Population growth will shrink some Western Slope legislative districts

Nearly all legislative districts in the region would get smaller as a result of new U.S. census numbers released Wednesday.

That data shows eight of the nine House and Senate districts in the region have more people than the state average, meaning each had an increase in population over the past decade that will lead to smaller districts.

By law, legislative and congressional districts have to be as near to the same size in population as possible.

Of the five House districts in the region, the seat now held by Rep. Ray Scott, R-Grand Junction, has the most people. His western Mesa County district has 86,291 residents. The statewide average is 77,372.

The same is true for Sen. Steve King’s Senate District 7. The Grand Junction Republican’s district has 152,044 residents, while the statewide average is 143,691.

Only Senate District 5, held by Sen. Gail Schwartz, D-Snowmass Village, has fewer residents than the average. Her district has 128,103 people, meaning it is expected to increase in size to take in more voters.

A Colorado Reapportionment Commission is to be named this spring to redraw legislative district lines based on the new Census numbers.


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