policies or legislation on prisons, law enforcement, courts, criminal law, or a myriad of other issues that directly impact their lives. Prison gerrymandering artificially inflates the population count of districts in which prisons are located, but a great many of the people counted there have no vote, no voice, and are ignored by policy makers because of this. They are discriminated against and exploited because legislators don't have to campaign on their issues or even consider them as constituents. This practice is analogous to the notorious three-fifths compromise: we count BIPOC for population purposes where they are held against their will but do not afford them the right to vote or any say in the laws that so negatively impact their lives, their families, and their communities. Prison gerrymandering unfairly tilts representation toward rural districts where prisons are primarily located. But it fails to recognize that only the predominately white prison guards, vendors, and their families are allowed the vote, while BIPOC (usually from urban areas) cannot participate in the electoral process. Their communities are separated geographically, diluted in elections, and effectively silenced in our democracy. This systemic racism must stop. It is incredibly harmful, and it ensures that the power to change laws, to elect legislators, and to shape policy that alters the course of BIPOC communities rests in white hands. It is 2021, and we should know better and do better. Please ensure that the district maps comport with the U.S. and Colorado constitutions, Colorado law, and the will of the voters. Do not allow the redistricting process to perpetuate systemic racism. Thousands of Coloradans are in prison with no voice, and they are disproportionately BIPOC. Count them in their home communities. End this outrageous injustice that is a stain on the democratic processes of our state.

Vaughn Baker

Commission: congressional

Zip: 80517

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

Splitting Estes Park and western Larimer County from the 2nd district makes no sense. We are connected to Fort Collins and Loveland for county services, shopping, medical, etc. We have virtually nothing in common with the 3rd district. For much of the year, its a 3 hour drive to get over the Continental Divide which separates us from the current 3rd district. Its very likely that a congressional district office won't be located on the east side of the Divide which would further alienate us from our representative. Please reconsider.

Mr. & Mrs. Chris Ketchum

Commission: both

Zip: 80439

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

Greetings Colorado Independent Redistricting Commission, The House District 24 proposal replacing our current HD25 assignment would be an unmitigated disaster for Conifer, Evergreen, and other mountain communities, as it attempts to meld two uniquely diverse communities: the front range urban suburbs of Superior and Louisville, and other rural foothills/mountain communities. The critical interests of government services, recreational facilities, traffic, transportation, public health, law enforcement, first responders, fire mitigation, forest fires, limited ingress/egress, water availability, zoning, land use, flooding, and conservation for the citizens living in the foothills/mountains around Conifer and Evergreen are vastly different than those living in the urban suburbs of Louisville and Superior. House District 24, as proposed, looks too much like gerrymandering to balance voters, which is forbidden in the Colorado Constitution, rather than a representative grouping of the foothills/mountain citizens with common interests and is in violation of the spirit if not the intent of the Colorado Constitution. The two distinct areas would both have more fair and effective representation if the eastern edge of House District 24 was Hwy C-470, W. 6th Ave/64th St, CO Hwy 93, bounded by CO Hwy 72 on the north and Deer Creek Canyon and Pleasant Park Roads on the south, with the proposed HD24 areas of Louisville & Superior being absorbed by surrounding House Districts that have like communities of interest. Rebalancing would be simpler by taking the proposed HD24 citizens in the Louisville & Superior areas and putting them in HD 25, 36, and 37 and then taking the people living in the far west sides of HD 13, 12, 10, and 23 and adding them to HD 24 to create a house district representing a community of common interests. This does not involve as many people as there are not that many people living in the lower foothills, with the possible exception of the lower elevation portions of Golden proper which could be carved out and left in HD12, which would actually make some sense. Please consider this before you make this decision. Respectfully, Chris Ketchum Evergreen, CO

Abigail Jensen

Commission: both

Zip: 80487

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

What shared interests unite your community? · Western Slope and northwest Colorado communities have ranching, agriculture, fossil fuel energy, wilderness & forest and outdoor recreation industries in common. As we move away from fossil fuels and toward "green" energy, keeping our communities united to find alternative industries and jobs is of the utmost importance. Supporting the balance of wilderness and ranching is also critical. · What are your community’s public policy concerns? · Western Slope and northwest Colorado public policy concerns include affordable housing, ranching and agricultural concerns, wilderness and forestry concerns, quality public education, healthcare, climate change and energy, and local and state taxes. Routt county residence need affordable housing and representation that will understand how our rural communities can leverage opportunities that will bring down the cost of housing, utilities, and transportation to support middle and lower income families within and beyond Routt County. Routt county needs to be aligned w other ranching counties with similar land, water, and economic needs. We must also remain aligned w rural counties to ensure proper representation to maintain available, quality healthcare for our residents. Remaining aligned w rural counties helps to keep the all the threads of rural, ranching, wilderness, and outdoor recreation in balance. There really is nothing urban about Routt county. · What geographic areas or features are important to your community? · Western Slope and northwest Colorado geographic features include the Rocky Mountains west of the Continental Divide, abundant river valleys, vast farming and ranching pastures, some of the best producing hay fields in the country and wide semi-arid basins and plateaus. These are important because they are the resources for our main industries. Much of this land is owned by the federal government and must be managed appropriately to continue supporting the livelihoods of our citizens as well as the environment. We must have proper representation to ensure our forests are responsibly managed to reduce the growing wildfire hazards and conservation of our fragile ecosystems. We must also have representation to help manage our water supply as our communities grow and local demand rises to support our industries and communities. · What else should the commissions know about your community? · Routt County is part of the Western Slope and northwest Colorado. Our needs are different than those of the Front Range or even Eagle or Pitkin counties. These communities and counties are urban in nature and have entirely different community interests, cultural and economic needs than those of our rural Routt county. Being included in urban or non-ranching counties would diminish our representation in Denver and in Washington, D.C.

William Hineser

Commission: both

Zip: 80004

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

Commissioners, You have separated Arvada from Jefferson County and this is not acceptable. We have no relationship and nothing in common with our northern neighbers. Please don’t screw with us just to make the numbers come out. This is not fair. Undoubtably there will be lawsuits if this current situation stands. Please, keep us with our own. This is the right thing to do. Bill Hineser (submitted by email 7/22/21)

Jane Houssiere

Commission: both

Zip: 80301

Submittted: July 23, 2021

Comment:

I am writing to express my support for ending the practice of prison gerrymandering. It makes sense and is more equitable for persons who temporarily live in prisons or jails be allowed to vote in their home districts, rather than constitute part of the district where the institution is located. (submitted by email 7/22/21)

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