A proposal backed by several Colorado counties to form a new state called North Colorado is getting public support.
More than four dozen people showed up Thursday at the first public meeting to discuss a proposal to form a 51st state. Nearly all of them said they support secession.
The Greeley Tribune reports people from Weld, Morgan, Logan, Sedgwick, Phillips, Washington, Yuma and Kit Carson counties are included in the discussion.
“I think people, when they feel disenfranchised, when they feel that their voices are not being heard, I think that’s a problem in a representative form of government,” Weld County commissioner Sean Conway was quoted as saying.
The U.S. Constitution requires that legislatures must first approve any state that is to be created within its jurisdiction.
The five Weld County commissioners at the meeting said they support including the 51st state initiative on the county's ballot in November, The Greeley Tribune reported.
Commissioners say legislative efforts to crack down on energy drilling and gun laws are prime reasons for the movement.
“We believe there’s an attack on oil and gas,” commissioner Barbara Kirkmeyer said. “We believe there’s an attack on agriculture. I don’t think those down in Denver understand any of it.”
The commissioners have also expressed concern about the lack of funding for infrastructure and education. They claim there is a disconnect between rural voters and legislators on issues such as water and energy production.
Three additional meetings have been scheduled to allow the public to comment on the secession proposal, according to the report.