March 2017

Colorado Government Affairs Update – March

Colorado Government Affairs Update – March

Over a third of the legislative session is now complete, and there is still no agreement on many of the major issues noted as priorities for this year.  However, recent indications lead to optimism that the two parties still may be able to come together on an omnibus agreement that could address several of the budgetary issues facing the state.  A possible deal could include issues that both sides have raised over the last several years, including creating a dedicated source of revenue for transportation, revisiting the hospital provider fee, scaling back taxes like the business personal property tax, and easing business regulations. 

The state’s next quarterly revenue forecast will be released on March 17 and will drive final figure-setting decisions by the Joint Budget Committee for the FY17-18 budget, which will be released shortly thereafter.  Indications are that the existing $600 million deficit in the Governor’s budget request will grow to a larger deficit.  This makes funding decisions more complicated but could also compel agreements on bi-partisan solutions because the alternative cuts are untenable to both sides.

Below is a summary of some relevant pieces of introduced and expected legislation.

Policy Area Summary
Telecom

HB-1193 Small Cell Facilities Permitting – Deals with permitting and installation of next generation wireless infrastructure.

Construction Defects

HB-1169 Construction Defect Litigation Builder's Right to Repair

SB-45 Construction Defect Claim Allocation of Defense Costs

SB-155 Statutory Definition of Construction Defect

SB-156 Homeowners' Association Construction Defect Lawsuit Approval Timelines

SB-157 Construction Defect Actions Notice Vote Approval

All five of the bills essentially cover all points of the construction defect debate, but a clear path for a meaningful agreement on the issue has yet to emerge.

Energy & Environment

SB-105 Consumer Right to Know Electric Utility Charges

SB-188 Repeal Income Tax Credit for Innovative Motor Vehicles (CNG, EV)

Employers

SB-001 Alleviate Fiscal Impact of State Regulations

HB-1119 Payment of Workers Compensation Benefits

HB-1001 Parental leave for Academic Activities

Expected Legislation: Similar legislation from past sessions, including wage theft, ban the box, and family medical leave act insurance plan.

Healthcare

Expected Legislation: The Lt. Governor is working on a package of bills that will deal with almost every aspect of healthcare policy.  Bills are expected on transparency for healthcare products, health plan participation in individual market, transparency/consumer rating system, and free standing ER facility fee codes.

Automobile – 
Technology

Expected LegislationCar manufacturers are planning on introducing autonomous vehicle regulations for the state to help spur the new market.

Holland & Hart provides clients with a full range of legislative and regulatory services in Colorado which includes establishing a legislative strategy, lobbying specific legislation and multi-state legislative and regulatory monitoring.

Questions? Please contact John Karakoulakis (303.295.8003 / jokarakoulakis@hollandhart.com).
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