A legislative committee gave a formal go-ahead to the process that determines how the state will spend nearly $700 million in federal money.
The bipartisan Executive Committee of the Legislative Council will create the Economic Recovery Task Force made up of legislators and representatives from the Department of Economic Development and International Trade and the Office of State Planning and Budgeting.
Legislative leaders will name the members of task force by Sept. 8 and the subpanel by Sept, 15. The task force will hold a series of public meetings before delivering its recommendations by Dec. 17, 2021, followed by a full report to the General Assembly and the governor by Jan. 13.
That panel will be supported by a subpanel of economists to offer guidance on how to best stimulate the economy with the windfall, while helping people who need relief.
The state expects to get about $3.8 billion from the American Rescue Plan Act. Legislators spent much of the last legislative session figuring out how to hand out other state and federal stimulus dollars.
“This pandemic has thrown us one curveball after another, impacting parts of our state and sectors of our economy in different ways,” House Speaker Alec Garnett, D-Denver, said in a statement. “As the effects of the pandemic continue to shift and Colorado recovers, we are setting up a task force to look at our economy, identify gaps in prior relief and propose new stimulus to help our state build back stronger."
Senate President Leroy Garcia, D-Pueblo, pointed to the legislature's work this year.
"Today, we’re setting up a task force that will help us continue on our path toward a resilient economic recovery, helping us to fill in gaps that will support those hardest hit by the pandemic, get our economy back on track, and deliver relief where it’s needed most,” Garcia stated.