August 18, 2017

Colorado Court of Appeals: Double Recovery Not Considered in Forum Non Conveniens Determination

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Cox v. Sage Hospitality Resources, LLC on Thursday, May 4, 2017.

Forum Non Conveniens—Judicial Inefficiency—Double Recovery.

Cox, a Colorado resident, stayed at a hotel in California owned by defendant Sage Hospitality Resources, LLC. Sage’s members are Colorado residents, and its principal place of business is in Denver. WS HDM, LLC, incorporated in Delaware and licensed to do business in California, owns and operates the hotel. Cox fell on the hotel property and fractured his femur. Cox sued Sage in Denver District Court and WS HDM in California state court. Sage’s motion to dismiss the action in Denver District Court under the doctrine of forum non conveniens was granted.

On appeal, Cox argued that the Denver District Court erred in granting Sage’s motion to dismiss because there were no unusual circumstances sufficient to overcome the strong presumption in favor of Colorado courts hearing cases brought by Colorado residents. Colorado law is clear that the doctrine of forum non conveniens has “only the most limited application in Colorado courts.” Thus, unless there are “most unusual circumstances,” a Colorado resident’s choice of a Colorado forum will not be disturbed. Cox is a Colorado resident and claims to prefer to sue Sage in Colorado. Even though Cox filed a related suit in California state court, the existence of that lawsuit does not trump Cox’s choice of forum in Colorado. Further, the California state court suit is against a different defendant, and the record does not indicate that the joinder of Sage in Cox’s California state court suit is mandatory. Nor does the risk of double recovery overcome the presumption in favor of Colorado courts hearing suits filed by Colorado resident plaintiffs. The Denver District Court erred in dismissing Cox’s action.

The judgment was reversed and the case was remanded.

Summary provided courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Bills Regarding Hearsay Exception, Free Speech on College Campuses, Juvenile Court Jurisdiction, and More Signed

On Tuesday, April 4, 2017, the governor signed 16 bills into law. He also signed 14 bills into law on March 30, and 12 bills on March 23. To date, the governor has signed 122 bills into law.

Some of the bills recently signed include a bill clarifying the hearsay exception for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities, a bill correcting the Colorado Uniform Trust Decanting Act, a bill clarifying that a juvenile court has jurisdiction to issue civil protection orders in dependency and neglect cases, a bill clarifying a student’s right to free speech on college campuses, and more. The bills signed since March 23 are summarized here.

April 4, 2017

  • HB 17-1051“Concerning Modernization of the Colorado ‘Procurement Code’,” by Reps. Bob Rankin & Alec Garnett and Sens. Andy Kerr & Don Coram. The bill reviews the entirety of the Colorado Procurement Code and makes several updates in an effort to modernize the Code.
  • HB 17-1101“Concerning the Creation of the Youth Corrections Monetary Incentives Award Program in the Division of Youth Corrections,” by Rep. Paul Rosenthal and Sens. Nancy Todd & Kevin Priola. The bill authorizes the Division of Youth Corrections to establish, at its discretion, a youth corrections monetary incentives award program. The purpose of the program is to provide monetary awards and incentives for academic, social, and psychological achievement to juveniles who were formerly committed to the Division to assist and encourage them in moving forward in positive directions in life.
  • HB 17-1103“Concerning a State Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Historic Aircraft on Loan for Public Display,” by Reps. Dan Nordberg & Dan Pabon and Sens. Dominick Moreno & Bob Gardner. The bill creates a state sales and use tax exemption for a historic aircraft that is on loan for public display, demonstration, educational, or museum promotional purposes in the state provided certain conditions are met.
  • HB 17-1107“Concerning the Implementation of a New Computer System by the Division of Motor Vehicles to Facilitate the Division’s Administration of the Operation of Motor Vehicles in the State,” by Reps. Dan Thurlow & Jeff Bridges and Sen. Beth Martinez Humenik. The bill makes statutory changes regarding implementation of a new computer system.
  • HB 17-1109“Concerning Prosecuting in One Jurisdiction a Person who has Committed Sexual Assaults Against a Child in Different Jurisdictions,” by Reps. Terri Carver & Jessie Danielson and Sens. John Cooke & Rhonda Fields. The bill allows a prosecutor to charge and bring a pattern-offense case for all such assaults in any jurisdiction where one of the acts occurred, rather than prosecuting each act in the jurisdiction in which it occurred.
  • HB 17-1111“Concerning Allowing Juvenile Courts to Enter Civil Protection Orders in Dependency and Neglect Cases,” by Rep. Susan Beckman and Sen. Rhonda Fields. The bill clarifies that the juvenile court has jurisdiction to enter civil protection orders in dependency and neglect actions in the same manner as district and county courts. The court must follow the same procedures for the issuance of the civil protection orders and use standardized forms.
  • HB 17-1149“Concerning Special License Plates Issued to Members of the United States Military who Served in the United States Army Special Forces,” by Reps. Tony Exum & Dafna Michaelson Jenet and Sen. Bob Gardner. The bill clarifies which individuals are eligible for a U.S. Army Special Forces license plate.
  • HB 17-1151“Concerning the Regulation of Electrical Assisted Bicycles,” by Reps. Chris Hansen & Yeulin Willett and Sens. Owen Hill & Andy Kerr. The bill defines electrical assisted bicycles and enacts several regulations regarding manufacture, labeling, and government oversight of such bicycles.
  • HB 17-1152: “Concerning the Authority of a Federal Mineral Lease District to Manage a Portion of the Direct Distribution of Money from the Local Government Mineral Impact Fund to Counties for the Benefit of Impacted Areas,” by Reps. Yeulin Willett & Diane Mitsch Bush and Sen. Ray Scott. The bill gives a federal mineral lease district the option to invest a portion of the funding it receives from the local government mineral impact fund in a fund.
  • SB 17-015“Concerning the Unlawful Advertising of Marijuana,” by Sen. Irene Aguilar and Rep. Dan Pabon. The bill makes it a level 2 drug misdemeanor for a person not licensed to sell medical or retail marijuana to advertise for the sale of marijuana or marijuana concentrate.
  • SB 17-016“Concerning the Optional Creation of a Child Protection Team by a County,” by Sens. Cheri Jahn & Tim Neville and Reps. Tracy Kraft-Tharp & Dan Nordberg. The bill allows counties and groups of contiguous counties to choose whether to establish a child protection team, at the discretion of the county director or the directors of a contiguous group of counties.
  • SB 17-048“Concerning Requiring an Officer to Arrest an Offender who Escapes from an Intensive Supervision Program in the Department of Corrections,” by Sen. John Cooke & Rep. Yeulin Willett. The bill requires a peace officer who believes that an offender in an intensive supervision program has committed an escape by knowingly removing or tampering with an electronic monitoring device to immediately seek a warrant for the offender’s arrest or arrest the offender without undue delay if the offender is in the presence of the officer.
  • SB 17-062“Concerning the Right to Free Speech on Campuses of Public Institutions of Higher Education,” by Sen. Tim Neville and Reps. Jeff Bridges & Stephen Humphrey. The bill prohibits public institutions of higher education from limiting or restricting student expression in a student forum, and prohibits those institutions for penalizing free speech.
  • SB 17-066“Concerning Clarifying Retroactively the Authority of a Municipality to Employ a Police Force without Going Through Sunrise Review,” by Sens. Rhonda Fields & John Cooke and Reps. Steve Lebsock & Lori Saine. The bill clarifies that municipalities may employ a police force without going through the review process for groups seeking peace officer status.
  • SB 17-076“Concerning Authority to Spend Money in the Public School Performance Fund,” by Sen. Kevin Priola and Rep. James Coleman. The bill allows the Department of Education to spend money received as gifts, grants, and donations for monetary awards to certain high-performing public schools and in purchasing tangible items of recognition for the schools.
  • SB 17-125“Concerning Allowing Certain Persons who Have Been Exonerated of Crimes to Receive in Lump-Sum Payments Compensation that is Owed to Them by the State,” by Sen. Lucia Guzman and Rep. Dan Pabon. The bill allows an exonerated person to elect to receive the remaining balance of the state’s duty of compensation in a lump sum rather than periodic payments.

March 30, 2017

  • HB 17-1059: “Concerning the Scheduled Repeal of Reports by the Department of Public Safety to the General Assembly,” by Rep. Dan Thurlow and Sen. Jack Tate. The bill continues indefinitely statutory reporting requirements.
  • HB 17-1076“Concerning Rule-making by the State Engineer Regarding Permits for the Use of Water Artificially Recharged into Nontributary Groundwater Aquifers,” by Rep. Jeni Arndt and Sens. Stephen Fenberg & Don Coram. The bill adds a requirement that the state engineer promulgate rules for the permitting and use of waters artificially recharged into nontributary groundwater aquifers.
  • HB 17-1147“Concerning Defining the Purposes of Community Corrections Programs,” by Rep. Lang Sias and Sen. Daniel Kagan. The bill statutorily defines the purpose of community corrections as to further all purposes of sentencing and improve public safety.
  • HB 17-1180: “Concerning Requirements for the Tuition Assistance Program for Students Enrolled in Career and Technical Education Certificate Programs,” by Reps. Faith Winter & Polly Lawrence and Sens. Andy Kerr & Tim Neville. The bill allows students in technical education programs to receive tuition assistance even if they do not meet credit hour requirements for the federal Pell grant program.
  • SB 17-024“Concerning the Hearsay Exception for Persons with an Intellectual and Developmental Disability when a Defendant is Charged with a Crime Against an At-risk Person,” by Sen. Rhonda Fields and Rep. Dave Young. The bill clarifies that the hearsay exception for a person with an intellectual and developmental disability applies if the defendant is charged under the increased penalties for crimes against at-risk persons.
  • SB 17-031“Concerning the Scheduled Repeal of Reports by the Department of Corrections to the General Assembly,” by Sen. Jack Tate and Rep. Jeni Arndt. The bill continues indefinitely reporting requirements for the Department of Corrections and makes other changes.
  • SB 17-033“Concerning the Authority of a Professional Nurse to Delegate Dispensing Authority for Over-the-Counter Medications,” by Sen. Irene Aguilar and Rep. Polly Lawrence. The bill allows a professional nurse to delegate to another person, after appropriate training, the dispensing authority of an over-the-counter medication to a minor with the signed consent of the minor’s parent or guardian.
  • SB 17-073“Concerning Promotion of the Runyon-Fountain Lakes State Wildlife Area,” by Sen. Leroy Garcia and Rep. Donald Valdez. The bill directs stakeholders interested in the Runyon-Fountain lakes state wildlife area (including the Colorado division of parks and wildlife, the city of Pueblo, and the Pueblo conservancy district) to cooperatively engage in a long-term process to promote the maximum beneficial development and maintenance of the area.
  • SB 17-110“Concerning Expanding the Number of Unrelated Children to No More than Four to Qualify for License-exempt Family Child Care,” by Sens. Larry Crowder & John Kefalas and Reps. James Wilson & Jessie Danielson. The bill expands the circumstances under which an individual can care for children from multiple families for less than 24 hours without obtaining a child care license.
  • SB 17-122“Concerning the Duties of the Fallen Heroes Memorial Commission, and, in Connection Therewith, Repealing the Commission and Shifting all Remaining Responsibilities to the State Capitol Building Advisory Committee,” by Sen. Jack Tate and Reps. Terri Carver & Jessie Danielson. The bill repeals the fallen heroes memorial commission and requires the state capitol building advisory committee to take on any remaining duties of the commission.
  • SB 17-123“Concerning a High School Diploma Endorsement for Biliteracy,” by Sens. Rachel Zenzinger & Kevin Priola and Reps. James Wilson & Millie Hamner. The bill authorizes a school district, BOCES, or institute charter high school to grant a diploma endorsement in biliteracy to a student who demonstrates proficiency in English and at least one foreign language.
  • SB 17-124“Concerning a Correction to the ‘Colorado Uniform Trust Decanting Act’,” by Sens. Beth Martinez Humenik & Dominick Moreno and Reps. Edie Hooten & Dan Nordberg. The bill changes one reference to the second trust to the first trust to conform with the Uniform Law Commission’s corrected version of the Act.
  • SB 17-134“Concerning the Exclusion of Certain Areas of an Alcohol Beverage Licensee’s Operation in the Application of Penalties for Certain Violations,” by Sen. Jack Tate and Reps. Dan Nordberg & Leslie Herod. The bill limits penalties for violations relating to the sale of alcohol beverages to a visibly intoxicated or underage person that occur in a sales room for licensees operating a beer wholesaler, winery, limited winery, or distillery, or in a retail establishment, for licensees operating a brew pub, vintner’s restaurant, or distillery pub.
  • SB 17-194“Concerning an Exception to the Statutory Deadlines for Making Income Tax Refunds for Returns Suspected of Refund-related Fraud,” by Sen. Tim Neville and Rep. Dan Pabon. The bill specifies that if the department of revenue makes a determination, in good faith, that there is a suspicion of identity theft or other refund-related fraud, then the statutory deadlines do not apply.

March 23, 2017

  • HB 17-1015: “Concerning Clarifying the Manner in Which Reductions of Inmates’ Sentences are Administered in County Jails,” by Rep. Edie Hooten and Sen. John Cooke. The bill clarifies and consolidates various statutory sections concerning reductions of sentences for county jail inmates.
  • HB 17-1040: “Concerning Authorizing the Interception of Communication Relating to a Crime of Human Trafficking,” by Reps. Paul Lundeen & Mike Foote and Sens. Cheri Jahn & Kevin Priola. The bill adds human trafficking to the list of crimes for which a judge can issue an order authorizing the interception of certain communications.
  • HB 17-1044“Concerning Autocycles, and, in Connection Therewith, Clarifying that an Autocycle is a Type of Motorcycle and Requiring Autocycle Drivers and Passengers to Use Safety Belts and, if Applicable, Child Safety Restraints,” by Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush and Sen. Nancy Todd. The bill amends the definition of “autocycle” and amends the restraint requirements for autocycles.
  • HB 17-1048“Concerning the Prosecution of Insurance Fraud,” by Rep. Mike Foote and Sen. Jim Smallwood. The bill amends language describing the criminal offense of insurance fraud.
  • HB 17-1065“Concerning a Clarification of Requirements Governing the Formation of Metropolitan Districts, and, in Connection Therewith, Limiting the Inclusion of Agricultural Land Within a Metropolitan District Providing Park and Recreational Services and Clarifying Signature Requirements Governing Judicial Approval of a Petition for Organization of a Proposed Special District,” by Rep. Kimmi Lewis and Sen. Vicki Marble. The bill subjects metropolitan districts to certain limitations regarding parks and recreation and clarifies which signatures can be counted by the district court in determining validity.
  • HB 17-1071“Concerning a Process for Repayment of Certain Criminal Monetary Amounts Ordered by the Court to be Paid Following Conviction,” by Reps. Cole Wist & Pete Lee and Sens. Daniel Kagan & Bob Gardner. The bill establishes a process for a defendant who has paid a monetary amount due for a criminal conviction in a district or county court to request a refund of the amount paid if the conviction was overturned or the restitution award was reversed.
  • HB 17-1092“Concerning Contracts Involving License Royalties with Proprietors of Retail Establishments that Publicly Perform Music,” by Rep. Steve Lebsock and Sen. Jack Tate. The bill expands the law covering contracts between performing rights societies and proprietors of retail establishments to cover investigations and negotiations between the two.
  • HB 17-1133“Concerning the Annual Report on Filing-Office Rules by the Secretary of State,” by Reps. Dan Nordberg & Edie Hooten and Sens. Dominick Moreno & Jack Tate. The bill repeals the requirement that the secretary of state annually report to the governor and legislature regarding filing-office rules promulgated under the “Uniform Commercial Code – Secured Transactions.”
  • HB 17-1136“Concerning Consistent Statutory Language for Electronic Filing of Taxes,” by Rep. Mike Foote and Sen. Bob Gardner. The bill changes the EFT and electronic filing requirements in the taxation statutes for consistency, specifying in all cases that the department may require EFT and electronic filing and that the department may promulgate rules to implement EFT and electronic filing.
  • HB 17-1148“Concerning Applications for Registration to Cultivate Industrial Hemp,” by Rep. Jeni Arndt and Sen. John Cooke. The bill adds a requirement to existing registration requirements that applicants to cultivate industrial hemp for commercial purposes provide the names of each officer, director, member, partner, or owner of 10% or more in the entity applying for registration and any person managing or controlling the entity.
  • HB 17-1157“Concerning Reliance by a Financial Institution on a Certificate of Trust,” by Reps. Tracy Kraft-Tharp & Dan Nordberg and Sen. Kevin Priola. The bill requires trustees to provide additional information in a certificate of trust when trustees open a trust deposit account and permits the bank to rely on the certificate of trust absent knowledge of fraud.
  • SB 17-008“Concerning Legalizing Certain Knives,” by Sen. Owen Hill and Rep. Steve Lebsock. The bill removes gravity knives and switchblades from the definition of illegal weapons.

For a list of the governor’s 2017 legislative decisions, click here.

Mental Health Bill Vetoed; Restaurant Safety Bill Sent to Secretary of State Without Signature

On Thursday, June 9, 2016, Governor Hickenlooper vetoed SB 16-169, “Concerning Changes Related to the Seventy-Two-Hour Emergency Mental Health Procedure.” SB 16-169 would have made several changes to the procedures for 72 hour mental health holds for people who are dangerous to themselves or others, including allowing them to be detained in law enforcement facilities instead of hospitals. The governor vetoed the bill, citing concerns about due process protections for persons having mental health emergencies.

Governor Hickenlooper also sent a bill to the Secretary of State without a signature on Thursday. HB 16-1401, “Concerning the Regulation of Retail Food Establishments,” will become law at 12:01 a.m. on June 11, 2016, and will take effect on August 10, 2016. The bill increases the annual licensing fees paid by retail food establishments beginning January 1, 2017, with provisions for additional fee increases in 2018 and 2019. The bill also creates a new license for a limited retail food establishment that prepares or serves food that does not require time or temperature control for safety, provides self-service beverages, offers prepackaged commercially prepared food and beverages requiring time or temperature control or only reheating commercially prepared foods that require time or temperature control for safety for retail sale to consumers, and requires the CDPHE to ensure significant statewide compliance with the federal Food and Drug Administration’s voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program standards. Governor Hickenlooper cited concerns raised by county governments among his reasons for neither signing nor vetoing the bill.

For a complete list of Governor Hickenlooper’s 2016 legislative actions, click here.

SB 16-197: Allowing Liquor-License Drugstores to Open Five Additional Stores on Same License

On April 22, 2016, Sen. Pat Steadman introduced SB 16-197Concerning the Retail Sale of Alcohol Beverages. The bill was assigned to the Senate Business, Labor, & Technology Committee.

The bill establishes a number of requirements with respect to the licensing of alcohol retailers, as well as establishing requirements for the distribution and sale of alcohol by licensed wholesalers, retailers, and their employees.

First, on or after January 1, 2017 and before January 1, 2027, a liquor-licensed drugstore (“LLD”) seeking to obtain an additional LLD license must apply to the state and local licensing authorities, as part of a single application, for a transfer of ownership of two retail liquor stores, a change of location, and a merger and conversion of the two retail liquor stores. A LLD licensee may make said application only if: (1) the LLD pays a minimum purchase price of $350,000 per retail liquor store to acquire ownership of the two licensed retail liquor stores; (2) the two retail liquor stores are located within the same local licensing authority jurisdiction as the premises for which the applicant is seeking a LLD license; and (3) the premises for which the LLD license is sought is not located within 2,500 feet of another licensed premises.

Further, in making its determination on the application, the local licensing authority may consider the reasonable requirements of the neighborhood. A local licensing authority may conduct a hearing on the application for transfer of ownership after notifying the applicant of the hearing at least 10 days before the hearing by posting – or directing the license applicant to post – a notice of the hearing in a conspicuous location on the licensed premises for a least 10 consecutive days before the hearing. A LLD applying for a license merger and conversion is ineligible for a temporary permit, and a local licensing authority shall not issue a temporary permit to a LLD that has acquired ownership of licensed retail stores in accordance with this section of the bill.  The state licensing authority shall establish fees for a transfer or ownership, change of location, and license merger and conversion not to exceed $1000.

Second, a LLD on or after January 1, 2017 shall have a least one permitted manager conduct the LLD’s purchase of alcohol from a licensed wholesaler. The state licensing authority may issue a manager’s permit to an individual who is employed by a LLD and who will be in actual control of the alcohol beverage operations, as long as the individual demonstrates that he or she: (1) has not been convicted of a crime involving the sale or distribution of alcohol within 8 years of submission of the application; (2) has not been convicted of a felony within 5 years of submission of the application; (3) is at least 21 years of age; (4) has not had a manager’s permit or similar permit revoked by the issuing authority within 3 years of submission of the application; and (5) is certified as a responsible alcohol vender. It is unlawful for an individual with a manager’s permit to be directly or indirectly interested in a licensed wholesaler, a licensed manufactured, or any business that has had its license revoked by the state issuing authority within 8 years of submission of the application for a manager’s permit. For each manager’s permit, an annual fee of $100 shall be paid in advance to the Department of Revenue. The state licensing authority shall also establish fees for applications for manager’s permits.

Third, an employee of a LLD who is involved in selling alcohol must obtain and maintain a certification as a responsible alcohol vender. An employee of a LLD who is under 21 years of age shall not have any contact with malt, vinous, and spirituous liquors (“liquors” or “liquor”) offered for sale. A LLD shall not store alcohol off the licensed premises. A LLD shall not comingle the liquors it offers with any other products, and the LLD shall shelve and display the liquors separately from other nonalcoholic beverages.

Fourth, a person licensed to sell malt, vinous, and spirituous liquors (“liquors” or “liquor”) shall: (1) not sell liquors at a price below the cost to purchase the liquors; (2) not allow consumers to purchase liquors at a self-checkout; (3) require purchasers of liquors to present a valid, government-issued identification verifying the purchaser is 21 years of age; and (4) not sell clothing or accessories imprinted with advertising, logos, slogans, trademarks, or messages related to alcoholic beverages. A person licensed on or after January 1, 2017, shall not purchase liquors from a wholesaler on credit, and shall effect payment upon delivery of the liquors.

Fifth, a licensed wholesaler: (1) shall make all deliveries of alcohol to LLD in compliance with the bill; (2) shall take orders for alcohol only from a permitted manager of a LLD; (3) may unload alcohol at a LLD’s loading dock at any time that the location is open to the public; (4) shall make available to all licensed retailers in the state all liquors and brands of alcohol sold by the wholesaler; and (5) may establish purchase requirements, unless the requirements have the effect of excluding a majority of licensed retailers from purchasing a brand of alcohol.

Seventh, in addition to selling liquors, a retail liquor store may sell, without limitation: nonalcoholic beverages; liquor-filled candy; snack food items; kegs and growlers; beer/wine/spirit-making kits and supplies; lemons, limes, cherries, olives, and other food items used in preparing or garnishing alcoholic beverages; clothing or accessories imprinted with advertising, logos, slogans, trademarks, or messages related to alcoholic beverages; lottery tickets; tobacco products; and other merchandise not related to the consumption of alcohol, but only if the annual gross revenues from the sale of such other merchandise does not exceed 20% of the store’s total annual gross revenues. A retail liquor store shall not sell retail marijuana.

Eighth, an owner, part owner, shareholder, or person directly or indirectly interested in a LLD may have an interest in (1) up to five additional LLD licenses if obtained on or after January 1, 2017 and before January 1, 2027, and (2) an unlimited number of additional LLD licenses if obtained on or after January 1, 2027. An owner, part owner, shareholder, or person directly or indirectly interested in a retail liquor store may have an interest in up to five additional retail liquor store licenses.

Tenth, it is unlawful for any licensed retailer: (1) to sell fermented malt beverages to any person between the hours of midnight and 8:00 AM (previously, midnight to 5:00 AM); (2) to employ a person who is at least 18 years of age but under 21 years of age to sell or dispense liquor, unless the employee is supervised by another person who is on the licensed premises and is at least 21 years of age; (3) if licensed as a tavern, retail liquor store, or LLD, to permit an employee who is under 21 years of age to sell liquor; or (4) if licensed as a LLD, to permit an employee who is under 21 years of age to have any contact with liquors offered for sale, or sold and removed from, the licensed premises of the LLD. It is not unlawful for a retail licensee or his or her employee to sell liquor to a consumer who is or reasonably appears to be over the age of 50 and who failed to present identification.

Lastly, the bill removes the requirement that a “fermented malt beverage” be no more than three and two-tenths percent alcohol by weight or four percent alcohol by volume. With respect to “malt liquors,” the bill replaces the requirement that the malt liquor contain no more than three and two-tenths percent alcohol by weight or four percent alcohol by volume with the requirement that the malt liquor contain “not less than one-half of one percent alcohol by volume.”

Max Montag is a 2016 J.D. Candidate at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law.

Bills Regarding Name Change After Divorce, Unattended Remote Vehicles, and More Signed

On Thursday, March 31, 2016, Governor Hickenlooper signed 8 bills into law, and he signed three more bills on Friday, April 1. To date, the governor has signed 70 bills into law this legislative session. The signed bills include a bill to simplify the name change process for parties to dissolutions of marriage or legal separation if those parties did not request a name change during the dissolution proceedings, a bill to change the name of “area vocational schools” to “area technical colleges,” a bill allowing the use of remote starter systems in unattended vehicles, and a bill allowing reimbursement of travel expenses of members of the Colorado Human Trafficking Council.

March 31, 2016

  • SB 16-121 – Concerning the Percentage of Tuition Revenue that an Institution of Higher Education is Authorized to Pledge for Contracts for the Advancement of Money, by Sen. Jack Tate and Rep. Alec Garnett. The bill allows the governing board of an institution of higher education to pledge up to 100 percent of tuition revenues to fund capital projects.
  • HB 16-1046 – Concerning the Response to Hazardous Substance Incidents Under Designated Emergency Response Authority Responsibility, by Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp and Sen. Randy Baumgardner. The bill requires local governments to report to the Colorado State Patrol who they designate as emergency response personnel for hazardous substance incidents, and narrows the appropriate response.
  • HB 16-1061 – Concerning a Requirement that the Transportation Infrastructure Needs of Federal Military Installations be Given Full Consideration During the Preparation of the Comprehensive Statewide Transportation Plan, by Reps. Terri Carver & Dan Nordberg and Sen. Nancy Todd. The bill requires the Colorado Department of Transportation to coordinate with federal military installations within the state when developing statewide transportation plans.
  • HB 16-1082 – Concerning Area Vocational Schools and, in Connection Therewith, Changing the Name of Area Vocational Schools to Area Technical Colleges and Adding Representation for Area Technical Colleges to Certain Boards, by Reps. Alec Garnett & Yeulin Willett and Sen. Nancy Todd. The bill changes all statutory references to “area vocational schools” to “area technical colleges” and adds a representative of area technical colleges to the Concurrent Enrollment Advisory Board and the Colorado Workforce Development Council.
  • HB 16-1085 – Concerning Simplifying the Process for Returning to a Prior Name After a Decree of Dissolution or Legal Separation Has Been Entered, by Rep. Dan Thurlow and Sen. Jack Tate. The bill makes it easier for a person to restore a previous name after a divorce or separation of he or she did not request the name change during the dissolution or separation proceedings.
  • HB 16-1122 – Concerning the Use of Remote Starter Systems on Unattended Vehicles, by Rep. Justin Everett and Sens. Owen Hill & Vicki Marble. The bill exempts vehicles with remote starter systems from the law prohibiting unattended idling as long as the vehicle owner takes precautions against theft.
  • HB 16-1144 – Concerning Transparency in Postsecondary Courses Offered to High School Students, by Reps. Jon Becker & Brittany Pettersen and Sen. Kevin Grantham. Currently, local education providers are required to notify parents and students annually when qualified students are eligible for concurrent enrollment in high school and college. The bill requires local education providers to notify parents and students if the students’ college classes do not qualify for concurrent enrollment.
  • HB 16-1151 – Concerning the Expansion of Penalty Mitigation Under the Alcohol Beverage Laws for Vendors Meeting the Definition of a “Responsible Vendor” as Provided by Law, by Rep. Dan Pabon and Sen. Chris Holbert. The bill requires state and local licensing authorities to consider licensees’ responsible alcohol vendor training as a mitigating factor for certain violations of state liquor laws.

April 1, 2016

  • HB 16-1033 – Concerning the Colorado Human Trafficking Council, by Reps. Beth McCann & Dan Nordberg and Sens. John Kefalas & Linda Newell. The bill allows members of the Colorado Human Trafficking Council to be reimbursed for their travel expenses.
  • HB 16-1038 – Concerning Optional Affiliation with the Fire and Police Pension Association by a County Sheriff Department that Does Not Participate in Social Security, by Reps. Jovan Melton & Joseph Salazar and Sen. Matt Jones. The bill allows counties to elect coverage in the Fire and Police Pension Association even when they decline to participate in Social Security.
  • HB 16-1083 – Concerning the Role and Mission of Western State Colorado University, by Reps. J. Paul Brown & Millie Hamner and Sens. Kerry Donovan & Kevin Grantham. The bill changes the admission standard of Western State Colorado University from “moderately selective” to “selective.”

For all of Governor Hickenlooper’s 2016 legislative decisions, click here.

Final Bills of 2015 Legislative Session Signed; Three Sent to Secretary of State Without Signature

CapitolbuildingOn Friday, June 5, 2015, Governor Hickenlooper signed 60 bills into law and allowed three bills to become law without a signature. To date, Governor Hickenlooper has signed 362 bills into law, vetoed three bills, and allowed three to become law without a signature. The bills signed Friday are summarized here.

  • SB 15-011 – Concerning the Pilot Program for Persons with Spinal Cord Injuries Relating to the Use of Complimentary and Alternative Medicine, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Nancy Todd and Rep. Dianne Primavera. The bill continues the Medicaid Spinal Cord Injury Alternative Medicine Pilot Program and expands the program so it can serve additional clients.
  • SB 15-090Concerning the Adoption of Standards Governing Temporary Permits on Motor Vehicles for Effective Readability, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Nancy Todd and Rep. Max Tyler. The bill requires that temporary motor vehicle plates meet the same requirements regarding readability as permanent plates.
  • HB 15-1310 – Concerning the Authority of the Division of Parks and Wildlife to Acquire Real Property for their Garfield County Administrative Office and Public Service Center, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Bob Rankin and Sen. Randy Baumgardner. The bill allows the Division of Parks and Wildlife to purchase a specific property in Garfield County.
  • HB 15-1318 – Concerning the Requirements for Administering a Single Medicaid Waiver for Home- and Community-Based Services for Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Dave Young and Sen. Kevin Grantham. The bill requires the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing to consolidate two waiver programs for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
  • HB 15-1252 – Concerning an Extension of the Number of Years the Individual Income Tax Return Includes a Voluntary Contribution Designation for the Colorado Healthy Rivers Fund, by Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush and Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg. The bill extends the voluntary check-box contribution for the Colorado Healthy Rivers Fund until 2020.
  • HB 15-1166 – Concerning the Creation of a Tributary Groundwater Monitoring Network in the South Platte River Alluvial Aquifer, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Lori Saine & Jeni James Arndt and Sen. Vicki Marble. The bill creates a basin-wide tributary groundwater monitoring network in the South Platte River alluvial aquifer based on recommendations from a CWCB report.
  • HB 15-1283 – Concerning Marijuana Testing, and, in Connection Therewith, Creating a Reference Lab by December 31, 2015, that will House a Library of Testing Methodologies and Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Steve Lebsock and Sen. Chris Holbert. The bill requires the Department of Public Health and Environment to develop and maintain a marijuana laboratory testing reference library.
  • HB 15-1368 – Concerning the Creation of a Cross-System Response for Behavioral Health Crises Pilot Program to Serve Individuals with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Dave Young and Sen. Kevin Grantham. The bill creates a pilot program to support collaborative approaches for individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities and a mental health or behavioral disorder.
  • HB 15-1247 – Concerning the Implementation of the Legislative Audit Committee’s Recommendations for Review of Dam Safety, by Rep. Lori Saine and Sen. Tim Neville. The bill increases the fees charged by the State Engineer for dam project design review.
  • HB 15-1248 – Concerning Limited Access by Private Child Placement Agencies to Records Relating to Child Abuse or Neglect for Purposes of Ensuring Safe Placements for Foster Children, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Jonathan Singer and Sen. Owen Hill. The bill permits one representative at each child placement agency to review records of potential foster parents for reports of abuse or neglect.
  • HB 15-1355 – Concerning Access to Personal Records Relating to a Person’s Family History, by Reps. Lori Saine & Jonathan Singer and Sens. Vicki Marble & Linda Newell. The bill allows an adult adoptee to access his or her birth certificate and that of his or her adult sibling in Colorado.
  • HB 15-1357 – Concerning the Establishment of the Ratio of Valuation for Assessment of Residential Real Property, by Reps. Lois Court & Brian DelGrosso and Sens. Tim Neville & Michael Johnston. The bill establishes the residential assessment rate for 2015-2016 and does not change it.
  • SB 15-020 – Concerning Education Regarding the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Assault, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Linda Newell and Rep. Beth McCann. The bill expands the duties of the School Safety Resource Center to include providing education and materials regarding awareness and prevention of child sexual assault.
  • SB 15-109 – Concerning the Mandatory Reporting of Mistreatment Against an Adult with a Disability, by Sen. Kevin Grantham and Rep. Dave Young. The bill expands the at-risk adult reporting requirements to include adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
  • SB 15-195 – Concerning Appropriating to the Department of Corrections Moneys Generated as Savings from the Awarding of Achievement Earned Time to Inmates, and, in Connection Therewith, Making and Reducing Appropriations, by Sen. Pat Steadman and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill limits the amount of earned time savings that may be used toward education and parole programs.
  • SB 15-196 – Concerning Measures to Ensure Industrial Hemp Remains Below a Delta-9 Tetrahydrocannabinol Concentration of No More than Three-Tenths of One Percent on a Dry Weight Basis, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sens. Vicki Marble & Pat Steadman and Reps. Steve Lebsock & Lois Saine. The bill expands the industrial hemp committee and imposes new regulations on industrial hemp.
  • SB 15-220 – Concerning Security for the Colorado General Assembly, by Sens. Morgan Carroll & Bill Cadman and Reps. Crisanta Duran & Brian DelGrosso. The bill requires the Colorado State Patrol to provide protection for the members of the General Assembly.
  • SB 15-256 – Concerning the Operation of the Legislative Committee that Oversees the Colorado Health Benefit Exchange, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Ellen Roberts and Rep. Beth McCann. The bill makes several changes to the Colorado health benefit exchange committee’s duties.
  • SB 15-115 – Concerning the Sunset Review of the Medical Marijuana Programs, by Sen. Owen Hill and Rep. Ellen Roberts. The bill continues the Medical Marijuana Code until 2019 and implements some changes to the program.
  • HB 15-1063 – Concerning Prohibited Communication Concerning Patents, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Dan Pabon and Sen. David Balmer. The bill establishes a framework for communications between parties regarding patent rights.
  • HB 15-1178 – Concerning the State Engineer’s Authority to Allow Well Users to Lower the Water Table in an Area that the State Engineer Determines is Experiencing Damaging High Groundwater Levels, and, in Connection Therewith, Establishing an Emergency Dewatering Grant Program for the Purpose of Lowering the Water Table in Areas of Gilcrest, Colorado, and Sterling, Colorado and Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Lori Saine & Stephen Humphrey and Sens. Vicki Marble & Jerry Sonnenberg. The bill establishes the Emergency Dewatering Grant Program for the emergency pumping of wells.
  • HB 15-1102 – Concerning the Expansion of the “Colorado Cottage Foods Act”, and, in Connection Therewith, Increasing the Food Products a Producer Can Sell Under the Act, Requiring an Additional Disclaimer, and Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Millie Hamner & Yeulin Willett and Sens. Kerry Donovan & Kevin Grantham. The bill divides the foods that can be produced under the Cottage Foods Act into two tiers.
  • SB 15-012 – Concerning the Treatment of Child Support for Purposes of the Colorado Works Program, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. John Kefalas and Rep. Brittany Pettersen. The bill allows the Department of Human Services to disregard child support income when determining eligibility for the TANF program.
  • HB 15-1219 – Concerning the Enterprise Zone Investment Tax Credit for Renewable Energy Products, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Beth McCann & Jon Becker and Sens. Mary Hodge & Jerry Sonnenberg. The bill allows a taxpayer who places a renewable energy product in an enterprise zone to receive a refund of the tax credit.
  • HB 15-1228 – Concerning the Special Fuel Excise Tax on Liquefied Petroleum Gas, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Diane Mitsch Bush & Jon Becker and Sen. Ray Scott. The bill makes several changes to the administration and collection of the special fuel excise tax program for liquefied petroleum.
  • HB 15-1350 – Concerning Performance Measures for Accrediting an Alternative Education Campus, by Rep. Brittany Pettersen and Sen. Owen Hill. The bill requires the Department of Education to convene stakeholder meetings to review statutes and rules related to performance indicators for the accreditation of alternative education campuses.
  • HB 15-1392 – Concerning Changes to the State’s Payroll System to Allow All State Employees to be Paid Twice a Month, by Reps. Dave Young & Jack Tate and Sens. Linda Newell & Tim Neville. The bill changes the pay schedule for all state employees to twice a month.
  • HB 15-1352 – Concerning Modifications to the Naturopathic Formulary of Medications that a Registered Naturopathic Doctor is Authorized to Use in the Practice of Naturopathic Medicine, by Reps. Joann Ginal & Kathleen Conti and Sens. Larry Crowder & Linda Newell. The bill expands the authority of naturopathic doctors in several ways.
  • HB 15-1353 – Concerning the Continuation of the Regulation of Conveyances, and, in Connection Therewith, Extending the Certification of Conveyances and Conveyance Mechanics, Contractors, and Inspectors of Elevators and Escalators Until July 1, 2022, by Rep. Alec Garnett and Sen. Beth Martinez Humenik. The bill extends the Elevator and Escalator Certification Act to regulate conveyances.
  • HB 15-1360 – Concerning the Use of Injection Therapy by Acupuncturists Licensed Pursuant to Article 29.5 of Title 12, Colorado Revised Statutes, by Rep. Joann Ginal and Sen. Kevin Lundberg. The bill allows licensed acupuncturists to practice injection therapy.
  • HB 15-1083 – Concerning Patient Financial Contributions for Physical Rehabilitation Services, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Dianne Primavera and Sen. Larry Crowder. The bill requires the Colorado Commission on Affordable Health Care to conduct a study of the costs of physical rehabilitation services.
  • HB 15-1261 – Concerning the Maximum Reserve for a Cash Fund with Fee Revenue, by Rep. Dave Young and Sens. Kevin Grantham & Pat Steadman. The bill alters the cash fund reserve requirement.
  • HB 15-1273 – Concerning Additional Comprehensive Reporting Requirements for School Discipline Reports, and, in Connection Therewith, Requiring a Post-Enactment Review of the Implementation of this Act and Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Polly Lawrence and Sen. Linda Newell. The bill adds sexual assaults and marijuana violations to the list of items that must be included in a safe schools report.
  • HB 15-1370 – Concerning Access to Certain Records of a County Department of Human or Social Services Containing Personal Identifying Information by an Auditor Conducting a Financial or Performance Audit of that Department, by Rep. Dianne Primavera and Sens. Lucia Guzman & Tim Neville. The bill permits an auditor access to all files of a county department of human or social services that are needed to conduct the audit.
  • SB 15-029 – Concerning a Study of Volunteer Firefighter Pension Plans in the State, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Jessie Ulibarri and Rep. Jovan Melton. The bill requires the state auditor to conduct a study of firefighter pension plans in Colorado.
  • SB 15-184 – Concerning Enforcement of Compulsory Education Requirements, by Sen. Chris Holbert and Rep. Rhonda Fields. The bill requires the chief judge in each judicial district to convene a meeting of stakeholders to find ways to address truancy other than detention.
  • SB 15-203 – Concerning Continuation of the Regulation of Debt-Management Service Providers by the Attorney General, and, in Connection Therewith, Implementing the Recommendations of the 2014 Sunset Report by the Department of Regulatory Agencies, by Sen. John Cooke and Rep. Dan Pabon. The bill continues the Uniform Debt-Management Services Act.
  • SB 15-228 – Concerning a Process for the Periodic Review of Provider Rates Under the “Colorado Medical Assistance Act”, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Pat Steadman and Rep. Bob Rankin. The bill establishes a process for the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing to review Medicare provider rates.
  • SB 15-261 – Concerning a Modification to the Statute that Specifies the Forms of Public Notice that a Public Utility May Provide Regarding a Change in the Public Utility’s Schedule of Charges to Allow a Request for an Alternative Form of Notice within the Same Formal Application that the Public Utility Files with the Public Utilities Commission When Applying for a Change in the Public Utility’s Schedule of Charges, by Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg and Rep. Dave Young. The bill allows public utilities to request rate changes during existing proceedings.
  • HB 15-1282 – Concerning the Creation of Crimes Involving Deception about Material Information in Connection with Birth Certificates, by Rep. Lois Saine and Sen. Linda Newell. The bill creates a class 2 misdemeanor for anyone who intentionally omits material information in the preparation of a birth certificate.
  • HB 15-1309 – Concerning the Placement of Interim Therapeutic Restorations by Dental Hygienists, and, in Connection Therewith, Ensuring Medicaid and Children’s Basic Health Plan Reimbursement for Services Provided Through the Use of Telehealth Related to Interim Therapeutic Restoration Procedures and Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Joann Ginal and Sen. Larry Crowder. The bill allows dental hygienists to perform therapeutic restorations.
  • HB 15-1333 – Concerning the Creation of a Regional Center Depreciation Account in the Capital Construction Fund for Maintenance of the State’s Regional Centers, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Ed Vigil and Sen. Randy Baumgardner. The bill creates the Regional Center Depreciation Account to hold moneys for depreciation and capital construction.
  • HB 15-1337 – Concerning Placement Stability for Children, by Rep. Angela Williams and Sen. Linda Newell. The bill requires a court to consider all statutory factors when placing a child for foster care.
  • HB 15-1340 – Concerning an Extension of the Period During Which the Voluntary Contribution Designation Benefiting the Colorado Multiple Sclerosis Fund will Appear on the State Individual Income Tax Return Form, by Reps. Faith Winter & Perry Buck and Sens. Beth Martinez Humenik & Linda Newell. The bill extends the Colorado Multiple Sclerosis Fund check-off through 2021.
  • HB 15-1345 – Concerning an Exemption from Certain Traffic Requirements for the Riders of a Three-Wheel Low-Speed Motorcycle, by Rep. Paul Rosenthal and Sen. Tim Neville. The bill exempts motorcyclists who ride low-speed three-wheeled motorcycles from requirements of licensure and eye protection.
  • HB 15-1366 – Concerning the Expansion of the Colorado Job Growth Incentive Tax Credit to Allow Credits for Businesses that Enter Into a Qualified Partnership with a State Institution of Higher Education, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Dan Pabon & Yeulin Willett and Sen. David Balmer. The bill allows the job growth incentive tax credit to be refundable under certain conditions.
  • HB 15-1387 – Concerning the Elimination of the Authorized Transfer of Medical Marijuana to Retail Marijuana at the Time that a Retail Marijuana Establishment License Becomes Effective, by Reps. Dan Pabon & Bob Rankin and Sens. Pat Steadman & Kent Lambert. The bill prohibits a medical marijuana facility with a retail marijuana license from transferring any of its medical marijuana to the retail establishment.
  • SB 15-192 – Concerning the Provision of a Therapeutic Alternative Drug Selection to Patients Residing in Certain Long-Term Care Facilities, by Sen. Irene Aguilar and Rep. Janak Joshi. The bill allows licensed pharmacists to provide therapeutic alternate drug selections to patients in nursing care facilities and long-term acute care hospitals if certain conditions are met.
  • SB 15-209 – Concerning an Amendment to Specified Statutes Governing the Management of the Financial Affairs of a Unit Owners’ Association Under the “Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act” so as to Exempt Communities in Which a Majority of Units Designated for Residential Use are Time Share Units, by Sen. David Balmer and Rep. Angela Williams. The bill exempts certain timeshare communities from the definitions of “common interest community” and “homeowners’ association.”
  • SB 15-210Concerning Creation of the Title Insurance Commission, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Laura Woods and Rep. Jeni James Arndt. The bill creates the Title Insurance Commission to serve as an advisory body to the Commissioner of Insurance.
  • SB 15-229 – Concerning the Creation of an Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis License Plate for Motor Vehicles, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Laura Woods and Reps. Janak Joshi & Diane Mitsch Bush. The bill creates an ALS license plate, available when the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the ALS Association receives 3,000 signatures of individuals committed to purchase the plate.
  • SB 15-262 – Concerning Updates to the Statutes Regulating Blanket Sickness and Accident Insurance, by Sen. Tim Neville and Rep. Angela Williams. The bill expands and clarifies the groups that may receive blanket accident and sickness insurance.
  • SB 15-267 – Concerning the Financing of Public Schools, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Owen Hill and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill increases per-pupil funding for public schools to reflect inflation.
  • SB 15-270 – Concerning the Creation of the Office of the State Architect, and, in Connection Therewith, Adding Statewide Planning Responsibilities and Making and Reducing an Appropriation, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Bob Rankin. The bill creates the Office of the State Architect in law.
  • SB 15-271 – Concerning the Continuation of the Entities Charged with Representing the Interests of Certain Utility Consumers in Matters Heard by the Public Utilities Commission, by Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg and Rep. Jon Becker. The bill continues the Office of the Consumer Counsel and implements recommendations from the sunset review.
  • SB 15-278 – Concerning an Amendment to the Annual General Appropriation Act for the 2013-2014 Fiscal Year to Allow Unspent Moneys Appropriated for the Colorado State Capitol Dome Restoration Project to be Used for the Next Planned Phase of the Colorado State Capitol Restoration, by Sens. Kent Lambert & Pat Steadman and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill allows the Department of Personnel and Administration to use moneys from the capitol restoration project on other projects.
  • SB 15-281 – Concerning Parent Engagement in Institute Charter Schools, by Sen. Owen Hill and Rep. Tracy Kraft-Tharp. The bill requires charter schools, rather than the Charter School Institute, to hold meetings regarding school priority implementation.
  • SB 15-283 – Concerning Debt Collection Proceedings, and, in Connection Therewith, Increasing the Scope and Value of Assets that may be Exempted, Clarifying Definitions of “Earnings”, and Specifying the Procedure for Service of Notice of Exemption and Pending Levy in Certain Garnishment Proceedings, by Sen. Laura Woods and Rep. Pete Lee. The bill modifies exemptions and procedures in certain debt collection actions.
  • SB 15-202 – Concerning the Regulation of Water Conditioning Appliances Pursuant to the Plumbing Code, by Sen. David Balmer and Rep. Dan Pabon. The bill creates three new categories of registered water conditioners.
  • HB 15-1301 – Concerning the Creation of a Credit for Tobacco Products that a Distributor Ships or Transports to an Out-of-State Consumer, and, in Connection Therewith, Creating the “Cigar On-Line Sales Equalization Act” and Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Angela Williams and Sens. Kevin Grantham & Owen Hill. The bill creates a credit against tobacco excise tax equal to Colorado excise taxes paid on tobacco products other than cigarettes sold by a distributor to an out-of-state consumer.

In addition to the bills signed Friday, the governor allowed three bills to become law without a signature. These bills are also summarized here.

  • HB 15-1316 – Concerning a Simplification of the Process by which the Public Utilities Commission may Issue a Certificate to Provide Taxicab Service in Certain Metropolitan Counties, by Reps. Steve Lebsock & Dan Thurlow and Sens. Owen Hill & Jessie Ulibarri. The bill changes the prerequisites for an applicant seeking authorization to provide taxicab service within certain counties.
  • SB 15-067 – Concerning an Increase in the Class of Offense for Certain Acts of Assault Against Persons Engaged in Performing their Duties as Emergency Responders, by Sen. John Cooke and Rep. Janak Joshi. The bill raises the classification for assault of a first responder to assault in the second degree.
  • SB 15-290 – Concerning Creation of the Colorado Student Leaders Institute, And, In Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Nancy Todd and Rep. Jim Wilson. The bill creates the Colorado Student Leaders Institute, a competitive summer residential education program for high school students.

For a complete list of Governor Hickenlooper’s 2015 legislative decisions, click here.

Let’s Talk About Beer (Law)

BeerColorado loves its beer. Denver is the nation’s former microbrew capital and microbreweries throughout the state continue to thrive. Naturally, because beer business is big business, beer law became a practice area.

Manufacturing and selling alcohol is highly regulated, and microbreweries must comply with myriad state and federal alcohol regulations in addition to standard business regulations. Beyond the regulatory side of beer law, though, are intellectual property concerns. Recently, New Belgium Brewery has been involved in a publicized case about trademark rights to its Slow Ride Session IPA.

New Belgium filed for trademark protection for its Slow Ride IPA, which was granted without opposition by the USPTO. Later, it learned that Oasis Texas Brewing Co. was producing a beer named Slow Ride Pale Ale. According to New Belgium, the Fort Collins brewery offered to resolve the issue amicably in order to allow both breweries to continue to use the Slow Ride name in certain locations, but Oasis refused, instead issuing a cease and desist letter to New Belgium in which it demanded that all products bearing the Slow Ride name be destroyed and profits from Slow Ride given to Oasis. (Oasis claims New Belgium tried to “strong arm” it into accepting a joint use agreement and says that all negotiations with New Belgium have devolved into hostility.) New Belgium eventually filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Colorado, seeking exclusive use of the Slow Ride name pursuant to its trademark. Earlier this month, a federal judge dismissed the lawsuit for lack of personal jurisdiction over the Texas-based defendants.

The Slow Ride dispute is far from the first trademark dispute to arise from craft beer. Ohio-based Great Lakes Brewing agreed to change the name of its Alchemy IPA as a result of a trademark conflict with the Craft Beer Alliance. Innovation Brewery, a small craft brewery in North Carolina, was accused by Michigan-based Bell’s Brewery of infringing on its trademarked slogan, “bottling innovation since 1985.” Boulder-based Kettle and Stone Brewing Co. agreed to change its name after contact from California’s Stone Brewing Co. Lagunitas Brewery in California dropped its lawsuit against Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. after public outrage at its comparison of the two beer companies’ IPA logos. The list goes on and on.

Later this month, CLE will host its annual Rocky Mountain Intellectual Property Institute. The plenary session, “Innovation & Disruption: How Crafty Micro-brews are Shaking Up the Beer Industry,” features attorney Michael Drumm of Drumm Law Group, LLC and Chris Hill of Odyssey Beerworks Brewery & Taproom in Arvada. The Rocky Mountain IP Institute will also feature a beer tasting this year. To register, click the link below.

CLE Program: The 13th Annual Rocky Mountain Intellectual Property Institute

This CLE presentation will take place from Thursday, May 28 through Friday, May 29, 2015. Click here to register.

Can’t make the live program? Order the homestudy here – CDMP3

 

Budget Bill and Appropriations Bills Signed by Governor Hickenlooper

On Friday, April 24, 2015, Governor Hickenlooper signed eight bills into law, including the 2015-2016 fiscal year Long Appropriations Bill. To date, the governor has signed 146 bills into law this legislative session. The bills signed Friday are summarized here.

  • SB 15-234FY 2015-16 Long Appropriations Bill, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill sets the state budget for the 2015-16 fiscal year. A summary of some of the budget items is available here.
  • HB 15-1266 – Concerning the Information Technology Budget Request Process, by Rep. Bob Rankin and Sen. Kent Lambert. The bill modifies the procedure for IT budget requests from state agencies and institutes of higher education.
  • HB 15-1149 – Concerning the Respondent Parents’ Counsel, and, in Connection Therewith, Making and Reducing Appropriations, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert. The bill pushes the start date for the judicial department’s development of an Office of Respondent Parents’ Counsel to July 1, 2016, and creates a nine-member governing commission for that office.
  • HB 15-1269 – Concerning the Transfer of Persons Who Cannot Be Safely Confined in their Current Facility Between a Department of Corrections Facility and a Facility Operated by the Department of Human Services, by Reps. Beth McCann & Joann Ginal and Sen. Kevin Grantham. The bill clarifies procedures for the transfer of inmates from a DOC facility to a DHS facility, and specifies that DHS may not transfer non-offenders to the DOC.
  • HB 15-1295 – Concerning Inspections Conducted by Institutes of Higher Education, by Reps. Jovan Melton & Kevin Priola and Sen. Chris Holbert. The bill enlarges the scope of work that may be overseen by building departments at institutes of higher education.
  • HB 15-1042 – Concerning Requiring Presentence Reports to Include a Statement Concerning a Defendant’s Eligibility for Release from Incarceration, by Rep. Mike Foote and Sen. John Cooke. The bill requires that presentence reports prepared for inmates sentenced for felonies occurring after July 1, 2004, include a statement about how long the defendant is expected to be incarcerated.
  • HB 15-1072 – Concerning Harassment Through an Interactive Electronic Medium, by Rep. Rhonda Fields and Sen. Linda Newell. The bill modifies the existing harassment statute to include harassment through electronic media.
  • HB 15-1204 – Concerning the Creation of a Distillery Pub License, by Rep. Dan Pabon and Sen. Andy Kerr. The bill creates a new liquor license for spiritous distilleries so that they may operate a pub that serves alcoholic beverages on the premises.

For a complete list of Governor Hickenlooper’s 2015 legislative decisions, click here.

Colorado Supreme Court: Hotel Has Duty of Reasonable Care to Intoxicated Guests During Lawful Eviction

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Westin Operator, LLC v. Groh on Monday, April 13, 2015.

Summary Judgment—Negligence—Innkeeper–Guest Special Relationship—First Impression Duty of Care During Eviction—Colorado Dram Shop Act.

Through her parents, Jillian Groh sought to hold the Westin Hotel responsible for serious injuries she sustained in a drunk-driving accident following a lawful eviction from the Westin. The Westin filed a motion for summary judgment, which the trial court granted. The court of appeals initially affirmed the summary judgment order. The court of appeals then granted Groh’s petition for rehearing. A different panel withdrew the first court of appeals opinion, held that a hotel has a duty to evict a guest “in a reasonable manner,” and reversed the summary judgment order with respect to Groh’s claims of negligence and negligent hiring and training.

For the first time, the Supreme Court examined the duty of care a hotel owes a guest during a lawful eviction. Based on the special relationship that exists between an innkeeper and guest, the Court held that a hotel that evicts a guest has a duty to exercise reasonable care under the circumstances. This requires the hotel to refrain from evicting an intoxicated guest into a foreseeably dangerous environment. Whether a foreseeably dangerous environment existed at the time of eviction depends on the guest’s physical state and the conditions into which he or she was evicted, including the time, the surroundings, and the weather. In this case, genuine issues of material fact preclude summary judgment on Groh’s negligence-related claims.

The Court also considered whether the Dram Shop Act of the Colorado Liquor Code, CRS § 12-47-801, applies to this case. The Court concluded that the Act does not apply because it is undisputed that the Westin did not serve alcohol to Groh. Consequently, the Court affirmed the judgment of the court of appeals and remanded the case for further proceedings.

Summary and full case available here, courtesy of The Colorado Lawyer.

Colorado Court of Appeals: Online Travel Companies Do Not Actually Furnish Lodging and Therefore Are Not Liable for Lodger’s Tax

The Colorado Court of Appeals issued its opinion in Expedia, Inc. v. City & County of Denver on Thursday, July 3, 2014.

Online Travel Companies’ Collection of Municipal Taxes for Hotel Accommodations.

The City and County of Denver (City) imposes a Lodger’s Tax of 10.75% on the purchase price for lodging. “Lodging” includes overnight accommodations, furnished for consideration, in a hotel or similar establishment. The tax must be collected from travelers and remitted to the City by “vendors.” The City argued that plaintiff online travel companies (OTCs) are vendors that must collect and remit the Lodger’s Tax on the fees they charge their customers, in addition to the tax on the room rate charged by the hotel.

The OTCs facilitate booking reservations on behalf of its customers. The OTC calculates the Lodger’s Tax based solely on the discounted room rate charged by the hotel, excluding the additional fees collected from the traveler and retained by the OTC. The OTC does not disclose to the customer the discounted rate the OTC pays the hotel, the amount representing the OTC’s fees, or the portion of the final price attributable to the Lodger’s Tax.

The hotel invoices the OTC for the contractual room rate and the Lodger’s Tax on that discounted rate. The hotel assumes responsibility for remitting the collected Lodger’s Tax to the City. The Lodger’s Tax remitted is based on the discounted rate charged the OTC, but the City argued it should be based on the full amount paid by the customer to the OTC.

The City began investigating the OTC’s obligations under the Lodger’s Tax in 2003. The City took no action until 2010, when it issued the assessments at issue in this case. The City’s manager of finance issued Lodger’s Tax assessments to the OTCs from 2001 through April 2010 totaling $40 million.

The parties stipulated that if they were liable for the Lodger’s Tax on their fees since 2001, they owed $4,652.522 in back taxes, not including penalties and interest. A hearing officer found that the OTCs were liable for the tax since 2001, and they owed interest and a 15% nonpayment penalty.

The district court affirmed, but found error in the hearing officer not having applied the ordinance’s three-year limitations period relevant to tax assessments. It therefore vacated the assessments to the extent they pertained to taxes payable more than three years before the date of the assessments. The OTCs appealed the portion of the order holding them liable, and the City cross-appealed the application of the statute of limitations.

The Court of Appeals held that the Lodger’s Tax did not apply to the fees charged by the OTCs for two reasons: (1) the OTCs are not vendors within the meaning of the ordinance because they do not furnish lodging, and (2) their fees are not included within the purchase price for lodging under the ordinance because the fees are not directly connected with the furnishing of lodging. The City argued that making sales of lodging is synonymous with selling lodging. The Court agreed that the OTCs are not vendors under the ordinance because they do not actually furnish lodging. It was an abuse of discretion to find otherwise.

The Court found that OTC fees are not directly connected with furnishing lodging because they are compensated only for providing travel-related information and online facilitation services. Therefore, under a provision of the Lodger’s Tax, their fees are excluded. The matter was remanded to vacate all of the tax assessments against the OTCs.

Summary and full case available here.

Bills Regarding Recall Elections, Foreclosure Cure Funds, Protecting Rape Victims, and More Signed

The 2014 Legislative Session ended last Wednesday, but Governor Hickenlooper continues to sign legislation that passed through both houses this term. To date, the governor has signed 190 bills and vetoed two. He is expected to sign several more bills in the coming days and weeks. Summaries of bills signed on Friday, May 9, 2014 and Monday, May 12, 2014 are provided here.

Friday, May 9, 2014

  • HB 14-1327 – Concerning Measures to Expand the Deployment of Communication Networks and, in Connection Therewith, Enacting the “Broadband Deployment Act” and Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Angela Williams & Carole Murray and Sens. Mark Scheffel & Lois Tochtrop. The bill, highly praised by the governor, sets statewide policy regarding deployment of broadband technology.
  • SB 14-158 – Concerning the Harmonization of Statutory Recall Election Provisions with the Recall Provisions in the State Constitution to Reflect the Manner in which Contemporary Elections are Conducted, and, in Connection Therewith, Aligning Circular Regulation and Petition Requirements with Initiative and Referendum Circulator and Petition Requirements, by Sens. Pat Steadman & Matt Jones and Rep. Dickey Lee Hullinghorst. The bill eliminates certain conflicts between the state and federal constitutions regarding recall elections and makes changes to the procedure for recall elections.
  • SB 14-160 – Concerning Removing Limitations on a Transitional Living Program for a Person with a Brain Injury, by Sen. Linda Newell and Rep. Dianne Primavera. Currently, Medicaid waiver recipients with traumatic brain injury can receive transitional living services for 6 to 12 months. The bill removes the time limit for the services.
  • SB 14-161 – Concerning the Modernization of Provisions of the “Uniform Election Code of 1992” that Ensure Voter Access for Eligible Electors and, in Connection Therewith, Reducing the Deadline by which a Voter Registration Application Must be Submitted via Certain Methods, Altering Procedures Pertaining to National Change-of-Address Searches, Allowing Emergency Ballots to be Obtained for Nonmedical Reasons, Amending Provisions Relating to Military and Overseas Voters, Increasing the Penalty for Providing False Residential Information, Making the Aiding or Abetting the Provision of False Residential Information a New Felony Offense, and Making and Reducing Appropriations, by Sens. Jessie Ulibarri & Mike Johnston and Rep. Dickey Lee Hullinghorst. The bill makes several changes to the state’s Uniform Election Code of 1992.
  • SB 14-165 – Concerning the Percentage at Which to Rate the Student Academic Growth Standard for the Purpose of Licensed Personnel Performance Evaluations in the 2014-15 Academic Year, by Sens. Mike Johnston & Andy Kerr and Reps. Carole Murray & Cherylin Peniston. The bill allows a local school board to determine what percentage, if any, of a teacher’s performance evaluation must be based on student academic growth.
  • HB 14-1034 – Concerning the Creation of a Wine Packaging Permit to Allow Certain Alcohol Beverage Licensees to Package Wine Produced by Another Manufacturer, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Rep. Angela Williams and Sen. Cheri Jahn. The bill allows licensed wineries to package wine produced by other wineries.
  • HB 14-1061 – Concerning Sentences Imposing Monetary Payments in Criminal Actions and, in Connection Therewith, Eliminating Prison Sentences for Persons who are Unable to Pay Criminal Monetary Penalties, by Rep. Joseph Salazar and Sen. Lucia Guzman. The bill changes procedures for criminal defendants who fail to pay monetary fines.
  • HB 14-1095 – Concerning the Colorado Bureau of Investigation’s Authority to Investigate Computer Crime, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Daniel Kagan & Bob Gardner and Sen. Linda Newell. The bill authorizes the CBI to investigate cyber crime.
  • HB 14-1101 – Concerning a Partial Business Personal Property Tax Exemption for Community Solar Gardens, by Rep. Max Tyler and Sen. Gail Schwartz. Beginning in 2015, the bill exempts electricity generated by a community solar garden from property tax.
  • HB 14-1130 – Concerning the Disposition of Moneys Charged to Borrowers for Costs to be Paid in Connection with Foreclosure, by Rep. Beth McCann and Sen. Jessie Ulibarri. The bill establishes procedures for handling cure statements in foreclosure and directs that overpayments of funds paid to cure a debt in foreclosure must be returned to the borrower.
  • HB 14-1162 – Concerning Protection of the Victim of a Sexual Assault in Cases where a Child was Conceived as a Result of the Sexual Assault, and, in Connection Therewith, Making Legislative Changes in Response to the Study by and the Report of the Recommendations from the Task Force on Children Conceived Through Rape, by Rep. Lois Landgraf and Sen. Morgan Carroll. The bill adds several protections for victims of sexual assault who conceive children as a result of the assault, including allowing termination of the aggressor’s parent-child relationship even when no conviction occurred and requires victims and children to be referred to by their initials in termination proceedings.
  • HB 14-1181 – Concerning the Sunset Review of the Nurse-Physician Advisory Task Force for Colorado Health Care and, in Connection Therewith, Continuing the Task Force Through September 1, 2020, by Rep. Sue Schafer and Sen. John Kefalas. The bill repeals the sunset of the Nurse Physician Advisory Task Force, which evaluates the medication prescribing authority of nurse practitioners.
  • HB 14-1266 – Concerning the Penalties for Certain Value-Based Offenses, and, In Connection Therewith, Reducing an Appropriation, by Reps. Beth McCann & Bob Gardner and Sens. Linda Newell & Steve King. The bill makes adjustments to the penalties of certain value-based crimes, such as criminal mischief, fraud by check, and others.
  • HB 14-1284 – Concerning Registration with the Department of Revenue of Distinguished License Plates Issued to Members of the Colorado General Assembly, by Reps. Max Tyler & Don Coram and Sens. Nancy Todd & Larry Crowder. The bill proscribes procedures for the Department of Revenue to use when issuing legislative license plates.
  • HB 14-1290 – Concerning an Addition to the Definition of “Other Outlet” to Enable the Operation of a Remotely Located Telepharmacy Outlet, by Rep. KC Becker and Sen. Ellen Roberts. The bill allows telepharmacy practices for patients who communicate remotely with pharmacy outlets and specifies rules related to telepharmacy practices.
  • HB 14-1291 – Concerning Authorizing a Charter School to Employ a School Security Officer by Contract to Carry a Concealed Handgun if the Person has a Valid Conceal Carry Permit, by Reps. Mike McLachlan & Stephen Humphrey and Sens. Scott Renfroe & Lois Tochtrop. The bill allows charter schools to employ armed security officers.
  • HB 14-1295 – Concerning Residential Mortgage Foreclosures, and, in Connection Therewith, Requiring a Single Point of Contact and Prohibiting Dual Tracking, by Rep. Beth McCann and Sen. Jessie Ulibarri. The bill, which generally applies to servicers of mortgage loans, amends residential foreclosure statutes.
  • HB 14-1307 – Concerning the Recategorization of Mineral County for the Purpose of Statutory Provisions Fixing the Salaries of County Officers, by Rep. Edward Vigil and Sen. Larry Crowder. The bill reclassifies Mineral County for the purpose of establishing salaries for certain officials.
  • HB 14-1312 – Concerning Efforts to Reduce the Number of Foreclosures in Colorado, and, In Connection Therewith, Continuing the Foreclosure Deferment Program, by Rep. Angela Williams and Sen. Jessie Ulibarri. The bill extends the Foreclosure Deferment Program until September 1, 2015.
  • HB 14-1319 – Concerning the Creation of an Outcomes-Based Funding Model for Higher Education, and, in Connection Therewith, Making and Reducing Appropriations, by Reps. Mark Ferrandino & Chris Holbert and Sens. Kent Lambert & Nancy Todd. The bill creates a new mechanism for allocating state funds to institutions of higher education.
  • HB 14-1329 – Concerning the Exemption of Certain Internet-Protocol-Enabled Services from Oversight by the Public Utilities Commission, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Angela Williams & Carole Murray and Sens. Andy Kerr & Mark Scheffel. The bill deregulates certain telecommunications products, including voice-over-internet-protocol, most long distance services, certain operator services, and more.
  • HB 14-1330 – Concerning an Update of Telecommunications Terminology for Intrastate Telecommuncations Services, by Rep. Angela Williams and Sen. Lois Tochtrop. The bill amends statutory terms used in telecommunications regulation.
  • HB 14-1331 – Concerning the Regulation of Basic Local Exchange Service as it Affects Effective Competition, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Reps. Angela Williams & Carole Murray and Sens. Jeanne Nicholson & Andy Kerr. The bill modifies the statutory framework for regulation of local phone service.
  • HB 14-1345 – Concerning Authority for the Department of Higher Education to Transfer Moneys Allocated to the Governing Board of an Institution of Higher Education Between the Governing Board’s Spending Authority for College Opportunity Stipends as a Result of Increases or Decreases in Student Enrollment at the Institution of Higher Education, by the Joint Budget Committee. The bill allows the Department of Higher Education to make certain limited monetary transfers.
  • HB 14-1354 – Concerning the Ability of a County Clerk and Recorder to Seek Judicial Review of Final Action by the Secretary of State Relating to Elections, by Reps. John Buckner & Bob Gardner and Sens. Irene Aguilar & Larry Crowder. The bill allows a county clerk and recorder to seek judicial review in district court of certain Secretary of State actions related to elections.

May 12, 2014

  • HB 14-1008 – Concerning the Authorization of the Colorado Water Resources and Power Development Authority to Make Loans to Private Entities for Purposes of Forest Health Projects, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Gail Schwartz. The bill, recommended by the Wildlife Matters Review Committee, allows the Colorado Water Resources and Power Development Authority to make loans to private entities for forest health projects.
  • HB 14-1010 – Concerning Corrections to Statutory Provisions Relating to the Prescribed Burning Program Administered by the Division of Fire Prevention and Control in the Department of Public Safety, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. George Rivera. The bill changes naming of “prescribed burn managers” to “certified burners” and removes certified burners from the list of people who can be in supervisory roles at prescribed burns.
  • SB 14-164 – Concerning Aerial Firefighting Efforts Through the Division of Fire Prevention and Control in the Department of Public Safety, and, in Connection Therewith, Implementing Recommendations Made by the Division Regarding the Colorado Firefighting Air Corps, by Sens. Morgan Carroll & Steve King and Reps. Bob Gardner & Mike McLachlan. The bill directs the Division of Fire Prevention and Control to maximize its aerial firefighting capacity.

For a list of Governor Hickenlooper’s legislative decisions, click here.

HB 12-1128: Prohibiting Discrimination in Public Places Due to Unconventional Attire

On January 20, 2012, Rep. Joe Miklosi introduced HB 12-1128 – Concerning a Prohibition on Discrimination in Places of Public Accommodation that is Based on Unconventional Attire. This summary is published here courtesy of the Colorado Bar Association’s e-Legislative Report.

The bill adds “unconventional attire” as grounds on which discrimination in places of public accommodation may not be based. “Unconventional attire” means dress that indicates a person’s participation in motorcycling or status as a veteran. Assigned to the State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee.

Summaries of other featured bills can be found here.