2018 Legislation

My bills mainly deal with public finance and government efficiency. Information on other legislation of interest can be found in my newsletters, on the updates page, and on leg.colorado.gov. For any assistance testifying on bills or expressing support/opposition, please do not hesitate to reach out to my office.

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HB18-1001: FAMLI Family Medical Leave Insurance Program

The bill creates the family and medical leave insurance (FAMLI) program in the division of family and medical leave insurance (division) in the department of labor and employment to provide partial wage-replacement benefits to an eligible individual who takes leave from work to care for a new child or a family member with a serious health condition or who is unable to work due to the individual's own serious health condition.

Each employee in the state will pay a premium determined by the director of the division by rule, which premium is based on a percentage of the employee's yearly wages and must not initially exceed .99%. The premiums are deposited into the family and medical leave insurance fund from which family and medical leave benefits are paid to eligible individuals. The director may also impose a solvency surcharge by rule if determined necessary to ensure the soundness of the fund. The division is established as an enterprise, and premiums paid into the fund are not considered state revenues for purposes of the taxpayer's bill of rights (TABOR).

Status: Postponed Indefinitely by Senate State, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee

HB18-1073: Water District Ability Contract Water Assets

The bill authorizes water districts, including water activity enterprises, to enter into contracts for water and the capacity in works and allows the contracts to be based on municipalities' authority to contract for water and sewer facilities. It also specifies that water conservancy districts' contracts can be for municipal and industrial use by the recipient of the water.

Status: Signed Into Law By Governor

HB18-1096: Special Event Permit Alcohol Beverages

The bill adds to the list of organizations authorized to obtain a special event permit to sell alcohol beverages for a limited period an organization that is incorporated under Colorado law for educational purposes.

Additionally, the bill removes the requirement that a special event permit be issued to a municipality only if the municipality owns an art facility and instead allows a special event permit to be issued to any municipality, county, or special district.

Status: Signed Into Law By Governor

HB18-1098: Roll Over Year-end Balance Environmental Response Account

Under current practice, expenditures by the Colorado oil and gas conservation commission to address the mitigation of adverse environmental impacts of oil and gas operations are paid from the environmental response account of the oil and gas conservation and environmental response fund, and the year-end balance of the account transfers into the fund. The bill specifies that the year-end balance of the account remains in the account.

Status: Signed Into Law By Governor

HB18-1174: Sunset Continue Board Of Mortgage Loan Originators

Sunset Process - House Business Affairs and Labor Committee. The bill implements the recommendations of the department of regulatory agencies in its sunset review of the board of mortgage loan originators.

Sections 1 and 2 ( Recommendation 1 ) of the bill continue the board for 11 years, until September 1, 2029.

Section 3 ( Recommendation 2 ) commences the 60-day period within which the board must act on a license application on the date when all information, including supplementary information, necessary to process the application has been received rather than on the date when the application is first received.

Section 3 ( Recommendation 3 ) also aligns the educational requirements for initial licensure as an MLO with the educational requirements of the federal 'Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing Act of 2008' (the 'SAFE Act').

Section 4 ( Recommendation 4 ) aligns the standards for disqualifying prior convictions with the corresponding standards in the SAFE Act and applies those standards to renewal and revocation as well as initial licensure.

Section 5 ( Recommendation 5 ) allocates one of the 3 seats on the board that is assigned to mortgage loan originators (MLOs) to an MLO representing a small Colorado-based mortgage company that primarily brokers mortgage loans.

Status: Passed House and Senate - Awaits Governor's Action

HB18-1259: Marijuana Sample For Quality Product Development

The bill permits a medical marijuana optional premises cultivation licensee, a medical marijuana-infused products manufacturing licensee, a retail marijuana cultivation facility licensee, and a retail marijuana products manufacturing licensee to provide samples to managers for quality control and product development purposes. The bill specifies limits on the amount that can be provided as a sample per batch. The bill prohibits the licensee from:

  • Allowing the manager to consume the sample on site;
  • Allowing the manager to exceed his or her personal possession limits;
  • Providing or reselling the sample to another licensed employee, individual, or customer; and
  • Using the sample as a means of compensating the manager.

Status: Signed into Law by Governor

HB18-1267: Income Tax Credit For Retrofitting Home For Health

The bill provides an income tax credit to an individual who retrofits or hires someone to retrofit the individual's residence. The bill specifies that the retrofit must:

  • Be necessary to ensure the health, welfare, and safety of a qualified individual;
  • Increase the residence's visitability;
  • Enable greater accessibility and independence in the residence for a qualified individual;
  • Be required due to illness, impairment, or disability of a qualified individual; and
  • Allow a qualified individual to age in place.

Status: Passed House, Passed Senate Finance Committee - Introduced into House Appropriations Committee

HB18-1268: Recall Petition Election Special District Director

Section 4 of the bill requires the county clerk and recorder of the appropriate county to appoint a designated election official (DEO) to oversee the recall election. The director and the director's spouse or civil union partner cannot serve as the DEO.

The bill requires that recall petitions must be approved as to form by the DEO before being circulated. To be approved, a petition must designate a committee to represent the signers, must name only one director, and must include a brief statement of the grounds for the recall. It must also provide certain warnings to electors concerning their eligibility to sign.

Section 5 requires that signed petitions be filed with the DEO within 60 days after their form has been approved. Signed petitions must include a signed and notarized affidavit from the circulator attesting to the circulator's compliance with the requirements of the law. Once a signed petition is filed, the DEO is required to review the petition and issue a written determination that the petition is sufficient or not sufficient within 5 business days, unless a protest is filed before that date.

An eligible elector may file a protest of a recall petition within 15 days after a petition is filed. In the case of a protest, a hearing is required and the DEO is the hearing officer. The hearing officer is required to issue a determination that the petition is sufficient or not sufficient within 15 days after the conclusion of the hearing.

If a petition is determined not sufficient, the committee representing the electors may withdraw, amend, and refile it within 15 days. A petition can only be withdrawn and refiled once.

A determination that a petition is sufficient or not sufficient is subject to judicial review on request by the director, the director's representative, or a majority of the committee representing the electors, but judicial review cannot include the statement of the grounds on which the recall is sought.

If a petition is determined sufficient, the board of the special district must set a date for the recall election, and determine whether the election will take place at the polling place or by mail ballot. If a regular special district election is to be held within 180 days after the date on which the board orders the recall election, the recall election must be held as part of the regular election. If the director is seeking reelection at that regular election, only the question of his or her reelection appears on the ballot. If the director's successor is to be chosen at that regular election, and the director is not seeking reelection, only the selection of the successor appears on the ballot. The recall election may also be held as part of a coordinated election if the information required for the ballot is determined within the deadline, and the county clerk and recorder agrees.

Section 6 provides that if the director resigns in writing prior to the election, the recall proceedings are terminated and the office is filled as a vacancy. The ballot for a recall election must include the statement of grounds for the recall that was included in the petition. The director may file a statement in support of his or her retention, which must also be included on the ballot if it is timely filed. The ballot must also include the names of candidates nominated to fill the office if the director is recalled.

If an incumbent is not recalled, or if a recall petition is deemed not sufficient, section 7 authorizes the special district to reimburse the director for reasonable expenses. Under section 10 , the special district must pay the costs of the county clerk and recorder and the DEO for the recall election.

Section 8 provides that after one recall election that does not recall the director, any subsequent recall petition must be signed by more than 50% of the eligible electors to be sufficient. Section 11 makes a conforming amendment to the 'Uniform Election Code of 1992'.

Status: Passed House and Senate - Awaits Governor's Action

HB18-1271: Public Utilities Commission Electric Utilities Economic Development Rates

The bill allows the public utilities commission to approve, and electric utilities to charge, economic development rates, which are lower rates for commercial and industrial users who locate or expand their operations in Colorado so as to increase the demand by at least 3 megawatts. To qualify for the economic development rates, these users must demonstrate that the cost of electricity is a critical consideration in their decision where to locate or expand their business and that the availability of lower rates is a substantial factor. The rates may be offered for up to 10 years.

The bill also authorizes the expansion of a voluntary renewable energy program or service offering as necessary to meet the needs of a commercial or industrial customer that makes a capital investment of $250 million or more, requires the expansion in order to remain as a customer of a utility, or is a new customer.

Utilities that offer economic development rates shall not cross-subsidize the economic development rates by raising rates on other customers, and a utility bears the burden of proof on this issue in any proceeding before the commission.

Status: Passed House and Senate - Awaits Governor's Action

HB18-1352: Oil And Gas Facilities Distance From School Property

As part of the Colorado oil and gas conservation commission's (commission) authority to regulate oil and gas operations to prevent and mitigate significant adverse environmental impacts to protect public health, safety, and welfare, the commission requires oil and gas production facilities and wells to be located at least 1,000 feet from school buildings and other high occupancy buildings.

The bill clarifies that the minimum 1,000-foot distance from which newly permitted oil and gas production facilities and wells must be located from any school applies to the school property line and not the school building. The bill further clarifies that the minimum distance requirement does not apply if a school commences operations near oil and gas facilities or wells that are already actively in use or permitted; except that the minimum 1,000-foot distance applies to real property owned by a school district on which a future permanent or temporary school building is planned to be constructed within 5 years.

Status: Postponed Indefinitely by Senate State, Veterans & Military Affairs Committee

HB18-1381: Permissive Medical Marijuana Vertical Integration

Under current law, a medical marijuana center must source 70% of the medical marijuana it sells from its associated optional premises cultivation facility. Similarly, an optional premises cultivation facility must have 70% of the medical marijuana it cultivates sold through its associated medical marijuana center. The bill eliminates that requirement and allows medical marijuana centers to source medical marijuana from any optional premises cultivation facility.

The bill creates a transition period between the current limited sourcing model that begins July 1, 2018. For one year from that date, medical marijuana centers and optional premises cultivation facilities can purchase and sell 50% of their inventory as a wholesale transaction, and medical marijuana trim is not included in the calculation of the percentage. Then, on or after July 1, 2019, an optional premises cultivation facility may sell any amount of the medical marijuana it cultivates to any medical marijuana center. Similarly, a medical marijuana center may source its medical marijuana from any optional premises cultivation facility without restriction. Additionally, the state licensing authority shall adopt a production management system similar to the system in the retail marijuana code.

The bill allows a medical marijuana center to sell medical marijuana acquired from an optional premises cultivation facility licensee or medical marijuana-infused products manufacturer licensee. A medical marijuana center can sell more than 2 ounces to a patient if that patient has a recommended extended ounce count from his or her physician and registers with the medical marijuana center as his or her primary center. The patient also has to sign an affidavit that he or she does not have a primary caregiver cultivating medical marijuana on his or her behalf.

Status: Passed House and Senate - Awaits Governor's Action

HB18-1386: Allow Treasurer Collect Property Tax Prepayments

The bill authorizes a county treasurer to accept, at the option of a taxpayer, prepayments of property taxes. Payments can only be made within one year of when the taxes are due and no interest accrues to the taxpayer. The taxes collected are distributed to taxing entities in January of the year in which they become due.

Status: Postpone Indefinitely in House Finance Committee

HB18-1389: Centralized Marijuana Distribution Permit

The bill creates a centralized distribution permit to an optional premises cultivation facility or retail marijuana cultivation facility authorizing temporary storage on its licensed premises of marijuana concentrate or marijuana products for the sole purpose of transfer to the permit holder's respective commonly owned medical marijuana centers or retail marijuana stores.

Status: Passed House and Senate - Awaits Governor's Action

HB18-1398: Statute Of Limitations Domestic Violence Torts

The bill states that any civil action to recover damages caused by an act of domestic violence must be commenced within 6 years after a disability has been removed for a person under disability or within 6 years after a cause of action accrues, whichever occurs later.

Status: Passed Senate Finance Committee - Awaits Reading on Senate Floor

HB18-1422: Marijuana Testing Facilities Standardsm

The bill requires medical and retail marijuana testing facilities to be accredited pursuant to the International Organization for Standardization/International Electrotechnical Commission 17025:2005 standard by January 1, 2019. The state licensing authority can adopt rules providing for an extension of time to comply with the standard. The bill states that medical and retail marijuana testing is a matter of statewide concern.

Status: Passed House - Awaits Introduction Into Senate

HB18-1433: Naturopathic Doctor Terminology And Disclosure

As it relates to naturopathic doctors, the bill:

  • Requires that the statement provided to a patient before treatment disclose that the naturopathic doctor is registered;
  • Removes the requirement that naturopathic doctors use the term 'registered' in the naturopathic doctor's title;
  • Requires a naturopathic doctor to qualify any specialty services provided to the public with 'naturopathic' or 'naturopath'; and
  • Clarifies the circumstances under which a naturopathic doctor can use the term 'physician'.

Status: Passed House - Awaits Introduction Into Senate

SB18-138: Transfer Alcohol From Surrendered License

The bill allows persons with the following retail licenses to purchase alcohol beverages from another retail licensee when there is common ownership between the licensees and the seller has surrendered its license within the last 60 days:

  • Beer and wine;
  • Hotel and restaurant;
  • Tavern;
  • Retail gaming tavern;
  • Brew pub;
  • Club;
  • Arts nonprofit;
  • Racetrack;
  • Vintner's restaurant;
  • Distillery pub; or
  • Lodging and entertainment facility.

The seller must return all alcohol beverages bought on credit, allow wholesalers 30 days to purchase back inventory, have paid all wholesale bills, and sell to only one licensed premises. A wholesaler is prohibited from transporting the inventory from the seller's premises to the buyer's premises. The seller may transport the inventory.

Status: Signed Into Law by Governor

SB18-149: Records Of Denver Health And Hospital Authority

Currently, all records of the Denver health and hospital authority (authority) are subject to the open records law. The bill specifies that certain reports, statements, agreements, bonds, guidelines, manuals, handbooks, and accounts of the authority are public records. The bill also specifies that the content of an electronic medical record system and individual medical records or medical information are not public records, and that certain writings and other records concerning the modification, initiation, or cessation of patient care and authority health care programs or initiatives are not public records under certain circumstances.

Status: Signed Into Law by Governor

SB18-180: Colorado Trust Code

Colorado Commission on Uniform State Laws. Under current law, the administration of trusts is generally governed by certain provisions within the probate code. The bill repeals many of these provisions and creates a new Colorado trust code (code) outside the probate code to address trust administration. The new code includes provisions concerning:

  • Judicial proceedings;
  • Representation;
  • Creation, validity, modification, and termination of trusts;
  • Duties and powers of trustees; and
  • Liabilities of trustees and rights of persons dealing with trustees.

The bill also makes conforming amendments.

Status: Signed Into Law by Governor

SB18-223: Autopsy Reports Death Of A Minor

The bill specifies that an autopsy report prepared in connection with the death of a minor is confidential and may be disclosed by the county coroner to any other person or entity only in accordance with certain exceptions.

Under the bill, the coroner or his or her designee may only provide a copy of the autopsy report prepared in connection with the death of a minor to:

  • A parent or legal guardian of the deceased if the parent or legal guardian submits a copy of a written request to the coroner for a copy of the report in addition to an affidavit, signed by the parent or legal guardian under the penalty of perjury, verifying his or her relationship to the decedent;
  • A law enforcement or criminal justice agency, including a district attorney, that is either investigating the death or prosecuting a criminal violation arising out of the death upon the request of the law enforcement or criminal justice agency;
  • A requesting party in a civil case where the moving party demonstrates to the court that the autopsy report is discoverable in accordance with the Colorado rules of civil procedure, upon the entry of a specific order of the court authorizing disclosure of the autopsy report, and in accordance with any protective order necessary to limit disclosure of the identity of the deceased and other identifying personal information;
  • Counsel for the defendant or the respondent for discovery purposes in a criminal case upon the entry of a specific order of the court authorizing disclosure of the autopsy report in accordance with the relevant rules of criminal procedure;
  • A law enforcement agency that is investigating the death upon the request of the law enforcement agency;
  • A local or regional child fatality prevention review team upon the request of the review team; or
  • The Colorado department of public health and environment as necessary for the collection of data in accordance with the Colorado violent death reporting system.

Status: Passed Senate - Introduced to House Judiciary Committee

SB18-230: Modify Laws Drilling Units Pooling Orders

The bill specifies that an autopsy report prepared in connection with the death of a minor is confidential and may be disclosed by the county coroner to any other person or entity only in accordance with certain exceptions.

Under the bill, the coroner or his or her designee may only provide a copy of the autopsy report prepared in connection with the death of a minor to:

  • A parent or legal guardian of the deceased if the parent or legal guardian submits a copy of a written request to the coroner for a copy of the report in addition to an affidavit, signed by the parent or legal guardian under the penalty of perjury, verifying his or her relationship to the decedent;
  • A law enforcement or criminal justice agency, including a district attorney, that is either investigating the death or prosecuting a criminal violation arising out of the death upon the request of the law enforcement or criminal justice agency;
  • A requesting party in a civil case where the moving party demonstrates to the court that the autopsy report is discoverable in accordance with the Colorado rules of civil procedure, upon the entry of a specific order of the court authorizing disclosure of the autopsy report, and in accordance with any protective order necessary to limit disclosure of the identity of the deceased and other identifying personal information;
  • Counsel for the defendant or the respondent for discovery purposes in a criminal case upon the entry of a specific order of the court authorizing disclosure of the autopsy report in accordance with the relevant rules of criminal procedure;
  • A law enforcement agency that is investigating the death upon the request of the law enforcement agency;
  • A local or regional child fatality prevention review team upon the request of the review team; or
  • The Colorado department of public health and environment as necessary for the collection of data in accordance with the Colorado violent death reporting system.

Status: Passed House and Senate - Awaits Governor's Action

SB18-248: Additional Revenues Urban Renewal Projects

Under current law, in connection with the use of a special fund (fund) of an urban renewal authority (authority) to collect the increment used to finance urban renewal projects, any additional revenues received by a municipality, county, special district, or school district (collectively, taxing entity) resulting because the voters have authorized the taxing entity to retain and spend such money under the TABOR requirements of the state constitution after the creation of the fund or as a result of an increase in the property tax mill levy approved by the voters of the taxing entity after the creation of the fund, to the extent the total mill levy of any taxing entity exceeds the respective mill levy in effect at the time of approval or substantial modification of the urban renewal plan, are not included in the amount of the increment that is allocated to and, when collected, paid into the special fund.

Under the bill, such additional revenues that have been received because of the 2 specified forms of voter-approved revenue changes are restricted from being pledged by an authority for the payment of any bonds of, or any loans or advances to, or any indebtedness incurred by the authority without the consent of the relevant taxing entity. To the extent the authority has received a certain notification specified in the bill, such additional revenues shall then be promptly repaid by the authority to the municipality or other taxing entity. The bill requires the authority to be notified of the amount of additional revenues and the calculations used in computing the amount by the applicable municipality or other taxing entity prior to making repayment and, in any event, not later than February 1 in each fiscal year following the year in which a voter-approved revenue increase has taken effect.

The bill permits an authority and a municipality or any other taxing entity to negotiate for the purpose of entering into an agreement on the issues of the amount of repayment, the mechanics of how repayment of the additional revenues will be accomplished, a method for resolving disputes regarding the amount of repayment, and whether the municipality or taxing entity will waive the repayment requirement, singularly or in combination, and are further authorized to enter into an intergovernmental agreement regarding any of these issues.

Status: Passed House and Senate - Awaits Governor's Action