COLORADO: OUT OF FOCUS, OUT OF BALANCE
COMMISSIONER EDITORIAL, OCTOBER 10, 2013: STATEHOOD INITIATIVE
Author: Commissioner Barbara KirkmeyerTopic: SB252, Oil and Gas, and Transportation Funding
Date: 10/14/13Contact: Jennifer Finch, 970-336-7203
When two state senators were recalled, first time ever in Colorado's history, Governor Hickenlooper called oncitizens to "refocus again on what unites Coloradoans.” And when he heard about the secession movement and realized we were serious, he commented, “I will, you know, work especially hard this next session to
try and make sure
we have a more balanced approach to
all of Colorado.
"Even the Governor acknowledges we have lost our way and some of our top state elected officials have not beenworking for
all of Colorado.
One of our representatives, Representative Young stated, "I think we are always better off when we work together." Me too! But working together requires folks being in the same room, actually acknowledging eachother's views and opinions, and listening to each other.This was not the case this last legislative session. Senate Bill 252, the law that doubles the current percentage of electricity a rural electric cooperative must derive from renewable energy sources, was crafted behind closed doors. No one in legislative leadership even spoke with our rural electric coops. And worse yet, the lawexempts municipal utilities. When a group of largely urban lawmakers pass laws that embody a narrow politicalagenda serving special interests and foists costly mandates on rural economies and agriculture – it’s called tyranny.The state capitol may only be 65 miles away from our county seat, but it might as well be in New York City.Hickenlooper, who had initially rejected calls for stronger gun control laws, and state legislators took their cuesfrom the Mayor of New York City rather than listen to their constituents. Debate and the opportunity for publiccomment during the hearings were extremely limited, frustrating citizens and making people feel even moredisenfranchised.Another case of relegating farmers, surface owners, and County Commissioners to the sidelines occurred whenthe Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission proposed the 1000 ft Setback Rule. When asked why the
OFFICE OF THE BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
Phone: 970-336-7204Fax: 970-352-02421150 O StreetP.O. Box 758Greeley, CO 80632