Glenwood resident Elizabeth Velasco announces primary bid for House District 57
Elizabeth Velasco, of Glenwood Springs, has officially tossed her name into the Democratic hat to try to win the party’s nomination to run for the Colorado House District 57 seat in the state Legislature.
Velasco joins another Glenwood Springs resident, Cole Buerger, in seeking the Democrats’ nomination. Buerger announced earlier this month that he was ending his bid for the 3rd Congressional District seat in favor of the state House race.
Republican incumbent state Rep. Perry Will, of New Castle, currently holds the HD 57 seat and intends to run for reelection.
The district was redrawn in the 2021 state legislative redistricting process to include all of Garfield and Pitkin counties and the Roaring Fork Valley portion of Eagle County. Previously, the district took in Rio Blanco and Moffat counties, which now are in HD 26 with Routt and the remainder of Eagle County.
In making her formal announcement Friday, Velasco listed support from current Roaring Fork School Board Vice President Jasmin Ramirez, former Garfield County commissioner candidate Beatriz Soto and Blanca Uzeta O’Leary, who was a CD3 representative on the Colorado Independent Legislative Redistricting Commission.
“I’m running for House District 57 because I have a vision for a thriving future in western Colorado,” Velasco said in a news release announcing her candidacy. “It’s time for bold action from our elected officials to address the serious issues we face so we’re not just reacting to what comes but prepared and prospering.”
Velasco is the daughter of first-generation immigrants raised in the Eagle River Valley and was a small business owner for seven years.
After working to provide information to Spanish-speaking residents during the 2020 Grizzly Creek Fire, she became a public information officer working the 2021 Sylvan Fire near Eagle and several major fires in Oregon and California.
Velasco has fought for equitable access to basic services for the Latino community and said her campaign focuses on four key issues for western Coloradans: rural infrastructure, community and economic resilience, health care access and support for families.
“Too many people are left out of the key decisions that affect their lives,” she said. “Our district has been struggling with the rising prices of health care, access to mental health services and lack of affordable housing. It’s time for a fresh voice, bold leadership and real representation of our unique and diverse district in the state Capitol.”
Nominations for state and local offices will be determined through the Republican and Democratic party caucuses and assemblies in March and April. Candidates receiving enough party support or successfully filing a nominating petition advance to the June 28 primary election. Seats will be decided in the Nov. 8 general election.
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Eagle County Detention Facility can house Pitkin County inmates on a temporary basis, but a long-term arrangement is doubtful, Sheriff James van Beek said Friday.