ColoradoStateCapitolSince the Colorado General Assembly convened on January 7th the Chamber has been active advocating for business interests and weighing in on proposed legislation that can impact job creation and existing businesses.  Shown below is a list of bills the Chamber has taken positions on to date.  Members of the organization will be in Denver March 5th and 6th meeting with lawmakers, members of the Governor’s cabinet and taking part in the Statewide Chamber Day at the Capitol.

HB-1006 (Coram) Invasive Phreatophytes Grant Program. The bill establishes a 5-year grant program for the management of invasive phreatophytes (like tamarisk), which are deep-rooted plants that consume water from the water table or the layer of soil just above the water table. Section 1 of the bill creates the invasive phreatophytes grant program account in the noxious weed management fund. Section 2 creates the grant program. The department of agriculture administers the grant program under its authority to manage noxious weeds.

HB15-1040 (Thurlow) Modifications to licensing requirements under “Colorado Common Interest Ownership Act”: Currently, a person who performs at least one community association management practice relating to management of a common interest community is required to obtain a community association manager license. The proposed bill will limit this requirement by: redefining a “common interest community”, if there are multiple managers, only one needs a license, removes examination requirement for everyone except the designated manager.
Action: Support (Was Indefinitely Postponed)

HB15-1057: (Court and DelGrosso/ Sonnenberg and Hodge) Fiscal Impact Statements on Initiatives: Under current law, the director of research of the legislative council of the general assembly is required to prepare a fiscal impact statement for each initiative in the blue book. This fiscal impact statement includes an abstract. The bill requires the director to prepare an initial fiscal impact statement for each initiative submitted to the title board and to further summarize the abstract. The bill also requires the designated representatives of the initiative proponents to appear at all review and comment meetings. If either designated representative fails to appear at a review and comment meeting, the initiative is considered withdrawn.
Action: Support

HB15-1065 (Szabo/Neville) Regulatory Reform Act of 2015: Importance of businesses with 100 or fewer employees to the Colorado economy and the difficulty these types of businesses have in complying with new administrative rules that are not known or understood by these businesses.
Action: Support

HB15-1157 (Willett, Pabon/ Heath, Merrifield) Establishes Working Groups for Economic Development in Distressed Areas: The bill creates the economic development working group for highly distressed rural and urban regions of the state.
Action: Support

HB15-1177 (Willett, Becker/ Donovan) Rural Economic Development Grant Initiative Program: This bill creates the rural economic development initiative grant program for the purpose of creating resiliency in and growing the economies of highly distressed rural counties.
Action: Support

SB15-069 (Woods/Szabo) Repeal Civil Rights Act of HB13-1136: This bill repeals all components of The Job Protection and Civil Rights Enforcement Act of 2013, which established compensatory and punitive damage remedies, as well as front pay, for a person who proves that an employer engaged in a discriminatory or unfair employment practice under state law. With the exception of the expansion of age-based discrimination claims to individuals who are 70 years of age or older, the bill repeals all components of the act and restores the equitable relief remedies that were available to employment discrimination victims making claims under state law prior to the passage of the act.
Action: Support

SB15-120 (Jones/Winter) Grid Modernization Act: The bill requires all providers of retail electric service in Colorado, including municipal utilities and cooperative electric associations, to develop a grid modernization plan outlining how the provider, over a 10-year period, proposes to make measurable progress toward the grid modernization objectives.
Recommendation: Oppose

SB15-141 (Scheffel/Thurlow) Personal Property Tax Credit Increase: For 5 income tax years beginning in 2015, there is an income tax credit to reimburse a qualifying taxpayer for personal property taxes paid in Colorado for which the taxpayer does not already receive a state or federal income tax benefit. To qualify for the credit, a taxpayer must have $15,000 or less worth of personal property on which property taxes are paid in Colorado during an income tax year commencing in 2015, or have less than an inflation-adjusted amount for each income tax year thereafter (property cap). The bill increases the property cap for 2015 from $15,000 to $25,000, and the property cap for the next 4 income tax years will grow by inflation from this amount.
Recommendation: Support

SB15-044 (Scott/Thurlow) Reduction in Colorado’s Renewable Energy Standard: Under current law, the public utilities commission is required to establish electric resource standards. These standards must set the minimum percentage of electricity that retail electric service providers in Colorado must generate or cause to be generated from recycled energy and renewable energy resources. The bill reduces the minimum percentage of renewable energy required of investor-owned utilities from 20% to 15% for the years 2015 through 2019 and from 30% to 15% for the years 2020 and thereafter. The bill also reduces the minimum amounts for cooperative electric associations from 20% to 15% for the years 2020 and thereafter.
Recommendation: Support

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