April 20, 2019

Governor Hickenlooper Signs Appropriations Bills and Marijuana Bonding Repeal Bill

On Friday, March 11, 2016, Governor Hickenlooper signed 15 bills into law. To date, he has signed 17 bills in the 2016 legislative session. Many of the bills signed Friday were supplemental appropriations bills, and the governor also signed one bill removing impracticable regulations from the marijuana industry. Links to the bills are available here.

  • HB 16-1041 – Concerning the Removal of Unreasonably Impracticable Financial Requirements Applicable to Marijuana Businesses that are Required to be Licensed, by Rep. Steve Lebsock and Sen. Chris Holbert. The bill removes the surety bonding requirement for licensure of medical marijuana and retail marijuana businesses.

The following bills supplement the fiscal year appropriations to the respective departments.

  • HB 16-1237 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Agriculture, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1238 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Corrections, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1239 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Offices of the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and State Planning and Budgeting, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1240 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1242 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Human Services, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1243 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Judicial Department, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1244 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Law, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1245 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Military Affairs, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1246 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Personnel, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1248 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Public Safety, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1249 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Regulatory Agencies, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1250 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of Revenue, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1251 – Concerning a Supplemental Appropriation to the Department of the Treasury, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.
  • HB 16-1252 – Concerning Funding for Capital Construction, and Making Supplemental Appropriations in Connection Therewith, by Rep. Millie Hamner and Sen. Kent Lambert.

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

Colorado Supreme Court: “Negative Factor” Regarding School Funding Does Not Conflict with Amendment 23

The Colorado Supreme Court issued its opinion in Dwyer v. State on Monday, September 21, 2015.

Constitutional Interpretation—Amendment 23—Public School Finance Act of 1994—Negative Factor.

In this original proceeding, the Supreme Court considered the legality of the “negative factor,” a legislative enactment that operates to reduce education funding across all Colorado school districts. Plaintiffs argued that the negative factor is unconstitutional because it violates Amendment 23, a constitutional provision requiring annual increases to “statewide base per pupil funding.” The Court concluded that plaintiffs’ complaint misconstrued the relationship between the negative factor and Amendment 23. By its plain language, Amendment 23 only requires increases to 20 statewide base per pupil funding, not to total per pupil funding. The Court therefore held that the negative factor does not violate Amendment 23. Accordingly, the Court made its rule to show cause absolute, and it remanded the case to the trial court with instructions to dismiss plaintiffs’ complaint.

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

Bills Regarding Oversight of CFIs, Electronic Benefits Card Transfer, and Promoting Water Conservation in Land Planning Signed

legislationOn Friday, May 1, 2015, Governor Hickenlooper signed 30 bills into law. To date, the governor has signed 176 bills into law. The bills signed on May 1 are summarized here.

  • HB 15-1153 – Concerning Oversight of Child and Family Investigators, and, in Connection Therewith, Making and Reducing Appropriations, by Rep. Dave Young and Sen. Pat Steadman. The bill consolidates the oversight of all CFIs into the Office of the State Court Administrator.
  • HB 15-1255 – Concerning the Enforcement of the Prohibited Use of Electronic Benefits Transfer Cards at Certain Locations, by Reps. Timothy Dore & Dan Pabon and Sens. Kevin Grantham & Cheri Jahn. The bill requires periodic reporting of the use of electronic benefits cards at prohibited locations and adds marijuana retailers to the list of prohibited locations.
  • HB 15-1294 – Concerning Alignment of State Law Regarding In-State Tuition Classification with the Federal “Veterans Access, Choice, and Accountability Act of 2014”, by Reps. Pete Lee & Jon Keyser and Sens. Nancy Todd & Owen Hill. The bill requires qualified Colorado institutes of higher education to classify eligible veterans as in-state for tuition purposes.
  • SB 15-008 – Concerning the Promotion of Water Conservation in the Land Use Planning Process, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Ellen Roberts and Rep. Ed Vigil. The bill requires the Colorado Water Conservation Board to develop conservation programs for local government land use planners.
  • SB 15-046 – Concerning Reducing the Cost of Attainment of Renewable Energy Standards by Electric Utilities that are not Investor-Owned, and, in Connection Therewith, Allowing Purchases of Electricity from Community Solar Gardens by Cooperative Electric Associations to Qualify as Retail Distributed Generation, by Sen. Kevin Grantham and Rep. Dominick Moreno. The bill reduces the retail distributed generation requirement for cooperative electric associations.
  • SB 15-060 – Concerning the Prevention of Multiple Voter Registrations by the Same Elector, by Sen. Chris Holbert and Rep. Justin Everett. The bill allows the Secretary of State to forward any information from the DMV to the appropriate county clerk for the purpose of updating voter registration information.
  • SB 15-065 – Concerning a Prohibition on the Use of Public Electronic Benefits Transfer Services at Certain Establishments, by Sen. Vicki Marble and Rep. Dan Nordberg. The bill prohibits recipients of electronic benefits transfer cards from using them at adult entertainment facilities or marijuana establishments.
  • SB 15-085 – Concerning the Expansion of the “Colorado Cottage Foods Act,” and, in Connection Therewith, Increasing the Net Revenue a Producer Can Earn Under the Act, by Sen. Beth Martinez Humenik and Reps. Faith Winter & Perry Buck. The bill allows “cottage food” producers to expand their allowable net revenues.
  • SB 15-106 – Concerning the Continuation of the Regulatory Authority Granted Under the “Barber and Cosmetologist Act,” and, in Connection Therewith, Continuing the Cosmetology Advisory Committee and Implementing the Other Recommendations of the Department of Regulatory Agencies as Contained in the 2014 Sunset Report and Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Laura Woods and Rep. Jeni James Arndt. The bill continues the “Barber and Cosmetologist Act” and enacts recommendations from the sunset review committee.
  • SB 15-122 – Concerning the Continuation of the Regulation of Massage Parlors, and, in Connection Therewith, Repealing the Regulation of Massage Parlors, by Sen. Linda Newell and Rep. Dominick Moreno. The bill limits the ability of local governments to regulate massage parlors.
  • SB 15-178 – Concerning the Continuation of the Colorado Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, and, in Connection Therewith, Implementing the Recommendations of the 2014 Sunset Report by the Department of Regulatory Agencies, by Sen. Linda Newell and Rep. Jessie Danielson. The bill continues the Colorado Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing and implements recommendations of the sunset review committee.
  • SB 15-182 – Concerning Allowing the Department of Corrections to Transfer Certain Offenders to the Youthful Offender System to Participate in Age-Appropriate Programs, by Sens. Leroy Garcia & Larry Crowder and Reps. Clarice Navarro & Daneya Esgar. The bill allows the Department of Corrections to transfer offenders aged 24 or younger into or out of the Youthful Offender System.
  • SB 15-193 – Concerning the Consolidation of Two Reports that the Statewide Internet Portal Authority is Required to Submit to the Members of the General Assembly, by Sens. Patrick Neville & Tim Neville and Reps. Jack Tate & Max Tyler. The bill combines the reporting requirements of the Statewide Internet Portal Authority into one written report submitted to various legislative committees.
  • SB 15-194 – Concerning the Board of Directors of the Statewide Internet Portal Authority, by Sens. Patrick Neville & Tim Neville and Reps. Jack Tate & Max Tyler. The bill allows executive directors of executive branch agencies to select a designee to serve on the board in their stead, but designees may not serve as the board chair.
  • SB 15-198 – Concerning Modifications to the Colorado Water Conservation Board’s Fallowing Pilot Program, and, in Connection Therewith, Expanding the Program to Allow an Agricultural Water Right Owner to Lease an Agricultural Water Right for Temporary Agricultural, Environmental, Industrial, or Recreational Use, by Sen. Larry Crowder and Rep. Ed Vigil. The bill allows an agricultural water right owner to lease its right for temporary agricultural, environmental, industrial, or recreational use while the agricultural land goes fallow.
  • SB 15-235 – Concerning Increasing the Amount that the General Assembly may Appropriate for the Child Nutrition School Lunch Protection Program, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Pat Steadman and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill increases the appropriation for the state school lunch program.
  • SB 15-236 – Concerning the Reorganization of Funds Expended by the State Historical Society, Sen. Kevin Grantham and Rep. Bob Rankin. The bill creates two separate subaccounts in the State Historical Fund.
  • SB 15-237 – Concerning Calculations Relating to Appropriations to Institutions of Higher Education, and, in Connection Therewith, Clarifying Calculations Required Pursuant to Sections 23-18-304 and 23-18-305, Colorado Revised Statutes, and Delaying Performance Funding Calculations Pursuant to Section 23-1-108, Colorado Revised Statutes, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill makes technical clarifications to definitions used in higher education funding formulas.
  • SB 15-238 – Concerning Allowable Uses of Moneys in the General Fund Exempt Account that are Designated to Benefit Students Attending Institutions of Higher Education, by Sen. Pat Steadman & Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill adds specific uses to the list of qualified higher education appropriations.
  • SB 15-240 – Concerning a Funding Formula for Independent Living Centers, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Pat Steadman and Rep. Dave Young. The bill requires DHS to promulgate a rule regarding funding for independent living centers and requires base funding of $600,000 to each center.
  • SB 15-241 – Concerning Collaborative Management of Multi-Agency Services Provided to Children and Families, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Pat Steadman and Rep. Dave Young. The bill allows moneys from the general fund to be allocated to the Collaborative Management Fund in the DHS and makes changes to the program for collaborative management.
  • SB 15-242 – Concerning an Allocation in Addition to the Child Welfare Block Grant to Counties for the Purpose of Hiring New Child Welfare Staff, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Kevin Grantham and Rep. Dave Young. The bill creates a new allocation for distributing funds to counties to hire additional child welfare staff.
  • SB 15-243 – Concerning a Prohibition on the Transfer of State-Operated Beds Under the Waiver for Home- and Community-Based Services for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Dave Young. The bill prohibits DHS from selling or closing state-operated centers with beds for individuals with disabilities.
  • SB 15-244 – Concerning the Transfer of Moneys to Offset the Federal Government’s Recoupment of Mineral Lease Payments to the State, by Sen. Kevin Grantham and Rep. Bob Rankin. The bill transfers moneys from the General Fund for three fiscal years to offset recoupment of federal mineral lease moneys.
  • SB 15-245 – Concerning the Provision of State Funding for Natural Hazard Mapping, by Sen. Kevin Grantham and Rep. Dave Young. The bill creates a three-year program for state mapping of natural hazards.
  • SB 15-246 – Concerning Modifications to Accommodate Certain Statewide Financial Information Technology Systems in the Department of Personnel, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Bob Rankin. The bill requires the Department of Personnel and Administration to develop a method to bill users of its financial IT systems for the full cost of usage.
  • SB 15-248Concerning the Repeal of the State Facility Security Fund, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill repeals the state facility security fund, because there have been no grants made or deposits to the fund since its inception.
  • SB 15-249 – Concerning a Transfer from the Marijuana Tax Cash Fund to the General Fund, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill increases the transfer of moneys from the marijuana tax cash fund to the General Fund.
  • SB 15-251 – Concerning the Exclusion of Appropriations for Real Property Lease-Purchase Payments from the Basis for the Calculation of the General Fund Reserve, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill exempts payments for certificates of participation in lease-purchase agreements from the General Fund for purposes of calculating reserves.
  • SB 15-255 – Concerning the Deposit of Twenty Million Dollars of State Severance Tax Revenues in the General Fund, by Sen. Kent Lambert and Rep. Millie Hamner. The bill diverts money from the state severance tax fund to the General Fund.

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

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.

Bills Regarding Volunteer Fire Department, Military Relief Fund, and Supplemental Appropriations Signed

On Wednesday, March 11, 2015, Governor Hickenlooper signed 21 bills. To date, the governor has signed 24 bills this legislative session. Most of the bills signed Wednesday were supplemental appropriations bills. These included supplemental appropriations for the departments of agriculture, corrections, education, law, health care policy and financing, human services, local affairs, natural resources, public health, regulatory agencies, state, and transportation, as well as the offices of the governor and lieutenant governor.

The two non-appropriations bills signed are as follows:

  • HB 15-1017Concerning Nongovernmental Volunteer Fire Departments in Colorado, and, in Connection Therewith, Enacting the “Volunteer Fire Department Organization Act,” by Reps. Millie Hamner & Perry Buck and Sen. Ellen Roberts. The bill establishes the “Volunteer Fire Department Organization Act” to regulate volunteer fire departments. 
  • HB 15-1052Concerning Eligibility to Receive a Grant from the Military Family Relief Fund, by Reps. Terri Carver & Jovan Melton and Sen. Nancy Todd. The bill makes slight amendments to the statutes regarding military family relief grants.

For the complete list of bills signed on March 11, 2015, click here. For all of Governor Hickenlooper’s 2015 legislative decisions, click here.

College Affordability Act, Budget Bill, and Other Bills Signed by Governor

As the legislature winds down the 2014 legislative session, Governor Hickenlooper continues to sign legislation that passes both houses. To date, the governor has signed 165 bills and vetoed two. He signed seven bills into law on April 25, 2014, he signed the Long Bill (budget bill) on April 30, he signed the College Affordability Act on May 1, and he signed nine bills on May 2. These are summarized here.

April 25, 2014

  • HB 14-1092 – Concerning the Voluntary Contribution Designation Benefitting the Colorado Youth Conservation Corps Fund that Appears on the State Individual Income Tax Return Forms, by Rep. Edward Vigil and Sen. John Kefalas. The bill creates a new income tax donation checkoff to benefit the Colorado Youth Conservation Corps.
  • HB 14-1107 – Concerning the Authority of the Department of Revenue to Offer Taxpayers the Option to Receive Electronic Notices, by Rep. Max Tyler and Sen. Linda Newell. The bill allows the Department of Revenue to transmit taxpayer notices electronically.
  • HB 14-1176 – Concerning the State Audit Cycle of the Emissions Program for Motor Vehicles, by Rep. Su Ryden and Sen. Lois Tochtrop. The bill changes the state audit cycle of the emissions program from once every three years to once every five years.
  • HB 14-1277 – Concerning Eligibility Requirements for Recipients of Grants from the Military Family Relief Fund, by Rep. Jovan Melton and Sen. Nancy Todd. The bill opens eligibility for grants from the Military Family Relief Fund to families of Colorado National Guard members and families of military personnel called to duty by executive order of the governor.
  • HB 14-1286 – Concerning Authorization for the State Treasurer to Loan to the State Historical Society for Public Display Items Presented to the Governor as Gifts to the State, by Rep. Jovan Melton and Sen. Pat Steadman. The bill allows the treasurer to loan items that were gifts to the state to the History Colorado and museums for display.
  • HB 14-1289 – Concerning the Reinvestment of Unused Governmental Moneys Held by a Financial Institution that are in Excess of the Amount Insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation in Accounts in Other Financial Institutions, by Rep. Frank McNulty and Sen. Mike Johnston. The bill specifies that monies in excess of the amount protected by the FDIC may be deposited in other accounts rather than used for Certificates of Deposit.
  • HB 14-1299 – Concerning the Repeal of the Six-Year Limitation on Applying a Salvage Brand to a Motor Vehicle Whose Cost of Being Repaired Exceeds the Value of the Vehicle Without the Recent Damage, by Rep. Max Tyler and Sen. Nancy Todd. The bill removes the requirement that a vehicle be under six years old when the damage occurs in order to be considered a salvage vehicle.

April 30, 2014

  • HB 14-1336 – Long Appropriations Bill, by the Joint Budget Committee. This bill presents the budget for fiscal year 2014-2015.

May 1, 2014

  • SB 14-001Concerning Making College Education More Affordable by Imposing Further Restrictions on Tuition Increases, Increasing Financial Aid, and Increasing Operating Support for Each Governing Board of a State-Supported Institution of Higher Education by Eleven Percent and, In Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sens. Cheri Jahn & Andy Kerr and Reps. Leroy Garcia & Mike McLachlan. The bill caps the annual increase in the rate of undergraduate in-state tuition for state supported institutions of higher education and appropriates $100,050,000 to the Department of Higher Education to support various financial aid programs and for the College Opportunity Fund and fee-for-service contracts.

May 2, 2014

  • SB 14-027 – Concerning Criminal History Background Checks for Professionals who Have the Authority to Appear in Court, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by Sen. Lucia Guzman and Rep. Pete Lee. The bill authorizes the Colorado Supreme Court to request CBI criminal background checks as part of the licensing process for attorneys.
  • SB 14-114 – Concerning Expanding Access for All Students to Colorado State University – Global Campus, by Sen. Nancy Todd and Reps. Millie Hamner & Chris Holbert. The bill allows CSU Global Campus to offer complete degree programs online.
  • SB 14-135 – Concerning the Repeal of Certain Provisions Concerning the Purchasing of Firearms in States that are Contiguous to Colorado, by Sen. Greg Brophy and Rep. Jared Wright. The bill generally allows purchases of firearms in states contiguous to Colorado and generally allows gun sales to residents of contiguous states.
  • SB 14-146 – Concerning Information that the Department of Transportation May Consider when Conducting a Traffic Investigation for the Purpose of Determining the Appropriate Speed Limit for a Portion of a State Highway for which a Municipality has Proposed a Speed Limit Alteration, by Sen. Gail Schwartz and Rep. Jim Wilson. The bill allows a local government that is proposing a speed limit adjustment to submit its own traffic data and  engineering reports.
  • HB 14-1193 – Concerning Requirements Governing the Imposition of a Fee for the Research and Retrieval of Public Records Under the “Colorado Open Records Act,” by Rep. Joseph Salazar and Sen. John Kefalas. The bill imposes certain restrictions on fees charged for the retrieval of records under the Colorado Open Records Act.
  • HB 14-1203 – Concerning Funding to Maintain the Infrastructure for the Digital Trunked Radio System, and, in Connection Therewith, Making an Appropriation, by the Joint Budget Committee. The bill makes a budget appropriation to replace legacy radio equipment and hardware at radio tower sites.
  • HB 14-1302 – Concerning the Addition of a Judgment Against a Debtor or Transferee who Acts with Actual Intent as an Available Remedy for a Creditor in a Fraudulent Transfer Action, by Rep. John Buckner and Sen. Mike Johnston. The bill provides an additional remedy for creditors when a debtor fraudulently transfers property with the intent to hinder, delay, or defraud the creditor.
  • HB 14-1335 – Concerning Campaign Contribution Limits that are Applicable to Candidate Committees for Candidates who are not Affiliated with a Major Political Party, by Rep. Dominick Moreno and Sen. Matt Jones. The bill allows write-in, unaffiliated, or minor party candidates to accept contributions up to the aggregate contribute limit for the election cycle.
  • HB 14-1342 – Concerning Transfers of Moneys Related to Capital Construction, by the Joint Budget Committee. The bill makes three transfers to the capital construction fund in fiscal year 2014-15.

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