2013 Weekly General Report

 April 28, 2013

The last few weeks of the session are traditionally a pressure cooker under the dome as the 120 deadline for adjournment looms and the House and Senate Calendars look impossibly long to clear before the General Assembly must go home.  There has been talk of a special session to complete unfinished business but it is widely believed that the Governor opposes such an idea and either he or 2/3 vote of the members of each House is required to call a special session.  Republican legislators have no interest whatever in coming back before January. 

The longest legislative debates this week were over HB 1136, the expansion of remedies for discrimination in employment, in the Senate and SB 252, the increase in renewable energy standards for REAs, in the House.  These two bills effectively absorbed most of the day and evening and part of the night on Thursday as Republicans fought to make a record of the Democratic majority’s indifference to the concerns of business and of rural Colorado.  HB 1136 by Representative Levy has been lavishly discussed and debated over the last three months with little movement to satisfy the business community that opposes it.  By contrast, SB 252 was deliberately introduced late in the session to make informed legislative debate, public input and compromise difficult if not impossible to achieve.  And successfully.  These two bills reflect the old political adage that the majority party is at the Capitol to make law while the minority party is there to make a quorum.

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