State Sen. Dan Gibbs, the popular replacement for former Senate President Joan Fitz-Gerald in SD-16, has announced that he will not seek re-election to his state Senate seat, instead opting to run for the Summit County Board of Commissioners. Rep. Christine Scanlan, who was appointed to Gibbs’ House seat, is considering running.
Release follows, says Sen. Gibbs, “I have been blessed to serve my community under the gold dome as a State Representative and State Senator, and as an aide to Congressman Mark Udall for six years. These experiences have given me a rich understanding of complex issues facing our nation, our state and our local communities. I want to put my passion for policy making and adeptness for collaborative problem solving to use to help my local community that I call home, Summit County.”
You can read the full release below, but what is no doubt a consideration–and we don’t want to put words into Gibbs’ mouth here–but it can’t go unmentioned that the low salary for a state legislator continues to drive good public servants out of the legislature and into other realms. A state legislator makes a $30,000 a year salary, with terrible benefits (the state health care plan is brutal); any public servant with a future and/or a family to consider can’t stay in the legislature for long before looking elsewhere (and spare us the “part-time legislator” nonsense–this is basically a full-time job now).
Greetings friends and faithful supporters,
I am grateful for your support and friendship. It is dedicated volunteers and community activists like you that are working to strengthen our communities and preserve and protect our Colorado way of life.
I want you to know that after considerable thought and consultation with my family and closest friends, I have made the decision to not seek re-election to Colorado State Senate District 16 in 2010, and will instead seek election to the Summit Board of County Commissioners, This was not an easy decision for me to make, but I am excited about the possibility of serving the community that I live in and love.
During my time at the Capitol, I have sought bipartisan, common sense solutions to our state’s most complex issues including forest health, transportation, and economic vitality. Likewise, I have worked to promote tourism and protect our small businesses. I believe that my record reflects positive contributions to both the State of Colorado and my own Senate District 16.
I am committed to fulfilling my elected term as your State Senator and am excited about the upcoming legislative session. I will tirelessly pursue collaborative solutions to the issues that are important to my district and the state, including making higher education more accessible, improving the health of our forests, and putting forth a state budget that is fiscally responsible.
I have been blessed to serve my community under the gold dome as a State Representative and State Senator, and as an aide to Congressman Mark Udall for six years. These experiences have given me a rich understanding of complex issues facing our nation, our state and our local communities. I want to put my passion for policy making and adeptness for collaborative problem solving to use to help my local community that I call home, Summit County.
Again, thank you for enriching my life with your support. I look forward to fulfilling my obligations to serve as your State Senator and hope for your continued support as I complete my term and move forward seeking the office of Summit County Commissioner.