Thursday, August 22, 2013

Colorado county considers attaching itself to Wyoming

The Craig (Colo.) Daily Press reports that 
Moffat County could be moving toward secession from Colorado under the 51st State Initiative.

Moffat County Commissioner John Kinkaid announced his intention Tuesday to write the ballot language that would ask local voters whether they want to join the secession movement.

“It’s up to people like us to make a statement that we’re not happy, and we want to go in a different direction,” Kinkaid said during Tuesday’s commission meeting.


The 51st State Initiative made headlines when five counties in eastern Colorado approved putting the question of secession to voters.

“The goal is to form a 51st state,” said Jeffrey Hare, executive director of the 51st State Initiative.

 “The net result would be a state that better reflects the values of those outside the Denver/Boulder corridor.”
And here's the fun part:
Kinkaid said Moffat County, under the referendum, would either join up with the 51st state or maybe become part of Wyoming.
Wyo. Gov. Matt Mead is having none of this, according to an AP story in the Billings Gazette:
Officials in Wyoming were not amused.

"The country and our state face many significant challenges at this time. This discussion does not move us forward," said Renny MacKay, spokesman for Gov. Matt Mead.
Wyoming might come out ahead on the deal. We'd gain a big chunk of real estate (4,751 square miles) without adding a lot of people (13,795). Sure, most are Republicans but that won't matter much in this Republican-dominated state. We would inherit the lion's share of Dinosaur National Monument. It would make a nice bookend to our other national monument -- Devils Tower -- in the northwest corner of the state. We'd get a nice new batch of oil and gas leases (and accompanying mineral royalties). Our borders would creep closer to all that great skiing at Steamboat, the closest major ski area to all of us in Wyoming's southern tier.

If those addled, secession-minded Moffat Countians come knocking, Gov. Mead, I think you should answer. Let's hear what they have to say.

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