2020 Pending Bills of Interest
City of Boulder

HB20-1001 Nicotine Product Regulation 
Subject: PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: K. Mullica (D) | C. Larson (R) / J. Bridges (D) | K. Priola (R)
Summary: Raises the age of sale to 21 for persons to whom cigarettes, tobacco products, and nicotine products may be sold. The bill would also significantly enhance underage sales enforcement by requiring retailers to obtain a state license. Under current law, fines are often too low to dissuade retailers from cracking down on underage sales, and no process exists to take away a retailer’s ability to sell nicotine products if they repeatedly sell products to minors. Under HB20-1001, the state could suspend a retailer’s license for repeatedly violating state law. The bill would also mandate more frequent compliance checks and moves that responsibility to the Department of Revenue. In addition to raising the age of sale, increasing compliance checks and creating a robust enforcement mechanism, the bill would close a loophole that allows for the sale of vaping products online. The online loophole makes it far easier for Colorado youth to purchase vaping products and then sell them in schools. In an effort to further combat youth nicotine use, the bill would prohibit flashy advertising in stores that appeals to youth. It would also prohibit new tobacco product retailers from opening within 500 feet of a school.
Status: 7/14/2020 Governor Signed

HB20-1004 Assistance Landowner Wildfire Mitigation 
Subject: NATURAL RESOURCES, WILDFIRE AND PARKS
Boulder's Interest: Support in accordance with position 42 in favor of “federal and state legislation that promotes wildfire mitigation and forest restoration efforts in the wild land/urban interface.” Provided the city was awarded, this program would offer substantial assistance in the City of Boulder’s home assessment program.
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: L. Cutter (D) | P. Will (R) / P. Lee (D)
Summary:

Wildfire Matters Review Committee. The bill establishes the wildfire mitigation resources and best practices grant program (grant program) within the division of local government in the department of local affairs. Grant recipients use grant money to conduct outreach among landowners to inform them of resources available for wildfire mitigation and best practices for wildfire mitigation. The grant program only awards grants to applicants conducting outreach to landowners in high wildfire hazard areas and prioritizes applications based on the potential impact of the applicant's proposed outreach.

The bill also extends the increased wildfire mitigation income tax deduction that allows a landowner to claim 100%, rather than 50%, of the costs they incur in performing wildfire mitigation measures.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)

Status: 6/16/2020 House Committee on Appropriations Lay Over Unamended - Amendment(s) Failed

HB20-1037 Augmentation Of Instream Flows 
Subject: NATURAL RESOURCES, WILDLIFE AND PARKS
Boulder's Interest: The bill is consistent with the city’s longstanding support of the Colorado instream flow program and provides additional flexibility for the Colorado Water Conservation Board to use previously changed water rights to augment instream flows.  The bill requires the CWCB to file an application with the water court for a plan for augmentation and is limited to water rights that have previously been quantified and changed for augmentation.  The bill, as amended, further provides that additional terms and conditions must be imposed as necessary to prevent injury to other vested water rights or decreed conditional water rights and is protective of the city’s water rights.
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: J. Arndt (D) / D. Coram (R)
Summary:

The act authorizes the Colorado water conservation board to augment stream flows to preserve or improve the natural environment to a reasonable degree by use of an acquired water right that has been previously quantified and changed to include any augmentation use, without a further change of the water right being required.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 3/24/2020 Governor Signed

HB20-1064 Public Utilities Commission Study Of Community Choice Energy 
Subject: CLIMATE CHANGE AND COMMUNITY RESILIENCE
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: E. Hooton (D)
Summary:

Investor-owned Utility Review Interim Study Committee. The bill declares that the concept of "community choice energy" (CCE), under which a community may choose to purchase electricity at wholesale through a supplier other than the local investor-owned electric utility, has the potential to enable communities to meet their renewable energy goals and save money without disrupting the local utility's current status as sole supplier of transmission, distribution, and customer service functions. To lay the groundwork for potential adoption of CCE in Colorado, the bill proposes 2 studies:

  • A feasibility study, conducted by an independent energy expert under the guidance of the public utilities commission (PUC), to examine the financial and technical requirements that would need to be met for CCE to be viable and beneficial; and
  • An investigatory proceeding at the PUC, inviting testimony and documentation from persons with firsthand knowledge of utility operations, CCE, or both, including regulators from other states in which CCE has been implemented. The goal of the investigation is to identify best practices and recommend legislative changes that would allow CCE to function well in Colorado if adopted.

The bill directs that reports of the results of the feasibility study and the investigatory docket be given to the legislative committees with jurisdiction over energy matters in late 2020.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)

Status: 6/16/2020 House Committee on Appropriations Lay Over Unamended - Amendment(s) Failed

HB20-1119 State Government Regulation Of Perfluoroalkyl And Polyfluoroalkyl Substances 
Subject: WATER
Boulder's Interest: Support in accordance with position number 65 of the policy agenda, "support legislation that promotes the preservation of water quality in a manner that is not unduly burdensome to the operation of the municipal water system.
Current bill language could cause significant burden on cities, and amendments have been proposed to release some of the regulatory burden for local governments.

While Boulder’s liability risk with PFAS in its water distribution and wastewater systems is low, the bill as drafted is unclear with respect to local government liability for clean-up. There is also a concern about redundant regulatory authority of the Water Quality Control Commission for regulating PFAS, in addition to concerns of aligning the proposed bill with the draft narrative policy that is concurrently being proposed at the administrative level by the Water Quality Control Division to the Water Quality Control Commission this spring.
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: T. Exum (D) | L. Landgraf / D. Hisey (R) | P. Lee (D)
Summary: Bill addresses the following: • When PFAS may be used for firefighting foam system testing in aircraft hangars • Grants CDPHE power to adopt standards and regulations requiring public drinking water systems to sample PFAS in water supply and finished water. • Clarifies Water Quality Control Commission may set standards related to PFAS in surface water and groundwater and may require wastewater systems to collect PFAS data. • Requires solid and hazardous waste commission to promulgate rules for certificate of registration for facility or fire dept possessing PFAS in firefighting agents or equipment and for standards re disposal of PFAS in firefighting agents or equipment.
Status: 6/22/2020 Sent to the Governor

HB20-1138 Public Real Property Index 
Subject: LOCAL CONTROL
Boulder's Interest: This would create a high-impact unfunded mandate for Boulder requiring significant staff time, process changes, software implementation, etc. That said, the city’s new Real Estate Office is going to need, and will likely be doing, much of the work anyways based on assessment report recommendations. Hopefully we will be in a better position with reducing impact over time to answer these types of requests with the Real Estate Office coming online.
Position: Oppose
News:
Sponsors: J. Coleman | C. Larson (R) / J. Bridges (D) | B. Gardner (R)
Summary:

Not later than December 31, 2020, the bill requires each state agency, state institution of higher education, and political subdivision of the state to submit to the office of the state architect (office) a list of all usable real property owned by or under the control of the agency, institution, or political subdivision of the state. This list must include, if applicable:

  • The address where the real property is located;
  • The size of the real property;
  • How the real property is zoned;
  • Contact information for the state agency, institution, or political subdivision of the state that owns or controls the real property;
  • The plan, if one is available, for the use, development, or sale of the real property; and
  • A description that includes the condition of the real property and a measurement of total area of the real property that is vacant, unused, or underdeveloped.

Not later than December 31 of each subsequent year, each state agency, state institution, and political subdivision of the state must submit to the office any updates to the information the agency, institution, or political subdivision of the state originally submitted to the office about the usable real property the agency, institution, or political subdivision of the state owns or controls.

Beginning July 1, 2021, whenever any state agency, state institution of higher education, or political subdivision of the state plans to offer any usable real property for sale, or otherwise plans to solicit any offer to purchase real property, the agency, institution, or political subdivision of the state shall notify the office.

Not later than July 1, 2021, the office must establish and maintain a current database that includes the information listed above. This database must be available free of charge to the public on the office's website.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)

Status: 6/16/2020 House Committee on Appropriations Lay Over Unamended - Amendment(s) Failed

HB20-1151 Expand Authority For Regional Transportation Improvements 
Subject: TRANSPORTATION
Boulder's Interest: The city supports to continued option to partner with other governments to create RTAs to help fund regional transportation needs. It, however, opposes any modification to the RTA statute that would allow it to be involuntarily included into an RTA.
Position: Amend
News:
Sponsors: M. Gray (D) / F. Winter (D)
Summary:

The bill authorizes a transportation planning organization (TPO) to exercise the powers of a regional transportation authority (RTA). Among other powers, the powers of a RTA include the power to impose various charges, fees, and, with voter approval, visitor benefit, sales, and use taxes to generate transportation funding. Any additional transportation funding obtained by a TPO exercising the power of a RTA are intended to supplement and not supplant state transportation funding allocated within the boundaries. Therefore, the transportation commission and the department of transportation (CDOT) are prohibited from taking such additional transportation funding into account when determining the amount of state transportation funding to be allocated within the boundaries of a TPO, and CDOT, when submitting its annual proposed budget allocation plan, is required to provide evidence that the proposed allocation of state transportation funding within the boundaries of any TPO that has obtained such additional transportation funding has not been reduced in any way on account of the additional transportation funding.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)

Status: 6/16/2020 House Committee on Appropriations Lay Over Unamended - Amendment(s) Failed

HB20-1155 Higher Efficiency New Construction Residence 
Subject: CLIMATE CHANGE AND COMMUNITY RESILIENCE
Boulder's Interest: Position 5 of the city's Policy Agenda indicates support for the beneficial electrification of buildings.
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: A. Valdez (D) | M. Weissman (D) / C. Hansen (D) | K. Priola (R)
Summary:

Preexisting law requires a home builder to offer to a buyer of a new home one of the following:

  • A solar panel system or a solar thermal system;
  • To prewire or preplumb the home for these systems; or
  • A chase or conduit to wire or plumb the home for these systems in the future.

The act requires the home builder to offer each of these options to the buyer and deletes these requirements for manufactured homes.

The act also requires a home builder to offer the following options to a buyer of a newly constructed residence, which is defined to mean a traditional detached, single-family home:

  • An electric vehicle charging system; upgrades of wiring to accommodate future installation of an electric vehicle charging system; or a 208- to 240-volt alternating current plug-in located in a place accessible to a motor vehicle parking area;
  • Efficient electric heating and water heating options; and
  • Pricing, energy efficiency, and utility bill information for each option available from the builder.

The Colorado energy office must develop basic consumer education about leased solar installation and purchased solar installation in consultation with industries that offer these options to consumers.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 6/30/2020 Governor Signed

HB20-1157 Loaned Water For Instream Flows To Improve Environment 
Subject: WATER
Boulder's Interest: The bill is consistent with the city’s longstanding support of the Colorado instream flow program and provides additional flexibility for the Colorado Water Conservation Board to use loaned water to improve instream flows.  The bill expands an existing program and includes limitations that are protective of senior water rights.
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: D. Roberts (D) | P. Will (R) / K. Donovan (D)
Summary:

Under current law, the Colorado water conservation board (board), subject to procedural requirements established to prevent injury to water rights and decreed conditional water rights, may use loaned water for instream flows if the loaned water is used for preserving the natural environment of a stream reach that is subject to a decreed instream flow water right held by the board. The act expands the number of years within a 10-year period that a renewable loan may be exercised from 3 years to 5 years, but for no more than 3 consecutive years, and allows a loan to be renewed for up to 2 additional 10-year periods. The act limits the duration that an expedited loan may be exercised for up to one year, and prohibits an applicant from seeking additional expedited loans regarding a water right following an approved expedited loan of that water right.

The act also expands the board's ability to use loaned water for instream flows to improve the natural environment to a reasonable degree pursuant to a decreed instream flow water right held by the board.

In considering whether to accept a proposed loan, the board must evaluate the proposed loan based on biological and scientific evidence presented, including a biological analysis performed by the division of parks and wildlife.

The state engineer will review a proposed loan and must consider any comments filed by parties notified of the application in determining whether the loaned water will not cause injury to other vested or conditionally decreed water rights, decreed exchanges of water, or undecreed existing exchanges of water that were administratively approved before the date that the loan application was filed. The filing fee is increased from $100 to $300.

The board is required to promulgate rules regarding the necessary steps for reviewing and accepting a loan for instream flow use to improve the natural environment to a reasonable degree.

The state engineer's decision to approve or deny a proposed loan may be appealed to a water judge, who is required to hear and determine the matter on an expedited basis using the procedures and standards established for matters rereferred to the water judge by a water referee.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 3/20/2020 Governor Signed

HB20-1162 Prohibit Food Establishments' Use Of Polystyrene 
Subject: CLIMATE/ZERO WASTE
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: L. Cutter (D) | J. Singer / M. Foote | T. Story (D)
Summary:

Effective January 1, 2022, the bill prohibits a retail food establishment from distributing an expanded polystyrene product for use as a container for ready-to-eat food in this state. The executive director of the department of public health and environment or the executive director's designee may, through the attorney general, seek injunctive relief against a retail food establishment that violates the prohibition.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)

Status: 5/28/2020 House Second Reading Laid Over to 12/31/2020 - No Amendments

HB20-1163 Management Of Single-use Products 
Subject: CLIMATE/ZERO WASTE
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: A. Valdez (D) | E. Sirota (D) / J. Gonzales (D)
Summary: Prohibits stores and retail food establishments, from providing single-use plastic carryout bags, single-use plastic stirrers, single-use plastic straws, and expanded polystyrene food service products to customers at the point of sale. Charges customers a 10 cent fee for recyclable paper bags. Amendments added to 1) carve out polystyrene, 2) alter the timeline to phase in the bag fee, and 3) making the rest of the bill language consistent with the amendments.
Status: 5/28/2020 House Second Reading Laid Over to 12/31/2020 - No Amendments

HB20-1196 Mobile Home Park Act Updates 
Subject: HOUSING
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: E. Hooton (D) | J. McCluskie (D) / S. Fenberg (D) | P. Lee (D)
Summary: The bill: • Defines what constitutes “retaliation” and prohibits its use against a homeowner who asserts rights under the MHPA; • Requires transparency and equity in water billing; • Protects homeowners from arbitrary or unfair evictions; • Requires maintenance and repair of the park, operable utilities, and compensation to displaced homeowners when these requirements are not met; • Increases homeowner rights to privacy; and • Prohibits unfair park rules from being imposed on homeowners.
Status: 6/30/2020 Governor Signed

HB20-1201 Mobile Home Park Residents Opportunity To Purchase 
Subject: HOUSING
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: E. Hooton (D) | S. Gonzales-Gutierrez (D) / D. Moreno (D) | J. Ginal (D)
Summary:

The act gives home owners in a mobile home park the opportunity to make an offer to buy the park if the landlord anticipates selling it or changing the use of the land. A landlord must give notice of a pending sale to the home owners, the applicable municipality or county, the division of housing in department of local affairs, and each home owners' association, residents' association, or similar body that represents the residents of the park. A landlord must give notice of a pending change of use of the land to all home owners of the park at least 12 months before the change of use occurs. After receiving notice of a pending sale or change of use, home owners have 90 days to make an offer to purchase and arrange financing if necessary. A purchase may be made by an association representing at least 51% of the home owners. The landlord may request that information relating to any pending offer be kept confidential and, if the landlord so requests, the association is required to do so.

If a sale of a mobile home park occurs and the home owners are not the buyers, the landlord must send the municipality or county and the division of housing an affidavit of compliance with the requirements of the act.

The notice and purchase-option provisions do not apply if the proposed sale is to a family member of the landlord, another closely affiliated person or entity, or someone who is already a cotenant of the property or if a transfer occurs due to inheritance or eminent domain.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 6/30/2020 Governor Signed

HB20-1319 Prohibit Sale Of Flavored Nicotine Products 
Subject: PUBLIC HEALTH AND SAFETY
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: Y. Caraveo (D) | K. Becker / R. Fields (D) | K. Priola (R)
Summary: Prohibit the sale of flavored cigarettes, tobacco products, and nicotine products, including flavored electronic cigarettes, and products intended to be added to cigarettes, tobacco products, or nicotine products to produce a flavor other than tobacco. The city is supporting this bill which is awaiting its first hearing in the House Health and Insurance Committee.
Status: 5/28/2020 House Second Reading Laid Over to 12/31/2020 - No Amendments

HB20-1360 2020-21 Long Bill 
Subject: STATE FINANCES
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Actively Monitor
News:
Sponsors: D. Esgar (D) / D. Moreno (D)
Summary:

For the state fiscal year beginning July 1, 2020, provides for the payment of expenses of the executive, legislative, and judicial departments of the state of Colorado, and of its agencies and institutions, for and during the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2020. The grand total for the operating budget is set at $32,749,518,270 of which $11,743,636,837 is from the general funds portion of the appropriation; $198,516,570 is from the general fund exempt portion; $9,426,117,669 is from the cash funds portion; $1,589,469,135 is from the reappropriated funds portion; and $9,791,778,059 is from the federal funds portion.

The grand total for the state fiscal year beginning July 1, 2020, for capital construction projects is $113,860,792 of which $2,988,768 is from the capital construction fund portion of the appropriation; $75,374,568 is from the cash funds portion; and $35,497,456 is from the federal funds portion.

The 2018 general appropriation act is amended to balance and make adjustments to the total amount appropriated to the departments of education, health care policy and financing, higher education, and state.

The 2019 general appropriation act is amended to balance and make adjustments to the total amount appropriated to the departments of corrections, education, health care policy and financing, higher education, human services, state, and treasury, and the judicial department.

Appropriations made in Senate Bill 19-059, concerning creation of an automatic enrollment in advanced courses grant program in the department of education and House Bill 19-1002, concerning professional development in leadership for public school principals, are amended to reduce the amount appropriated to the department of education.

Appropriations made in Senate Bill 19-190, concerning measures to increase the number of individuals who are well-prepared to teach in public schools, Senate Bill 19-231, concerning the creation of the Colorado second chance scholarship in the pursuit of higher education for youth previously committed to the division of youth services, and Senate Bill 19-003, concerning the educator loan forgiveness program to address educator shortages, are amended to the reduce the amount appropriated to the department of higher education.

Appropriations made in Senate Bill 19-211, concerning changes to the mental health criminal justice diversion programs, is amended to reduce the amount appropriated to the judicial department.

Appropriations made in House Bill 19-1090, concerning measures to allow greater investment flexibility in marijuana businesses, is amended to clarify that a specified amount shall remain available for expenditure through the 2020-21 fiscal year.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 6/25/2020 Sent to the Governor

HB20-1415 Whistleblower Protection Public Health Emergencies 
Subject: LOCAL CONTROL
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Actively Monitor
News:
Sponsors: L. Herod (D) | T. Sullivan (D) / B. Pettersen (D) | R. Rodriguez (D)
Summary:

The act prohibits a principal, which includes an employer, certain labor contractors, public employers, and entities that contract with 5 or more independent contractors, from discriminating, retaliating, or taking adverse action against any worker who:

  • In good faith, raises any concern about workplace health and safety practices or hazards related to a public health emergency to the principal, the principal's agent, other workers, a government agency, or the public if the workplace health and safety practices fail to meet guidelines established by a federal, state, or local public health agency with jurisdiction over the workplace;
  • Voluntarily wears at the worker's workplace the worker's own personal protective equipment, such as a mask, faceguard, or gloves, under specified circumstances; or
  • Opposes a practice the worker reasonably believes is unlawful or makes a charge, testifies, assists, or participates in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing of alleged unlawful acts.

Additionally, a principal is prohibited from requiring or attempting to require a worker to sign a contract or other agreement that limits or prevents the worker from disclosing information about workplace health and safety practices or hazards related to a public health emergency.

A worker who knowingly discloses false information or discloses information with reckless disregard for the truth or falsity of the information is not protected under the act.

A person may seek relief by:

  • Filing a complaint with the division of labor standards and statistics (division) in the department of labor and employment;
  • Bringing an action in district court, after exhausting administrative remedies; or
  • Bringing a whistleblower action in the name of the state in district court, after exhausting administrative remedies.

The division is authorized to adopt rules necessary to implement the act.

$270,153 is appropriated to the department of labor and employment from the employment support fund, of which $206,193 is allocated for use by the division for enforcement of worker's rights related to a public health emergency, based on the assumption that the division will require an additional 2.5 FTE, and $63,960 is reappropriated to the department of law for legal services.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 7/11/2020 Governor Signed

HB20-1427 Cigarette Tobacco And Nicotine Products Tax 
Subject:
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News: COLORADO LEGISLATURE APPROVES BILL PUTTING TOBACCO TAX INCREASE ON THE BALLOT
Chaos and compromise: Colorado Legislature ends with a flurry of big bills
Sponsors: Y. Caraveo (D) | J. McCluskie (D) / R. Fields (D) | D. Moreno (D)
Summary:

The act refers a ballot issue to the voters at the November 2020 general election for the following tax changes:

  • To increase the statutory per cigarette tax from 1 cent to 6.5 cents until July 1, 2024, then to 8 cents until July 1, 2027, and thereafter to 10 cents;
  • To increase the statutory tobacco products tax from 20% of the manufacturer's list price (MLP) to 30% of MLP until July 1, 2024, then to 36% of MLP until July 1, 2027, and to 42% thereafter of MLP for tobacco products;
  • To create a tax on nicotine products that is equal to 50% of MLP until July 1, 2024, then 56% of MLP until July 1, 2027, and thereafter 62% of MLP, which is the same tax as the total tax levied on most tobacco products, including the tax from Amendment 35, with the increase;
  • To establish a tax rate for cigarettes, tobacco products, and nicotine products that are modified risk tobacco products approved by the United States department of health and human services that is 50% of the statutory tax rate;
  • To establish a minimum tax for tobacco products that are moist snuff;
  • To expand the cigarette and tobacco products taxes to include delivery sales made by a seller outside of the state directly to a consumer; and
  • To create an inventory tax on cigarettes that is imposed on all stamped cigarettes and unaffixed stamps in a wholesaler or wholesale subcontractor's possession or control at the time of a tax increase that takes place after January 1, 2022.

If voters approve the ballot measure, then the state will have the authority to impose these taxes and the rest of the act will be effective.

The act also establishes a minimum price for cigarettes that is equal to $7 for a pack and $70 for a carton until July 1, 2024, and $7.50 for a pack and $75 for a carton on and after July 1, 2024, and civil penalties imposed for any person who sells cigarettes for less than the minimum amount. A portion of the sales tax revenue that is estimated to be attributable to the minimum price requirement is transferred from the general fund to the newly created preschool programs cash fund, from which the general assembly may appropriate money to a designated department to be used for an array of preschool education purposes.

The new nicotine products tax is modeled after the tobacco products tax. Nicotine products are products that contain nicotine and that are ingested into the body, which at this time is typically through vaping with an electronic cigarette. The excise tax is levied on the sale, use, consumption, handling, or distribution of all nicotine products in the state, and it is imposed on a distributor at the time the product is brought into the state, made here, or shipped or transported to retailers in the state, or the wholesaler or distributor makes a delivery sale. If a distributor fails to pay the tax, then any person or entity in possession of the nicotine products is liable for the tax.

To be a distributor of nicotine products, a person must have a license. The license costs $10 per year and requires that the distributor must have a tax license and comply with all of the laws relating to the collection of the tax. Distributors are required to file electronic quarterly returns. Licensees are required to maintain certain records, and retailers are likewise required to maintain records about nicotine products they purchase from a licensed distributor. The department of revenue may share the names and addresses of persons who purchased nicotine products for resale with the department of public health and environment and county and district public health agencies.

To account for the fully phased-in increased taxes per cigarette, the discount percentage on cigarette stamps that a cigarette wholesaler may retain for its collection costs is reduced from 4% to .4% and the similar discount for a tobacco products distributor is reduced from 3.33% to 1.6%. A nicotine products distributor will be permitted to retain 1.1% of the taxes collected.

The revenue from the new nicotine products tax, the inventory tax, and the additional cigarette and tobacco products taxes is deposited in the old age pension fund and then credited to the general fund in accordance with the state constitution. The state treasurer is required to transfer an amount equal to the total new tax revenue from the general fund to the 2020 tax holding fund (holding fund). For fiscal years beginning prior to July 1, 2023, the bulk of the money in the holding fund will be transferred to the state education fund, and thereafter, to the preschool programs cash fund. In addition, the state treasurer is required to transfer varying amounts of money in different fiscal years from the holding fund to the following funds:

  • The tobacco tax cash fund;
  • The general fund;
  • The housing development grant fund;
  • The eviction legal defense fund;
  • The newly created rural schools cash fund, which will in turn be distributed to small and large rural school districts based on funded pupil counts; and
  • The tobacco education programs fund.

The state auditor is required to annually conduct a financial audit of the use of the new tax revenue.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 7/8/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-006 Amend Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative 
Subject: UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: R. Zenzinger (D) | T. Story (D) / C. Kipp (D) | M. Baisley (R)
Summary:

The act amends provisions relating to the Colorado opportunity scholarship initiative (COSI), including:

  • Removing the definition of "tuition assistance" and replacing it with a definition for "financial assistance", which is tied to cost of attendance, and making amendments throughout to reflect the changed terms;
  • Removing the statutory restriction that not more than 10% of money in the COSI fund in any fiscal year may be awarded to state agencies and nonprofit organizations for student success and support services and for other services, and the requirement that a certain percentage of the money awarded for student success and support services and for other services be awarded to nongovernmental entities;
  • Changing the current provision that, to the extent practicable, scholarships must be equally distributed between students who are eligible for federal PELL grants and students within a certain range of income. Instead, the act requires scholarships to be equitably distributed between students with an expected family contribution, as defined in the act, of less than 100% of the annual federal PELL grant award and students with an expected family contribution between 100% and 250% of the annual federal PELL grant award.
  • Removing references to obsolete reports and requirements.

The act amends provisions relating to the payment of administrative expenses by authorizing the department of higher education to spend from the COSI fund an amount equal to not more than 7.5% of total expenditures from the fund for the prior fiscal year unless the general assembly modifies the percentage in the annual budget act.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 3/20/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-017 Transportation Public-private Partnership Reporting 
Subject: TRANSPORTATION
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: F. Winter (D) / M. Gray (D)
Summary:

The high-performance transportation enterprise (HPTE) enters into public-private partnerships, which are contractual agreements between HPTE and one or more private or public entities, to deliver or contribute to the delivery of surface transportation projects and provides an annual report on its activities to the legislative committees that have jurisdiction over transportation. The act requires HPTE to include in the annual report, for each of its executed or proposed public-private partnerships, summaries of:

  • The processes that HPTE has used leading up to or anticipates using to lead up to its entry into the public-private partnership, including the processes for obtaining and responding to public questions, concerns, and other comments or input, the processes for keeping the state legislators and local elected officials who represent any area in which a surface transportation infrastructure project of the public-private partnership will be located informed and updated about the project and the public-private partnership, and the processes for selecting each partner to the public-private partnership; and
  • The actual major financial, performance, and length-of-term provisions of its executed public-private partnerships and, to the extent feasible, the anticipated major financial, performance, and length-of-term provisions of its proposed public-private partnerships.
    (Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 3/20/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-030 Consumer Protections For Utility Customers 
Subject: CLIMATE CHANGE AND COMMUNITY RESILIENCE
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Actively Monitor
News:
Sponsors: L. Garcia (D) | R. Rodriguez (D) / D. Esgar (D)
Summary:

The act directs the public utilities commission (PUC) to exercise its existing authority to require information from regulated public utilities in the areas of:

  • The number of utility customers who are exempted from tiered rates due to a medical condition or the use of medical equipment requiring higher amounts of electricity than other customers, and the efforts the public utilities are taking to ensure that customers entitled to the exemption are able to do so; and
  • Disconnections and delinquencies, including the number of disconnections and a narrative analysis of any trends or inconsistencies revealed by the data.

The act also raises the income threshold for eligibility for a medical exemption from tiered electricity rates from 250% of the federal poverty level (FPL) to 400% of the FPL.

The act directs the PUC, on or before September 1, 2020, to open rulemaking proceedings to prescribe standard practices for disconnection due to nonpayment, including the provision of resources to support customers in multiple languages, as appropriate to the geographic areas served; standard terms for repayment plans to cure delinquencies; and a prohibition on remote disconnection without a reasonable attempt to make contact with the customer of record by telephone or engaging in a personal, physical visit to the premises.

For any change in a public utility's rate design approved on or after September 1, 2020, the act requires that the change of design be revenue-neutral and creates a presumption that a change of design that has a disproportionate impact on low-income residential customers compared to other residential customers is presumed to be contrary to the public interest.

The act appropriates $16,545 to the department of regulatory agencies for use by the PUC.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 6/29/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-055 Incentivize Development Recycling End Markets 
Subject: CLIMATE CHANGE AND COMMUNITY RESILIENCE
Boulder's Interest: Support in direct accordance with position 12 section C. The bill takes a comprehensive approach which addresses several intervention points from educating consumers, creating end markets, exploring policies for producer responsibility, and offering financial incentives for businesses. These efforts could help stabilize the recycling market and increase participation rates from communities and businesses.
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: K. Priola (R) | T. Story (D) / L. Cutter (D) | J. Arndt (D)
Summary: • Directs the pollution prevention advisory board to make a recommendation for the structure and governing guidance of a recycling market development center • Literature review of what the industry as well as other states are doing • Allows the use of recycling resources economic opportunity fund and front range waste diversion cash fund to offer a business incentive for recycling • Requires a statewide recycling education campaign
Status: 7/13/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-061 Yield To Bicycles In Bicycle Lanes 
Subject: TRANSPORTATION/VISION ZERO
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News:
Sponsors: M. Foote / K. Becker
Summary:

The act creates a new traffic offense for failing to yield to a bicyclist or other authorized user in a bicycle lane. The offense is a class A traffic offense unless it is the proximate cause of a crash or if it causes bodily injury, then it is careless driving and is punished under the careless driving offense.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 3/20/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-090 Limit Liability For Food Donations To Nonprofits 
Subject: CLIMATE CHANGE AND COMMUNITY RESILIENCE
Boulder's Interest: Boulder has at least one correctional facility within city limits, the Boulder County Jail. As a city Boulder is looking for ways of donating food to food insecure populations so we welcome this release of liability for everyone and anyone because the liability has been a threat in a factual and perceptual way with donating food. Helps provide new food and supports any future initiatives we would take to further food waste diversion.
Position: Actively Monitor
News:
Sponsors: F. Winter (D) / D. Esgar (D) | B. Titone (D)
Summary:

Correctional facilities, school districts, hospitals, and retail food establishments are encouraged to donate apparently wholesome food to local nonprofit organizations for distribution to needy or poor individuals. Correctional facilities, school districts, and hospitals that donate items of food to nonprofit organizations are provided limited immunity from civil and criminal liability, which limited immunity state law already provided to donor retail food establishments. The immunity does not apply to willful, wanton, or reckless acts of donors that result in injury to recipients of the donated foods.

A farmer who allows one or more individuals to enter the farmer's property for the purpose of gleaning produce for donation to a nonprofit organization for use or distribution in providing assistance to needy or poor persons is not liable for damages in any civil action or subject to prosecution in any criminal proceeding resulting from an injury to any such individual unless the injury results from a willful or wanton act or omission of the farmer.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 6/26/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-138 Consumer Protection Construction Defect Time Period 
Subject: HOUSING
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Actively Monitor
News:
Sponsors: R. Rodriguez (D)
Summary:

The bill:

  • Increases the statutory limitation period for actions based on construction defects from 6 years to 10 years;
  • Allows tolling of the limitation period on any statutory or equitable basis; and
  • Requires tolling of the limitation period until the claimant discovers not only some physical manifestation of a construction defect but also its cause.
    (Note: This summary applies to this bill as introduced.)

Status: 5/28/2020 Senate Second Reading Laid Over to 12/31/2020 - No Amendments

SB20-205 Sick Leave For Employees 
Subject:
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Actively Monitor
News: 12 bills Colorado lawmakers passed in 2020 that you should know about
Sponsors: S. Fenberg (D) | J. Bridges (D) / K. Becker | Y. Caraveo (D)
Summary:

On the effective date of the act through December 31, 2020, all employers in the state, regardless of size, are required to provide each of their employees paid sick leave for reasons related to the COVID-19 pandemic in the amounts and for the purposes specified in the federal "Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act" in the "Families First Coronavirus Response Act".

Starting January 1, 2021, for employers with 16 or more employees, and starting January 1, 2022, for all employers, the act requires employers to provide paid sick leave to their employees, accrued at one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked, up to a maximum of 48 hours per year.

An employee begins accruing paid sick leave when the employee's employment begins, may use paid sick leave as it is accrued, and may carry forward and use in subsequent calendar years up to 48 hours of paid sick leave that is not used in the year in which it is accrued. An employer is not required to allow the employee to use more than 48 hours of paid sick leave in a year.

Employees may use accrued paid sick leave to be absent from work for the following purposes:

  • The employee has a mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition; needs a medical diagnosis, care, or treatment related to such illness, injury, or condition; or needs to obtain preventive medical care;
  • The employee needs to care for a family member who has a mental or physical illness, injury, or health condition; needs a medical diagnosis, care, or treatment related to such illness, injury, or condition; or needs to obtain preventive medical care;
  • The employee or family member has been the victim of domestic abuse, sexual assault, or harassment and needs to be absent from work for purposes related to such crime; or
  • A public official has ordered the closure of the school or place of care of the employee's child or of the employee's place of business due to a public health emergency, necessitating the employee's absence from work.

In addition to the paid sick leave accrued by an employee, the act requires an employer, regardless of size, to provide its employees an additional amount of paid sick leave during a public health emergency in an amount based on the number of hours the employee works.

The act prohibits an employer from retaliating against an employee who uses the employee's paid sick leave or otherwise exercises the employee's rights under the act. Employers are required to notify employees of their rights under the act by providing employees with a written notice of their rights and displaying a poster, developed by the division of labor standards and statistics (division) in the department of labor and employment (department), detailing employees' rights under the act.

The director of the division will implement and enforce the act and adopt rules necessary for such purposes. An employer found in violation of the act is liable to the employee for back pay and other equitable damages.

The act treats an employee's information about the employee's or a family member's health condition or domestic abuse, sexual assault, or harassment case as confidential and prohibits an employer from disclosing such information or requiring the employee to disclose such information as a condition of using paid sick leave.

The act specifies the conditions in which collective bargaining agreements result in compliance with, or exemption from, the act.

$206,566 is appropriated to the department for use by the division to implement the act, based on the assumption that the division will require an additional 2.7 FTE for such purpose.


(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 7/14/2020 Governor Signed

SB20-217 Enhance Law Enforcement Integrity 
Subject: LOCAL CONTROL/GOVERNMENTAL IMMUNITY
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Support
News: Denver Broncos players push governor on prison policy: “Football is temporary. Being a Black man in America is permanent.”
12 bills Colorado lawmakers passed in 2020 that you should know about
Sponsors: L. Garcia (D) | R. Fields (D) / L. Herod (D) | S. Gonzales-Gutierrez (D)
Summary:

Beginning July 1, 2023, the act requires all local law enforcement agencies and the Colorado state patrol to issue body-worn cameras to their officers, except for those working in jails, working as administrative or civilian staff, the executive detail of the state patrol, and those working in court rooms. A peace officer shall wear and activate a body-worn camera when responding to a call for service or during any interaction with the public initiated by the peace officer when enforcing the law or investigating possible violations of the law. A peace officer may turn off a body-worn camera to avoid recording personal information that is not case related; when working on an unrelated assignment; when there is a long break in the incident or contact that is not related to the initial incident; and during administrative, tactical, and management discussions. A peace officer does not need to wear or activate a body-worn camera if the peace officer is working undercover. The act creates inferences, presumptions, and sanctions for failing to activate or tampering with a body-worn camera. The act requires all recordings of an incident be released to the public within 21 days after the local law enforcement agency or Colorado state patrol receives a complaint of misconduct. The act allows for redaction or nonrelease of the recording to the public if there is a specified privacy interest at stake.

Beginning July 1, 2023, the act requires the division of criminal justice in the department of public safety (division) to create an annual report of the information that is reported to the division, aggregated and broken down by state or local agency that employs peace officers, along with the underlying data. Each local agency and the Colorado state patrol that employs peace officers shall report to the division:

  • All use of force by its peace officers that results in death or serious bodily injury;
  • All instances when a peace officer resigned while under investigation for violating department policy;
  • All data relating to contacts conducted by its peace officers; and
  • All data related to the use of an unannounced entry by a peace officer.

The division of criminal justice shall maintain a statewide database with data collected in a searchable format and publish the database on its website. Any state or local law enforcement agency that fails to meet its reporting requirements is subject to suspension of its funding by its appropriating authority.

If any peace officer is convicted of or pleads guilty or nolo contendere to a crime involving the unlawful use or threatened use of physical force or the failure to intervene in another officer's use of unlawful force or is found civilly liable in either case, the P.O.S.T. board shall permanently revoke the peace officer's certification. The P.O.S.T. board shall not, under any circumstances, reinstate the peace officer's certification or grant new certification to the peace officer unless exonerated by a court.

The act states that in response to a protest or demonstration, a law enforcement agency and any person acting on behalf of the law enforcement agency shall not:

  • Discharge kinetic impact projectiles and all other non- or less-lethal projectiles in a manner that targets the head, pelvis, or back;
  • Discharge kinetic impact projectiles indiscriminately into a crowd; or
  • Use chemical agents or irritants, including pepper spray and tear gas, prior to issuing an order to disperse in a sufficient manner to ensure the order is heard and repeated if necessary, followed by sufficient time and space to allow compliance with the order.

The act allows a person who has a constitutional right secured by the bill of rights of the Colorado constitution that is infringed upon by a peace officer to bring a civil action for the violation. A plaintiff who prevails in the lawsuit is entitled to reasonable attorney fees, and a defendant in an individual suit is entitled to reasonable attorney fees for defending any frivolous claims. Qualified immunity is not a defense to the civil action. The act requires a political subdivision of the state to indemnify its employees for such a claim; except that if the peace officer's employer determines the officer did not act upon a good faith and reasonable belief that the action was lawful, then the peace officer is personally liable for 5 percent of the judgment or $25,000, whichever is less, unless the judgment is uncollectible from the officer, then the officer's employer satisfies the whole judgment. A public entity does not have to indemnify a peace officer if the peace officer was convicted of a criminal violation for the conduct from which the claim arises.

The act creates a new use of force standard by limiting the use of physical force and limiting the use of deadly force when force is authorized. The act prohibits a peace officer from using a chokehold.

The act requires a peace officer to intervene when another officer is using unlawful physical force and requires the intervening officer to file a report regarding the incident. If a peace officer fails to intervene when required, the P.O.S.T. shall decertify the officer.

Under current law, if a grand jury does not bring charges against a person, the grand jury may issue a report. The act requires the grand jury to issue a report when it does not charge a person.

Beginning, January 1, 2022, the act requires the P.O.S.T. board to create and maintain a database containing information related to a peace officer's:

  • Untruthfulness;
  • Repeated failure to follow P.O.S.T. board training requirements;
  • Decertification; and
  • Termination for cause.

The act makes it unlawful for any governmental authority to engage in a pattern or practice of conduct by peace officers that deprives persons of rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the constitution or laws of the United States or the state of Colorado. Whenever the attorney general has reasonable cause to believe that a violation of this provision has occurred, the attorney general may in a civil action obtain any and all appropriate relief to eliminate the pattern or practice.

The act allows the P.O.S.T. board to revoke peace officer certification for a peace officer who has failed to complete required peace officer training after giving the officer 30 days to satisfactorily complete the training.

The act gives the P.O.S.T. board the authority to promulgate rules for enforcement of the provisions related to peace officer certification. The attorney general may bring criminal charges for violations of the provisions related to peace officer certification if violation is willful or wanton, or impose fines upon any individual officer or agency for failure to comply with the provisions related to peace officer certification.

The act requires a peace officer to have a legal basis for making a contact. After making a contact, a peace officer shall report to the peace officer's employing agency information that the agency is required to report to the division of criminal justice.

The act appropriates $617,478 from the highway users tax fund to the department of public safety for use by the Colorado state patrol. To implement this act, the patrol may use this appropriation as follows:

  • $50,288 for civilians, including an additional 1.0 FTE;
  • $7,550 for operating expenses;
  • $463,700 for information technology asset maintenance; and
  • $95,940 for the purchase of legal services, which is reappropriated to the attorney general's office.
    (Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 6/19/2020 Sent to the Governor

SB20-224 Landlord Prohibitions Tenant Citizenship Status 
Subject:
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Deliberating
News:
Sponsors: J. Gonzales (D) / S. Gonzales-Gutierrez (D)
Summary:

The "Immigrant Tenant Protection Act" (Act) is created, which prohibits a landlord from engaging in certain housing practices or related activities based on the immigration or citizenship status of a tenant. A tenant who is aggrieved by a landlord's violation of the Act may bring a civil action and seek certain remedies.

In a civil action brought under the Act, a tenant's immigration or citizenship status is not relevant, and inquiry into the tenant's status is not permitted unless:

  • The claims raised by the tenant place the tenant's immigration or citizenship status in contention; or
  • The person seeking to make the inquiry demonstrates by clear and convincing evidence that the inquiry is necessary in order to comply with federal law.
    (Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)

Status: 6/30/2020 Governor Signed

SCR20-001 Repeal Property Tax Assessment Rates 
Subject: Repeal of Gallagher Amendment - Property Tax Assessment Rates
Boulder's Interest:
Position: Actively Monitor
News:
Sponsors: J. Tate | C. Hansen (D) / D. Esgar (D) | M. Soper (R)
Summary:

Property tax in Colorado is generally equal to the actual value of property multiplied by an assessment rate, and the resulting assessed value is multiplied by each applicable local government's mill levy. The assessment rate for residential real property is established by the general assembly in accordance with a provision of the state constitution that is commonly known as the "Gallagher Amendment" and is limited by section 20 of article X of the state constitution (TABOR). Under the Gallagher Amendment, there are 2 relevant classes of property for the purposes of determining the residential assessment rate: residential property and nonresidential property. The assessment rate for most nonresidential property is fixed in the state constitution at 29%. The residential assessment rate was initially set at 21%, but the rate has been adjusted prior to each 2-year reassessment cycle to keep the percentage of aggregate statewide assessed value attributable to residential property the same as it was in the year immediately preceding the new reassessment cycle. Currently, the residential assessment rate is 7.15%.

The concurrent resolution repeals the Gallagher Amendment so that the general assembly will no longer be required to establish the residential assessment rate based on the formula expressed in the Gallagher Amendment. The resolution also repeals the reference to the residential rate of 21%, which last applied in 1986 prior to the first adjustment required by the Gallagher Amendment. Finally, the resolution repeals the 29% assessment rate that applies for all nonresidential property, excluding producing mines and lands or leaseholds producing oil or gas.


(Note: This summary applies to this concurrent resolution as adopted.)

Status: 6/23/2020 Signed by the Speaker of the House