Mid-Session Update 2012


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Senator Kevin Grantham - District 2

Good evening, everyone! 

We are now half of the way through the 2nd session of the 68th General Assembly.  As you could have expected, a lot has happened so far, and so, in the spirit of the great Spaghetti Westerns, I present to you “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” of the current session.

 

THE GOOD

SB 28 is a bill that I’m sponsoring that would alter the process for handling aggravated juvenile offenders when they reach the end of their time with the juvenile system, currently set at 20 years 6 months of age.  Under current law, a juvenile is given a hearing when he reaches the age limit.  This bill would also require a psychological evaluation to determine whether or not the offender is a danger to himself or others. This is awaiting action in the Appropriations Committee.

SB 132 also one that I am sponsoring, would require the state Department of Public Health and Environment to issue decisions on air and water quality permits within 12 months instead of the federally established maximum of 18 months.  Additionally, it would establish that if the department does not advise an applicant on the application within 60 days, the application will be deemed complete, and if the department does not take action within the allotted 12 month time frame, that will be deemed final agency action for purposes of judicial review. This bill is also awaiting action in the Appropriations Committee.

HB 1158 which I am one of the prime sponsors updated Colorado’s antiquated meat rendering laws by repealing the “Inedible Meat Rendering and Processing Act of 1967” and granting the authority to specify labeling and operating requirements for the production of commercial feed to the commissioner for agriculture.  In effect, it repealed unnecessary regulation and streamlined the process. It is awaiting the governor’s signature.

SM 003 will be heard in committee on Monday, March 12th.  Memorial 003 calls upon Congress to pass the “Respect for Rights of Conscience Act of 2011.”  The administration has been pressuring religious institutions in ways that are unprecedented.  In addition to the contraception mandate at the federal level, the Democrats in the Colorado Senate passed a bill, SB 12-093, that would require hospitals to post a list of services that they do not provide for religious or moral reasons.  This is yet another attempt to pressure religious organizations and represents yet another example of government overreach.

 

THE BAD

SB 143 would set up a state government database of local businesses.  It represents an overreach on the part of government, as many people use the internet either on their home computers or on smart phones to find local business information.  Virtually no one would go to a state database in order to find information about local businesses.  Why is government interfering in something that private industry is fully capable of doing and in fact is already doing? As the Democrats have proven time and again this session, they devise solutions in search of problems.

SB 93 would require hospitals to post a list of services that they do not provide based on religious or moral grounds.  In this case, the left is busy infringing on religious liberties. Government has no business requiring this of private, religious institutions.

 

AND THE UGLY

HB 1088 would have helped “make my day better” by expanding the lawful use of force in defending property to include businesses.  Recently, a business owner in Denver was confronted as he was leaving his business.  The thieves wanted his property.  He is not being charged as it was lawful use of force in defense of his person.  But why should he also not have the right to protect his business property from thieves as well?  The Democrats killed this bill for the seventh year in a row.

HB 1064 would have prevented local governments from confiscating citizens’ firearms during an emergency.  On a vote of 3-2, the Senate State, Veterans, and Military Affairs committee postponed the bill indefinitely, aka killed the bill.  We will try again next year, but this is just another example of how the Denver-Boulder Democrat Axis is more beholden to its interest groups than the best interest of all the citizens of Colorado.

This quick update on your legislature by no means covers all of the goings-on at the State Capitol, but it does cover some of the most significant issues.  Please contact me with your concerns and opinions; our Constitutional Republic needs citizen involvement to keep it strong and undo the damage done by decades of progressivism.



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