There are 100 individual Colorado citizens elected to serve in the Colorado General Assembly. There are 65 Representatives and 35 Senators in the Colorado General Assembly, the Senate having a smaller number of districts with each district representing a greater number of people than any individual House district. Colorado state Senate and House districts are determined by the citizen population in each district, and therefore can be made up of whole counties or portions of counties, depending on the population of that county. The population of the state of Colorado and its 100 electoral districts for the General Assembly is determined by the census, which is conducted by the United States federal government every ten years. Based upon the current population count, State Representatives represent approximately 77,500 citizens per district and State Senators represent approximately 144,000 citizens per district. The next census will be conducted in the year 2020, and Colorado electoral districts for the Colorado General Assembly will go through another round of redistricting. Redistricting is the responsibility of the Colorado Independent Redistricting Commissions. There are two commissions, one for congressional districts and one for legislative districts. Each commission is comprised of 12 members selected through judicial review and random draw. Prior to 2018, redistricting was the responsibility of the Colorado Reapportionment Commission which consisted of 11 members appointed by General Assembly leadership, the Governor, and the Chief Justice of the Colorado Supreme Court. In 2018, Colorado voters approved Amendments Y and Z, which transferred the responsibility for redrawing congressional and legislative districts from the Colorado legislature and the Reapportionment Commission to the newly created independent commissions.
Denver had few permanent settlers until the late 1850s, when gold was discovered in a tributary of the South Platte River. Colorado was unable to secure a federal sanction until the early 1860s, when it became the Territory of Colorado. The first territorial legislature met in Denver on September 9, 1861. Between the years 1861 and 1867, three cities shared the distinction of being Colorado’s territorial capitol: Colorado City, Golden, and Denver. Between 1864 and 1875 Colorado had three constitutional conventions to draft a state constitution. Finally, in 1876 the Colorado Constitution was adopted, and Colorado became the 38th state.
The first general election was held on October 3, 1876, and the first Colorado General Assembly convened on November 1, 1876. The Senate had 26 members, and the House of Representatives had 49 members.
In 1881, Colorado citizens voted to make Denver the permanent seat of Colorado state government. Construction of the Capitol building began in 1889. The legislature and the Governor took occupancy of the current capitol building in 1895, though the Capitol was not completed until 1903.