Every session of the Colorado Legislature has its winners and losers, but sorting them out is an “eye of the beholder thing” to borrow a phrase from Grand Junction’s GOP Sen. Ray Scott.
For example, House Bill 1242 would have given Coloradans a chance to vote on a state sales-tax increase dedicated to improving transportation infrastructure, but it died in a Senate committee. Anti-tax groups in the state cheered it as a win, while we felt it made losers of anyone who thinks good roads are an important investment in the state’s economic future.
That bill’s demise, however, paved the way for the session’s biggest accomplishment — Senate Bill 267, which turned the state’s hospital provider fee into a standalone government enterprise, freeing up money for other programs and averting a crisis over funding for rural hospitals. Among other things, this “kitchen sink” spending measure provides $2 billion in bonds to pay for road projects. It also directs money to rural schools.