Siskiyou County Votes in Favor of Secession From California

, Posted: Wed, September 4 2013 at 6:44 PM, Updated: Wed, September 4 2013 at 8:54 PM

The 50 nifty United States no more?

If Siskiyou County has it their way it will be the nifty 51.

Siskiyou County is the first to jump on board the declaration of secession from California.

The first proposal was back in 1941.

Four counties here in Oregon including Jackson County as well as three in California were on the original proposal.

The State of Jefferson coalition and Siskiyou County officials are hoping to get a lot more on board this time.

Many are familiar with the idea of the State of Jefferson.

"This is an effort to say enough is enough and we'd like to have control of our own destiny," says County Supervisor Michael Kobseff.

The declaration first came to fruition back in 1941.

The movement came to an abrupt end in December after Pearl Harbor was bombed because secessionists focused their efforts on the war which crippled the movement.

"We/they are are getting with the regulations that come out of the California state legislature to the point now it's getting hard to survive economically," says Kobseff.

That's why Siskiyou County is the first to jump on board the State of Jefferson coalition's movement to re-visit the idea.

Residents and some county officials say they are fed up.

Kobseff says "we need representation and we are not currently getting that in Sacramento our voices are not being heard we are being ignored."

Tuesday, the County Board of Supervisors voted 4 to 1 in favor of a declaration of secession from California.

We talked with residents and we couldn't find one that was not in favor of the declaration.

"I'm tired of Southern California running our area, they're telling us what to do, we live different up here," says resident Charlene Dunlap.

Joann Gagner says "Sacramento and San Francisco govern us and they know nothing about us. We are a smaller community, a smaller everything compared to that."

Splitting from California would not be an easy task.  

Kobseff says "It's very difficult you have to get the state legislature, both houses to approve it and both houses of congress to approve it.

But difficult or not.   

The more than 70-year-old idea of the State of Jefferson has now been brought back to life.

The one vote in opposition was cast by board chair Ed Valenzuela.

He says he took an oath to uphold the State Constitution and was elected to solve problems within the existing system.

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