Last week, state Rep. Polly Lawrence, R-Roxborough Park, was elected chairwoman of the Council of State Governments West Westrends board.

On its website, the organization describes itself as a non-profit, non-partisan organization that serves the Western legislatures of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, the Pacific islands of American Samoa, the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands and Guam. Associate members include the Canadian provinces of Alberta and British Columbia.

“The Westrends board brings together elected officials from more than a dozen Western states to talk about issues ranging from economic development, water and transportation, and I am honored to serve as chairwoman for such a prestigious and impactful organization,” Lawrence said in a brief statement. “With the new administration seeking to lower the cost of Medicaid and expand infrastructure construction, this board can be a valuable resource to help Western state governments incorporate new policy changes.”

Through a variety of programs and services offered to legislators and legislative staff, the group facilitates regional cooperation, exchange of information and fosters the strengthening of legislative institutions among its 13 member states.

Lawrence was first elected to the Colorado House in 2012 and defeated Democrat Richard Opler in this year’s general election.

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