Colorado Capitol dome

The Colorado Capitol dome rises above the state legislature from January to May each year.

Reps. Alex Valdez and Mary Young with Sens. Robert Rodriguez and Dominick Moreno will serve on a task force charged with recommending on how the state should spend some $700 million in federal relief funds, Democratic legislative leaders announced Wednesday.

The Economic Recovery and Relief Task Force, created by Senate Bill 291 and authorized by a resolution from the General Assembly’s leadership two weeks ago, is charged with developing recommendations on allocating Colorado's share of American Rescue Plan Act funds.

Along with the quartet of Democrats — Valdez and Rodriguez of Denver, Moreno of Commerce City and Young of Greeley — the panel will feature two Republican lawmakers from the Office of Economic Development and International Trade and the Office of State Planning and Budgeting.

Senate Republican leadership name Sen. Larry Liston, R-Colorado Springs, to the panel. House Republicans have not yet named an appointee.

The task force will be able to fall back on the expertise of a subpanel of economists, which will feature two appointees from Democratic lawmakers as well as one each from Republicans, Gov. Jared Polis and OEDIT. Those economists must be named by Sept. 15.

Per the resolution, the panel of economists is directed to “analyze and synthesize data on the current state of the state’s economy, identifying ongoing challenges with the state’s recovery and opportunities for larger growth in specific sectors or industries, and outlining the underlying issues that are contributing to the overall economic gaps that are inhibiting recovery and growth.”

The economists must also issue a report on policies for the task force to vote on and submit to Polis and lawmakers before the next legislative session.

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