2020 LPCO Legislative Watch List current as of 2/16/20
To voice support or opposition for a bill, contact committee members as well as your own representatives. URL to committee contact information can be found with each bill below as well as at www.leg.colorado.gov.
OPPOSE HB20-1162 Prohibit food establishments use of Polystyrene
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. Energy & Environment committee: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/energy-environment/2020-regular-session
OPPOSE HB20-1163 Management Of Single-use Products
The bill prohibits stores and retail food establishments, on and after July 1, 2021, from providing single-use plastic carryout bags, single-use plastic stirrers, single-use plastic straws, and expanded polystyrene food service products (collectively “single-use products”) to customers at the point of sale. The executive director of the department of public health and environment is authorized to enforce the prohibition. The prohibition does not apply to inventory purchased before July 1, 2021, and used on or before December 31, 2021. A store or retail food establishment, on or after July 1, 2021, may furnish recyclable paper carryout bags to a customer at a charge of at least 10 cents per customer, which amount the store or establishment may retain in full, unless a local government’s ordinance or resolution prohibits the store or establishment from retaining the full charge. A local government, on or after July 1, 2021, is preempted from enacting an ordinance, resolution, rule, or charter provision that is less stringent than the statewide prohibition.
House Energy & Environment committee: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/energy-environment/2020-regular-session
Upcoming action: Committee hearing MONDAY FEB 24, 1:30pm, House Comm Room 107 *hearing is for both HB20-1162 + 1163
OPPOSE SB20-065 Limit Mobile Electronic Devices While Driving
The bill limits the use of a mobile electronic device while driving to adult drivers who use the mobile electronic device through a hands-free accessory. The bill establishes penalties of $50 and 2 points for a first violation, $100 and 2 points for a second violation, $200 and 4 points for a third or subsequent violation, and $300 and 4 points if the violation involves text messaging.
Upcoming Action: Passed Senate & Energy committee unanimously, referred to appropriations, not yet scheduled for a hearing.
OPPOSE HB20-1152 Penalty For Weapons Possession Offenses
The bill requires a court to sentence an adult or a juvenile who is convicted as an adult who commits the felony offenses of possession of a weapon by a previous offender or unlawfully carrying a weapon on school grounds to the department of corrections for a term of incarceration. The bill clarifies that a sentence for a second or subsequent offense for possession of a weapon by a previous offender, when the weapon involved is a dangerous weapon or when the prior conviction or adjudication was for burglary, arson, or any felony involving the use of force or the use of a deadly weapon, runs consecutively with any prior sentences being served by the offender.
House Judiciary committee: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/judiciary/2020-regular-session-0
Upcoming Action: Committee hearing THURSDAY, MAR 5, 1:30pm, House Comm Room 112
OPPOSE HB20-1001 Nicotine Product Regulation
Sections 1 through 8 of the bill raise the minimum age of a person to whom cigarettes, tobacco products, and nicotine products (products) may be sold from 18 years of age to 21 years of age. Under current law, if a minor purchases or attempts to purchase any one of the products, the minor may be convicted of a class 2 petty offense subject to a $100 fine. In addition to raising the minimum age from 18 years of age to 21 years of age, section 1 also repeals the criminal penalty for purchasing or attempting to purchase the products as a minor.
Section 7 also prohibits a retailer from permitting a person under 18 years of age to sell or participate in the sale of products.
Section 8 also increases the minimum number of compliance checks required of each retail location at which the products are sold to 2 per year or at least the minimum number annually required by federal regulation, whichever number is greater.
Section 9 requires every retailer of the products in the state, on and after July 1, 2021, to be licensed. The liquor enforcement division (division) of the department of revenue is charged with licensing retailers and coordinating with local authorities on retail location compliance checks and investigations of complaints about retailers.
Section 10 prohibits: New retail locations at which products are sold from being located within 500 feet of a school; retail locations that sell electronic smoking device products from advertising those products in a manner that is visible from outside the retail location; and delivery of products directly to consumers.
Section 11 governs enforcement of the licensing requirements.
Section 12 adjusts the fine amounts for violating the prohibition against selling products to minors from a maximum fine for a fifth or subsequent violation within 24 months of $1,000 to $15,000 to a maximum fine for a fourth or subsequent violation in 36 months of $1,000 to $15,000. Additionally, the division must prohibit a retailer who commits a second or subsequent violation within 36 months from selling products at the retail location where the violation occurred for a specified period of time, starting with at least 7 days for a second violation within 36 months, to at least 30 days for a third violation within 36 months, and finally for up to 3 years for a fourth or subsequent violation within 36 months.
Additionally, section 12 establishes fines for selling or offering to sell products without a valid state license on or after July 1, 2021, with the amount of fines ranging from $1,000 for a first violation to $3,000 for a third or subsequent violation. If a person sells or offers to sell products without a valid state license at least 3 times in a 36-month period, the person is not eligible to apply for a state license for 3 years thereafter.
Section 12 also adjusts the period within which a subsequent violation of the prohibition against selling products from a vending machine or the requirement to display a warning at the retail location is subject to an increased fee from 24 months to 36 months. Further, section 12 also applies the same fine structure as exists for selling products from a vending machine or failing to display the requisite warning to a violation of the prohibition against allowing a person under 18 years of age to sell or participate in the sale of products.
Sections 13 through 17 make conforming amendments.
Upcoming Action: Passed House Health & Insurance committee with a 9-1 vote (Rep Mark Baisley voted NO), referred to House Finance committee, not yet scheduled for a hearing.
OPPOSE SB20-163 School Entry Immunization
The bill codifies a definition of “nonmedical exemption” to mean an immunization exemption based upon a religious belief whose teachings are opposed to immunizations or a personal belief that is opposed to immunizations.
Under current law, each student must submit to a school, as defined in section 25-4-901, either a certificate of immunization, a certificate of medical exemption, or a statement of nonmedical exemption for an immunization for a religious or personal belief. The bill requires the department of public health and environment (department) to develop standardized forms and a submission process for persons who want to claim a nonmedical exemption for an immunization for a religious or personal belief. A person who wants to claim a nonmedical exemption for an immunization for a religious or personal belief can do so by submitting to the school either: • A certificate of completion of the online education module; or • A certificate of nonmedical exemption.
The bill requires the department to annually evaluate the state’s immunization practices, including an examination of best practices and guidelines recommended by the advisory committee on immunization practices. The state board of health may update the state’s immunization practices pursuant to the annual evaluation.
The bill creates a vaccine-protected children standard, whereby the immunization rate goal for every school is 95% of the student population to be vaccinated.
The bill requires the department to amend an immunization document it currently publishes annually to include information about the vaccine-protected children standard. Every school shall publish its immunization rate and exemption rate on the document and annually distribute it to the parents, legal guardians, and students of the school. The bill requires, as applicable, a practitioner who is a licensed physician, physician assistant, advanced practice nurse, or person authorized pursuant to title 12 to administer immunizations within their scope of practice to students and to submit immunization, medical, or nonmedical exemption data to the immunization tracking system. The practitioner is not subject to a regulatory sanction for noncompliance.
Senate Health & Human Services Committee: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/health-human-services/2020-regular-session
Upcoming Action: Committee hearing WEDNESDAY, FEB 19, upon adjournment (approx. 10am), Old Supreme Court
SUPPORT HB20-1080 Remove Residency Requirement For Marijuana License
Under current law all managers and employees of a medical marijuana business or a retail marijuana business with day-to-day operational control must be Colorado residents when they apply for licensure. The bill repeals this residency requirement.
Senate Business, Labor & Technology committee: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/business-labor-technology/2020-regular-session
Upcoming Action: Passed House, not yet scheduled for a Senate committee hearing
SUPPORT SB20-100 Repeal The Death Penalty
The bill repeals the death penalty in Colorado for offenses charged on or after July 1, 2020, and makes conforming amendments.
House Judiciary committee: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/judiciary/2020-regular-session-0
Upcoming Action: Passed senate; House Judiciary Committee Hearing TUES FEB 18, 1:30pm, Old State Library
SUPPORT HB20-1147 Reasonable Independence For Children In Activities
Under current law, a child is neglected or dependent if the child’s environment is injurious to the child’s welfare. The bill clarifies that the child’s environment is injurious to the child’s welfare because the child’s parent has placed the child in or failed to remove the child from a situation that a reasonable person would realize requires judgment or actions beyond the child’s level of maturity, physical condition, or mental ability and that results in bodily injury or a substantial risk of immediate and grave harm as a result of a blatant disregard of parent or caretaker responsibilities.
A child is not neglected or dependent if a child who is of sufficient maturity, physical condition, and mental ability is left by the child’s parent, guardian, or legal custodian, under conditions that are reasonably deemed safe and secure sufficient to avoid substantial risk of physical harm, to engage in independent activities specified in the bill.
The bill amends the criminal code to reflect that a person does not commit child abuse if the person is exercising reasonable judgment in allowing a child to engage in independent activities as described in language added to the dependency or neglect statute in the bill.
Upcoming Action: Passed House Judiciary committee unanimously, Scheduled for 2nd Reading in House Chamber WEDNESDAY, FEB 19
SUPPORT HB20-1029 Allow County Officers To Accept Lower Salary
The annual salary of an elected county officer (officer) is currently specified in statute. The bill expressly allows an officer to make an election to receive less than the amount specified in law. The officer may subsequently elect to increase or decrease his or her salary annually as long as it does not exceed the amount allowed in statute.
Senate Local Government committee: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/local-government/2020-regular-session
Upcoming Action: Passed House; not yet scheduled for Senate committee hearing
SUPPORT HB20-1282 Radio Communications Policies Of Gov Entities
The bill requires each entity of the state government; each entity of the government of each city, county, and city and county; and special districts, school districts, and institutions of higher education (governmental entity) that encrypts all of its radio communications to enact an encryption policy.
An encryption policy must include access to unencrypted radio communications by members of the media and standards that prevent the governmental entity from imposing unreasonable and burdensome limitations on access to radio communications. When enacting an encryption policy, a governmental entity must consider including in the policy access to unencrypted radio communications for the general public through alternative means, such as delayed online transmission. Prior to enacting an encryption policy, a governmental entity must seek input from members of the Colorado media and the general public.
House Transportation & Local Government committee: http://leg.colorado.gov/committees/transportation-local-government/2020-regular-session
Upcoming Action: Committee hearing WEDNESDAY MAR 4, 1:30pm, House Comm Room 107
SUPPORT HB20-1271 Repeal Red Flag And Amend 72-hour Hold
The bill repeals the laws relating to extreme risk protection orders. Under current law, a person can be held on an involuntary 72-hour mental health hold if the person appears to be an imminent danger to others or to himself or herself. The bill changes the standard from imminent danger to extreme risk and defines extreme risk as a credible and exigent threat of danger to themselves or others through actionable threats of violence or death as result of a current mental health state.
House Judiciary committee, not yet scheduled for a hearing: http://leg.colorado.gov/committees/judiciary/2020-regular-session-0
SUPPORT HB20-1287 Colorado Rights Act
The bill allows a person who has a right, privilege, or immunity secured by the Colorado constitution that is infringed upon to bring a civil action for the violation. The attorney general can also bring an action under the same circumstances. 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 and a defendant’s good faith but erroneous belief in the lawfulness of his or her conduct are not defenses to the civil action. The civil action has a two-year statute of limitations. The bill requires a public entity to indemnify its public employees in a claim unless the employee is convicted of a crime related to the claim.
House Judiciary committee, not yet scheduled for a hearing: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/judiciary/2020-regular-session-0
SUPPORT HB20-1297 Immunization Status And Child Abuse Neglect
The bill adds language to Colorado’s children’s code to clarify that a child’s immunization status or a parent’s or legal guardian’s decision to delay or decline one or more immunizations for his or her child does not alone constitute child abuse or neglect.
House Public Health Care & Human Services, not yet scheduled for a hearing: https://leg.colorado.gov/committees/public-health-care-human-services/2020-regular-session
DEAD BILLS FROM LPCO WATCH LIST
OPPOSE: SB20-109 Short-term Rentals Property Tax
For purposes of the property tax, the bill classifies an improvement that is used to provide short-term stays, which is overnight lodging for less than 30 consecutive days in exchange for a monetary payment. A building or a portion of a building that is designed and used as a residency by a person, a family, or families and that is leased or available to be leased for short-term stays is a residential improvement and, therefore, it is classified as residential property. A short-term rental unit is excluded from the definition of residential improvements and, therefore, it is classified as nonresidential property. A short-term rental unit is defined to mean a building or a portion of a building that is designed for use predominantly as a place of residency by a person, a family, or families, but that is leased or available to be leased for short-term stays during the property tax year and is occupied by the owner for less than 30 days in a year. DEAD: Senate Finance committee voted to postpone indefinitely on 2/11/2020
OPPOSE: HB20-1272 Colorado Natural Marriage And Adoption Act
The bill permits a clerk to issue a license to marry and a marriage certificate only upon satisfactory proof that the marriage will be between one man and one woman, regardless of judicial decisions to the contrary. The bill authorizes a court, county department, or licensed child placement agency to approve an adoptive placement of a child only with prospective parents whose marriage consists of one man and one woman, or whose civil union, if it were considered a marriage, is only between one man and one woman, regardless of any judicial decisions to the contrary, and to allow stepparent adoptions only to a parent who is in a marriage or civil union that is between one man and one woman. DEAD: House State, Veterans & Military Affairs committee voted to postpone indefinitely on 2/13/2020
OPPOSE: SB20-154 Bring Own Wine Into Restaurants
The bill requires an establishment that holds a hotel and restaurant license to sell alcohol beverages for consumption on the premises to allow a customer of the licensee who is at least 21 years of age to bring one container containing up to 750 milliliters of vinous liquor into the licensed premises where meals are actually and regularly served for the on-premises consumption by the costumer or the customer and the customer’s companions who are also at least 21 years of age during a meal that the customer, and the companions of the customer, if any, have ordered from the licensee, unless: • The customer has brought a container of vinous liquor into the licensed premises in the previous 24 hours; • The licensee or any agent of the licensee reasonably believes that the customer is under the influence of alcohol or drugs; • The licensee has ceased serving meals for the day or is preparing to cease serving meals for the day; or • The licensee reasonably believes that the customer has committed any of certain unlawful acts on the licensed premises. • The bill allows a customer to reseal and remove from the licensed premises an opened container of partially consumed vinous liquor that the customer brought into the licensed premises. DEAD: Senate Business, Labor & Technology committee vote unanimously to postpone indefinitely on 2/12/2020
OPPOSE: HB20-1121 Retaliation Against An Elected Official
Under current law, there is a crime of retaliation against a judge if an individual makes a credible threat or commits an act of harassment or an act of harm or injury upon a person or property as retaliation or retribution against a judge. The crime is a class 4 felony. The bill adds elected officials and their families to the crime. DEAD: This sponsors of this bill pulled it citing First Amendment concerns but they made it clear it will be revised and come back if not this session, next session.
SUPPORT: HB20-1063 Fundamental Family Rights In Colorado
The bill defines parental rights as the right to direct the upbringing, education, and care of a parent’s child and establishes parental rights as a fundamental right in Colorado that is subject to strict scrutiny.
SUPPORT: HB20-1144 Parent’s Bill Of Rights
The bill establishes a parent’s bill of rights that sets forth specific parental rights related to directing the upbringing, education, and health care of a minor child.
SUPPORT: HB20-1033 Live And Let Live Act
The bill establishes the “Live and Let Live Act” in Colorado. DEAD: House State, Veterans & Military Affairs committee voted to postpone indefinitely on 2/13/2020 (includes 1063, 1144, 1033)