Politics

Wild County residents are proposing to leave Colorado again, this time to join Wyoming

Residents launched an effort to obtain action on November ballot that would explore Colorado County to become part of Wyoming.

Colorado Campaign Fund Disclosure website showed that Christopher Richards registered the Wild County Political Committee in Wyoming in February, KDVR-TV mentioned. He prompted a ballot that would direct Wilde County commissioners to participate and explore annexation with Wyoming.

The county east of Fort Collins has a population of over 324,000.

Richards said during a meeting in November that he had the idea in 2019 after reading an opinion piece in The Denver Post and started following the idea with a Facebook page.

“We will move a county to a different state,” he said, adding that the effort would only redraw state lines to exclude Wild County from Colorado and include it within the boundaries of Wyoming instead.

Another person said at the meeting, which was posted online, that Colorado is “at war with the three major economic drivers of Wild County: small businesses, agriculture, and oil and gas.”

But Colorado officials rejected the idea.

“I definitely love living in Colorado. For those who don’t like living here, there are definitely less ridiculous ways to move to Wyoming,” Greely City Councilor Tommy Butler told KDVR-TV.

Jennifer Carroll, Erie Mayor, said if the proposal were put on the ballot, residents would have a lot to consider and it could be a long process.

“There are a lot of considerations for Weld County voters if they want to separate from Wyoming: income tax, personal property tax, corporate state income tax, retirement income tax, gas tax, termination taxes on oil and gas, and water to name a few,” “If residents of Wild County agree to the ballot question, then the Colorado legislature must approve it, the Wyoming legislature must approve it, and it is possible that both Colorado and Congress voters will agree to that,” Carroll said in a statement.

A similar idea proposed in 2013 aimed at forming a new state with several northern Colorado counties but failed. It was passed in five of the 11 counties in Colorado where it appeared on the ballot.

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