If customers have to get food to go, they should able to get alcohol to go with it, according to the Colorado Restaurant Association, which is mounting a legislative push around the subject.
The Colorado Air Quality Control Commission on Friday adopted a regulation aimed at curbing the state's greenhouse gas emissions, a byproduct of last year's Senate Bill 181 and three other pieces of legislation.
On Thursday night, the Joint Budget Committee made its final cut to balance the 2020-21 budget by turning to K-12 education, and it was the biggest of all: as much as $724 million, although that figure could be reduced down to $577 million in the coming days.
With time running out to find the money to balance the 2020-21 budget, the Joint Budget Committee did what it hoped it wouldn't have to do: recommend a major cut in funding to K-12 education.
On narrow legal grounds, a Denver district court judge dismissed a challenge to Colorado’s 2019 “red flag” law, finding that there was no question of a Second Amendment violation, but rather a “political question” about legislative rules.
It works like this: seniors 65 and older and who have been in a primary residence for 10 years can have property taxes waived for 50% of the first $200,000 of actual property value. The program also applies to disabled veterans.
Lawmakers voted to go much farther than JBC staff had been suggesting. At the beginning of the budget-cutting exercise on May 4, the staff had presented 10% and 20% across-the-board cuts, and on Tuesday, they offered information on what a 30% general fund cut, or $246.8 million, would look like.
The Joint Budget Committee on Tuesday voted to close the men's-only Skyline prison in Cañon City, a 252-bed facility, effective January 2021. They also voted to gut higher ed general fund support by 58%, or $493.2 million, the largest budget cut to date.
Gov. Jared Polis on Monday distributed more than $1 billion in federal dollars from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act, but drew ire from Republicans and Joint Budget Committee members for leaving them out of the process.
The goal of protecting K-12 education funding was forced to fall by the wayside Tuesday as the Joint Budget Committee continued to search for massive cuts to the 2020-21 general fund budget.
The Joint Budget Committee, facing a multi-billion dollar shortfall for 2020-21 and the following year, has made a somewhat unusual decision.
Led by the Colorado Center on Law and Policy and the Colorado Fiscal Institute, 135 organizations from the state are urging Gov. Jared Polis and the General Assembly to save programs from budget cuts by applying a "three-pronged approach" that includes a tax increase.
The Joint Budget Committee (JBC) voted Friday to draft a bill to postpone the ballot measure, which was due to be referred to the ballot by the General Assembly this year. They also cut funding for the tourism office and to support the outdoor recreation industry.
El Paso County lawmakers were happy with some economic good news Friday when it was announced Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs would be the the provisional headquarters of U.S. Space Command.
With $2.5 billion to cut from the 2020-21 budget, the Joint Budget Committee is looking everywhere they can for savings that will avoid bigger cuts to state services for vulnerable populations, stave off layoffs and preserve K-12 education funding.
JBC members said if the federal package comes through, they could undo many of the actions they’re considering in the next two weeks to cover the shortfall.
After Tuesday's grim news that the state budget shortfall for 2020-21 will reach $3.3 billion, on Wednesday the Joint Budget Committee began the most difficult work of all: where to find it.
A precipitous drop in oil and gas activity compounds the problem, according to Kate Watkins, chief economist for the Legislative Council.
Joey Bunch: "When people lose their job, they lose their health care. That creates its own crisis when the country is facing is deepest unemployment rates, potentially 1 in 5 people gainfully employed two months ago, out of work and out of insurance."
The additional delay will give lawmakers more time for preparations such as safety protocols, to work through legislation tied to the COVID-19 pandemic, and to"seek greater clarity on potential Congressional action that could significantly impact our state budget."
The committee ended up cutting budget items or transferring cash funds for about $90 million.
A big difference, at least so far, in the Colorado General Assembly's work on the state budget is severance taxes aren't in the mix.
While the state has made progress, the order states, "we must continue taking aggressive action to minimize the duration of this epidemic and of the disruption to our daily lives."
Members struck a hopeful tone that some cuts can be backfilled by CARES Act funding.
The JBC didn't consider some of the uglier — and bigger — cuts proposed by the JBC staff, and it was at that moment that the weight of those recommendations began to show on the staff.
No member of the Joint Budget Committee has been in the legislature long enough to take part in any budget-cutting pain
The Joint Budget Committee members spent part of the day engaged in turf wars over tourism, education and just how much of the state budget should be balanced on the backs of state employees, which has been an easier go-to in prior recessions.
The Joint Budget Committee have to find $2 billion to $3 billion in savings for the 2020-21 budget. JBC members will be working this week through budget-cutting recommendations for the first five state agencies plus PERA.
The proposal sought to create a public-private insurance policy to compete with existing insurers with below-market rates fueled by cost controls places on the health care industry, primarily hospitals.
Rep. Leslie Herod said Friday she was relieved and pleased that the governor expanded the state's 2-1-1 to allow employees and heath care patients to report discrimination.
The Colorado Supreme Court on Friday opened the door for a ballot measure on paid family leave, ruling that two ballot measures proposed by Colorado Families First designates that the program would be paid by a fee, not a tax.
“After more than six years of working to secure paid family and medical leave for all Coloradans, we can’t afford to wait any longer," said Sen. Faith Winter in a statement Thursday night. "It is time to take the power out of the lobby and give it back to the people of Colorado.”
The Denver metro area's Regional Transportation District still hopes to press ahead into a shiny tomorrow, once it survives the global pandemic. Yet the system already faced budget shortfalls and problems finding drivers months before anybody ever heard the term social distancing.
A petition clause allows the public to challenge a law passed by the General Assembly. The clause delays the bill’s effective date for 90 days until citizens have had an opportunity to decide whether to issue that challenge.
Taylor served eight years in the House, from 1993 to 2000, and eight years in the Senate, 2001 to 2008. The Chicago-born Republican worked in the coal and real estate industries.
Lawmakers signed a letter condemning bigotry after House Minority Leader Neville said that stay-at-home orders are leading to a Gestapo-like mentality, a comment he made on "The Peter Boyles Show."
Colorado Springs lawmakers are bumping up against principles of public safety and individual rights as the state prepares to gradually reopen the state after April 26.
The iconic East Colfax Avenue restaurant and bar, which has been home to state Capitol regulars for more than 20 years, has been sold, but its former co-owner, Helen Patterson, says not to worry.
State, federal and local officials engaged in the fist shaking and hand wringing Friday about how federal coronavirus relief money will be divided up in the Colorado.
During his Friday briefing on the pandemic Gov. Jared Polis was asked whether tax dollars should support struggling media, especially in parts of the state where news and public information is endangered or extinct.
“Sully” served 16 years as a Douglas County commissioner, from 1989 to 2004, leaving a giant footprint on the county and its communities, according to those who knew him well.
The conservative organization and its Hispanic-focused LIBRE Initiative sent a letter to Colorado Gov. Jared Polis this week, reiterating the state-based guidance issue sent to policymakers nationwide last month.
The Colorado Department of Transportation is looking at a $50 million loss in its primary source of revenue, and combined losses could quickly add up to $100 million right away, "which is pretty grim," state highway director Shoshana Lew said.
The JBC letter said they intend to have the long bill, the School Finance Act and other budget bills completed by the end of May to allow state agencies, local governments and school districts time to finalize their own next year's budgets by June 30.
“The scientific evidence regarding internet and voting app systems is remarkably clear — these are not secure solutions for American elections,” Michael D. Fernandez, spokesman for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, said in a statement Thursday.
"The world has changed in so many ways, of course," said House Speaker KC Becker, "and one of those ways is the impact to state programs and services and how is the federal government filling those gaps."
She gained national attention when a CBD oil called "Charlotte's Web" alleviated her severe seizures that started when she was just three months old.
He didn't wear his trademark blue sneakers.
"This is not who we are as a Party," the 17 Republican officials wrote to Vickie Tonkins, the El Paso County GOP chairwoman, in a scathing email obtained by Colorado Politics, after she asked in a social media post if the coronavirus pandemic could be a plot to deceive the public.
If things go according to plan, Justin Everett will be up late next year, reading every word in every bill introduced in the Colorado House of Representatives, and when the legislation comes up for a vote, he'll give a good share of it a thumbs down.