AARP Colorado is pleased to report its 2017 legislative activities. All bills referenced here were signed by Gov. John Hickenlooper unless otherwise noted. Bills with an asterisk (*) note a priority vote. For more information, click here.
But first, save the following dates and come meet with us and share your views at AARP on Tour. Join AARP Colorado staff and volunteers to discuss AARP legislative priorities. Good conversation and light refreshments guaranteed. All forums are free and open to the public:
Friday, September 15, 2017
Fruita Community Center
324 N Coulson St., Fruita, CO 81521
Wednesday, September 27, 2017
The Heritage Center
821 N Division Ave., Sterling, CO 80751
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
Evans Community Complex
1100 37th St.
Evans, CO 80620
1:30 – 3 p.m.
Workplace retirement savings, affordable housing and utilities topped AARP’s agenda
About half of Colorado’s private-sector workers — 750,000 — have no retirement savings plan at work. Access would’ve saved taxpayer dollars
Bill: *House Bill 17-1290
Sponsors: Representatives Janet Buckner and Brittney Pettersen and Senators Nancy Todd and Kerry Donovan
Status: The bill failed in Senate State Affairs following heavy pressure from the financial services industry.
Description: Would’ve created the Colorado Secure Savings Plan, increasing the number of working Coloradans enrolled in retirement plans, giving all employees the ability to create a retirement savings plan though their employer, regardless of whether their employer offers a plan, or not.
AARP’s position: Strongly support.
What’s next: Continue to support legislation that would create this option for Colorado employees.
AARP supported legislation that would have helped provide affordable housing options in Colorado
Bills: House Bills 17-1309, 17-1310, 17-1312 and Senate Bills 17-85, 98, and *17-245
Sponsors: HB 1309 by Representatives Faith Winter and Dominique Jackson and Senators Lucia Guzman and Don Coram. HB 1310 by Representatives Chris Kennedy, Dominique Jackson and Senator Stephen Fenberg, HB 1312 by Representatives Tony Exum and Adrienne Benavidez and Senators Beth Martinez Humenik and Dominick Moreno. SB 85 by Senator Rachel Zenzinger, SB 98 by Senator John Kefalas and Representative Joann Ginal and *SB 245 by Senator Kevin Priola and Representative Dan Pabon
Status: HB 1309, HB 1310 and HB 312 passed the House, but failed in the Senate State Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee. SB 85 and SB 98 failed in the Senate State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee. SB 245 passed and was signed by Gov. Hickenlooper.
Description: HB 1309 and SB 85 would have modified/increased the documentary fee to finance a statewide affordable housing fund. HB 1310 would’ve required landlords to provide any person who has paid a fee with an itemized receipt. HB 312 would‘ve required a residential landlord to provide each tenant with written copy of the rental agreement signed by the parties and give the tenant a receipt for a payment made with cash or a money order. SB 98, concerning mobile home parks, would have protected property rights and provided incentives to local governments to preserve and develop mobile home park communities. SB 245, essentially, extended the notice to move from 7 days to 21 days. The bill also requires 21 days’ notice for a landlord to increase rent in tenancies of one month or longer but less than one year.
AARP’s position: Supported HB 1309, HB 1310, HB 1312 and SB 85 and SB 98. Strongly supported SB 245
What’s next: We will continue to support options for affordable housing in Colorado.
A big victory for consumers was in a ruling by the Public Utilities Commission, instead of a law in the legislature
A settlement was reached in the XCEL Energy Smart Meters/Smart Grid AGIS case. XCEL planned a $530 million deployment of 1.6 million residential smart meters around the state at ratepayer expense. AARP Colorado was heavily involved in the discussion, informing the Public Utilities Commission that XCEL could provide no financial justification for such a broad, rapid deployment. The settlement delays the schedule and pace of installation. Moving forward, XCEL must also demonstrate requested reimbursement is necessary and provides the estimated impact to customers.
Colorado must have fiscal flexibility to fund services for older adults
Bill: *House Bill 17-1187, Senate Bill 17-57 and Senate Bill 17-267
Sponsors: HB 1187 sponsored by Dan Thurlow and Senator Larry Crowder, SB 57 by Sen. Guzman, and SB 267 by Sen. Guzman and Sen. Jerry Sonnenberg, as well as Representatives Jon Becker and KC Becker
Status: HB 1187 passed the House but failed in the Senate Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee. SB 57 failed in the Senate Finance Committee. SB 267 passed and was signed by Gov. Hickenlooper.
Description: HB 1187 would’ve allowed Colorado to vote on a change of the state’s revenue cap as required by the TABOR amendment in the Colorado constitution. SB 57 Turned the state’s hospital provider fee program into a state-run government enterprise and by doing so, would free about $750 million under the revenue caps mandated by TABOR. SB 267 addressed the hospital provider
fee, but among other concerns, but AARP feels it violates Colorado’s single-subject law and it increased Medicaid prescription drug co-pays for the most vulnerable people.
AARP’s position: Strongly supported HB 1187 and SB 57 and opposed SB 267.
What’s next: AARP will continue to support efforts to provide fiscal flexibility to our state.
Other bills worth noting that AARP supported and were signed into law:
House Bill 17-1087 Office of Public Guardianship by Representative Dave Young and Senator Kevin Lundberg creates the office of public guardianship within the judicial department to provide legal guardianship services to indigent and incapacitated adults who have no responsible family members or friends to serve as a guardian and lack adequate resources to compensate a private guardianship.
House Bill 17-1094 by Representatives Perry Buck and Don Valdez and Senators Larry Crowder and Kerry Donovan, improves consumer access to telehealth services by clarifying the existing statute to require health plans to provide coverage under additional types of communication technology.
House Bill 17-1116 by Reps Millie Hamner and Exum and Sen. Martinez-Humenik continues the low-income household energy assistance fund when severance tax money is available.
House Bill 17-1253 by Representative Jessie Danielson and Sen. Crowder protects vulnerable adults from financial abuse.
AARP opposed an effort to eliminate the state’s health insurance marketplace
Senate Bill 17-3 by Senators Jim Smallwood and Patrick Neville would have eliminated the state’s health insurance marketplace, putting thousands at risk for purchasing health insurance. SB 3 failed in the final days of session when the prime sponsor realized he did not have the votes in the Senate.
AARP asked for yes votes on House Bills 17-1087, 17-1290 and Senate Bill 17-245
Key: Y = Yes, N = No and A = Absent
House Votes HB 17-1187 HB 17-1290 HB17-245
|Lee, Pete E||Y||Y||Y|
|Michaelson Janet, Dafna||Y||Y||Y|
|Mitsch Bush, Diane||Y||Y||Y|
|Neville P., Patrick||N||N||N|
|Van Winkle, Kevin||N||N||N|
AARP asked for a yes vote on Senate Bill 17-245
Key: Y = Yes, N = No and A = Absent
Senate Votes SB17-245
|Martinez Humenik, Beth||Y|
For more information on the bills listed, please visit our bill chart at http://coloradocapitolwatch.com/bill-analysis/4365/2017/0/
These selected votes provide a limited view of each legislator’s voting record. This voting record does not highlight unrecorded matters such as work in committees and constituent services. This record does not reflect the overall qualification of a legislator for office and shouldn’t be the sole determinate in evaluating a legislator.