Legislative News

Markey pledges more visibility than current treasurer

The Colorado Statesman

Former U.S. Rep. Betsy Markey is ready for another go at public office after only a short two years in Washington, D.C. But she says she isn’t using the treasurer’s race as an opportunity to jump back into the limelight.

“I’ve had a long career in both the public and the private sectors, and I’m at a point in my career where I want to do something that is meaningful for me for the next couple of years,” explained Markey.

Williams hopes to succeed fellow Republican Gessler for Secretary of State

The Colorado Statesman

Republican candidate for secretary of state Wayne Williams says the current office, led by Republican Scott Gessler, could be doing a better job working with county clerks.

Williams might be walking into a tense situation next year if he defeats Democrat Joe Neguse this November. Both Williams and Neguse are running unopposed for their respective parties’ nominations. Gessler is seeking the GOP’s nomination for governor instead of running for re-election.

Republicans Waller and Coffman both look to balance politics with serving the state

The Colorado Statesman

The two Republican candidates for attorney general both agree that there needs to be a balance between political activism and law when it comes to the top legal office.

Rep. Mark Waller of Colorado Springs and Chief Deputy Attorney General Cynthia Coffman both say that their first priority would be representing the state as its chief attorney if they were elected to the office. But they also believe that there is no hiding from the fact that there are politics at play in any statewide elected office.

Stapleton is focused on treasurer’s job — for now

The Colorado Statesman

Republican Walker Stapleton acknowledges that many in the political world believe he is positioning himself for a political future beyond that of the treasurer’s office. But the outspoken state treasurer says his only true intent currently is to seek re-election for another four years managing the state’s finances.

“I’m focused on doing my job right now, and I enjoy dealing with economic fiscal issues, and if I didn’t enjoy my job, I wouldn’t be running for re-election,” explained Stapleton.

Senate okays budget bill; now for the conference committee

The Colorado Statesman

The Senate on Friday approved its version of the budget for the upcoming fiscal year with much fewer fireworks and less drama than when the House debated the budget the week before.

The so-called “Long Bill” for Fiscal Year 2014-15 passed the Senate by a bipartisan vote of 26-8, with several Republicans opposing the spending measure because they believe more can be done to fund education especially.

Personality conflicts disrupt Appropriations

Tit for tat antics of Reps. Duran, Gerou stall bills
The Colorado Statesman

Tensions between Reps. Crisanta Duran, D-Denver, and Cheri Gerou, R-Evergreen, escalated during a House Appropriations Committee meeting Wednesday morning, stalling several bills that require funding just as Senate discussions over the budget kicked into high gear.

The multiple divisive exchanges between Gerou and Duran sparked calls by Duran for an ethics investigation on Gerou, though that threat had not mounted as of press time.

Possible speed bumps ahead for Uber unless bill is amended

The Colorado Statesman

After hours of testimony, a House committee on Wednesday evening laid over a measure that would place ride-sharing services like Lyft and UberX under light regulation, leaving the final destination of the bill uncertain.

Senate Bill 125 did not come to a screeching halt — the Transportation and Energy Committee has scheduled the bill for a vote next Wednesday. The hearing this week served to simply take witness testimony.

More money for the budget, more fights at legislature

The Colorado Statesman

The Senate this week will take up a $23 billion budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year after the House last week passed a largely partisan spending plan that resulted in plenty of fights over how to fund the state.

The overall budget proposal represents a $1.1 billion increase over the current budget, and marks the most money lawmakers have had to spend in nearly a decade.

SB 125 could face bumpy ride in House

The Colorado Statesman

A measure that would place ride-sharing services like Lyft and UberX under light regulation could face a bumpy ride when it lands in the House this upcoming week.

The bipartisan Senate Bill 125, sponsored in the House by Reps. Dan Pabon, D-Denver, and Libby Szabo, R-Arvada, has been scheduled for Wednesday in the House Transportation and Energy Committee in the Old Supreme Court Chambers.

The measure would empower the Public Utilities Commission to regulate so-called “Transportation Networking Companies” by:

• Requiring an insurance policy that applies to the rider and driver;

New legislative take on old telecommunications laws

Bipartisan package draws ire of AARP
The Colorado Statesman

A package of bills that would update the state’s decades-old telecommunications laws passed its first test on Tuesday, making it through a House committee with relative ease.

The House Business, Labor, Economic and Workforce Development committee backed the five bills after about five hours of debate, despite opposition from senior citizens who believe that the modernization would lead to an elimination of traditional phone service and a spike in rates.

The bipartisan package of bills includes: