2017 Policy Positions
HB17 - 1063 Reduce Business Personal Property Taxes
Summary: Under current law, if a business has less than $7,300 of personal property that would be listed on a single personal property schedule, then the personal property is exempt from the property tax and the business is not required to submit a schedule to the county assessor.
Sponsor: LEONARD/CROWDER/T. NEVILLE
SB17 - 001 Alleviate Fiscal Impact State Rules Small Business
Summary: The bill enacts the 'Regulatory Relief Act of 2017'. The bill includes a legislative declaration about the importance of small businesses to the Colorado economy and acknowledges the difficulty these types of businesses have in complying with state rules that are not known or understood by these businesses.
Sponsors: T. NEVILLE/P. NEVILLE
SB17 - 009 Business Personal Property Tax Exemption
Summary: There is an exemption from property tax for business personal property that would otherwise be listed on a single personal property schedule that is equal to $7,300 for the current property tax year cycle. The bill triples the exemption to $21,900 for the next 2 property tax years and adjusts it for inflation for subsequent property tax cycles.
HB17 - 1090 Advanced Industry Investment Tax Credit Extension
Summary: A qualified investor who, prior to January 1, 2018, makes an equity investment in a qualified small business from an advanced industry is allowed an income tax credit that is equal to a percentage of the investment, up to a maximum credit of $50,000. The Colorado office of economic development (office) determines the eligibility for the tax credits and issues nontransferable tax credit certificates that are used to claim the credit. The maximum amount of tax credits allowed for a calendar year is $750,000.
Sponsors: T. KRAFT-THARP | J. WILSON / J. KEFALAS | B. GARDNER
SB17 - 156 Homeowners' Association Construction Defect Lawsuit Approval Timelines
Summary: The bill states that when the governing documents of a common interest community require mediation or arbitration of a construction defect claim and the requirement is later amended or removed, mediation or arbitration is still required for a construction defect claim. These provisions are in section 3 of the bill. Section 3 also specifies that the mediation or arbitration must take place in the judicial district in which the community is located and that the arbitrator must:
HB17-1119 Payment Of Workers' Compensation Benefits
Summary: The bill creates the 'Colorado Uninsured Employer Act' to create a new mechanism for the payment of covered claims to workers who are injured while employed by employers who do not carry workers' compensation insurance. The bill creates the Colorado uninsured employer fund, which consists of penalties from employers who do not carry workers' compensation insurance.
Sponsors: T. KRAFT - THARP| L. SIAS / J. TATE | C. JAHN
HB17-1187 Change Excess State Revenues Cap Growth Factor
Summary: In 2005, voters approved Referendum C, which is a voter-approved revenue change to the TABOR fiscal year spending limit. Under the referendum, the state is permitted to retain and spend all state revenues up to the excess state revenues cap. The excess state revenues cap is adjusted annually for inflation and population changes, among other things.
Sponsors: D. THURLOW / L. CROWDER
HB17-1194 Technical Changes For P-tech Schools
Summary: The bill amends the definition of a pathways in technology early college (p-tech) high school to include a p-tech program that operates within a host school.
Sponsors: M. FOOTE / J. COOKE
HB17-1201 Science Technology Engineering Math Diploma Endorsement
Summary: The bill authorizes a school district, board of cooperative services, or institute charter high school (local education provider) to grant a high school diploma endorsement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) to students who demonstrate mastery in STEM.
Sponsors: J. COLEMAN/ R. ZENZINGER | K. PRIOLA
HB17-1229 Workers' Compensation For Mental Impairment
Summary: The bill adds the definitions 'psychologically traumatic event' and 'serious bodily injury' to the workers' compensation statutes for the purposes of clarifying a worker's right to compensation for any claim of mental impairment.
Sponsors: J. SINGER/ J. BECKER/ N. TODD/ J. COOKE
SB17 - 035 Concerning Tampering With Equipment Associated With Oil and Gas Gathering Operations
Summary: There is a current crime of tampering with equipment associated
with oil or gas gathering operations. The bill includes placing another at
risk of death or serious bodily injury as part of the crime and increases the penalty from a class 2 misdemeanor to a class 6 felony.
Sponsors: J. SONNENBERG
HB17-1242 New Transportation Infrastructure Funding Revenue
Summary: Section 15 of the bill requires a ballot question to be submitted to the voters of the state at the November 2017 statewide election that seeks approval for the state to temporarily increase the rate of the state sales and use tax for 20 years beginning in 2018. If the voters approve the temporary sales and use tax rate increase, the new revenue generated is allocated solely for transportation infrastructure funding purposes, with
specific projects to be funded required to be included in the 2017 ballot information booklet provided to the voters of the state, as follows:
Sponsors: C. DURAN/ D. MITSCH BUSH/ R. BAUMGARDNER/ K. GRANTHAM
SB17-276 Alleviate Fiscal Impact State Rules Small Business
The bill enacts the 'Regulatory Relief Act of 2017'. The bill includes a legislative declaration about the importance of small businesses to the Colorado economy and acknowledges the difficulty these types of businesses have in complying with state rules that are not known or understood by these businesses.
Sponsors: T. NEVILLE/ P. NEVILLE
HB17 - 1007 Tax Benefit Employer Collegeinvest Contribution
Summary: The starting point for determining state income tax liability is federal taxable income. This number is adjusted for additions and subtractions (deductions) that are used to determine Colorado taxable income, which amount is multiplied by the state's 4.63% income tax rate.
The bill allows an employer, whether filing as an individual or a corporation, to claim a deduction for any amount that the employer contributes to an employee's college trust account or savings account that is administered by collegeinvest. This deduction may be claimed even if the contribution has already been deducted from the employer's federal taxable income.
Sponsors: A. GARNETT/ B. GARDNER
SB17 - 152 Implement Changes Made by Amendment 71
Summary: The bill implements changes to the Colorado constitution approved by voters at the 2016 general election that make it more difficult to amend the state constitution by:
HB17-1021 Wage Theft Transparency Act
Summary: Current law requires employers to release requested information to the division of labor standards and statistics (division) in the department of labor and employment and allows the division to have access to employers' premises and all books, records, and payrolls of employers. Current law also prohibits the release of any of this information obtained by the division if the release of the information might reveal a trade secret. The bill clarifies that information obtained by the division that relates to a finding by the division of a violation of wage laws is not confidential and shall be released to the public or for use in a court proceeding, unless the director of the division makes a determination that the information includes specific information that is a trade secret.
Sponsor: J. DANIELSON
HB17-1169 Construction Defect Litigation Builder's Right To Repair
Summary: The bill clarifies that a construction professional has the right to receive notice from a prospective claimant concerning an alleged construction defect; to inspect the property; and then to elect to either repair the defect or tender an offer of settlement before the claimant can file a lawsuit seeking damages.
Sponsors: T. LEONARD / J. TATE
HB17-1200 Update Public Benefit Corporation Requirements
Summary: Authorizes a limited cooperative association to operate as a public benefit corporation;
Deletes the requirement that a public benefit corporation's entity name explicitly refer to its status as a public benefit corporation, and instead requires that before issuing shares of stock or disposing of treasury shares that are not required to be federally registered, the public benefit corporation must provide notice to the person to whom the stock is issued or who acquires the treasury shares that it is a public benefit corporation ( section 1 of the bill);
Subjects transactions to opt out of status as a public benefit corporation to the requirement to get shareholder approval ( section 2 )
Clarifies the requirements applicable to the filing of the annual public benefit report ( section 4 ); and
Clarifies that the existence of a provision of the public benefit corporation law does not of itself create an implication that a contrary or different rule of law is or would be applicable to an entity that is not a public benefit corporation ( section 5 ).
Sponsors: M. GRAY | C. WIST
SB17-186 Reduce Regulatory Burden Rules On Businesses
Summary: The 'State Administrative Procedure Act' (APA) currently defines a small business as a business with fewer than 500 employees. The bill redefines 'small business', for purposes of the APA, to mean a business entity, including its affiliates, that:
Is independently owned and operated and employs fewer than 500 employees; or
Has gross annual sales of less than $6 million.
Sponsors: J. TATE / P. LAWRENCE | T. CARVER
SB17-213 Automated Driving Motor Vehicles
Summary: The bill declares that the regulation of automated driving systems is a matter of statewide concern, and, therefore, local authorities are prohibited from regulating these systems. The use of automated driving systems is authorized if the system is capable of conforming to every state and federal law applying to driving. If not, a person testing a system is required to coordinate with the Colorado state patrol and the Colorado department of transportation.
Sponsors: D. MORENO/ O. HILL/ J. BRIDGES/ F. Winter
SB17-267 Sustainability Of Rural Colorado
Section 3 of the bill eliminates annual statutory transfers of general fund revenue to the highway users tax fund (HUTF) and the capital construction fund for state fiscal years 2017-18, 2018-19, and 2019-20. Section 1 makes statutory general fund transfers to the state public school fund in amounts equal to the amounts of the eliminated statutory transfers to the HUTF for the sole purpose of reducing, proportionally to the extent feasible, the financial impacts of inconsistent funding of the state share of district total program on rural and small rural school districts.
Section 2 requires executive branch departments to submit 2018-19 budget requests to the office of state planning and budgeting (OSPB) that are at least 2% lower than their 2017-18 budgets. The OSPB must strongly consider the budget reduction proposals made by each department when preparing the annual executive budget proposals to the general assembly and shall seek to ensure that the executive budget proposal for each department is at least 2% lower than the department's actual budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year.
Section 5 authorizes the state to execute lease-purchase agreements for eligible state facilities to generate up to $1.35 billion of net proceeds, with maximum annual lease payments of $100 million for up to 20 years. Lease payments must be paid first from any legally available money under the control of the transportation commission and next from the general fund or any other legally available source of money. $1.2 billion of the net proceeds are credited to the HUTF and allocated to the state highway fund and $150 million of the net proceeds are credited to the capital construction fund, with such amounts being reduced proportionally if the full $1.35 billion of net proceeds is not received. As specified in section 19 , the department of transportation (CDOT) may use the net proceeds only for qualified federal aid highway projects, with at least 25% of the money being used for projects that are located in counties with populations of 50,000 or less.
Section 6 creates the Colorado healthcare affordability and sustainability enterprise (enterprise) as a type 2 agency and government-owned business within the department of health care policy and financing (HCPF) for the purpose of participating in the implementation and administration of a Colorado healthcare affordability and sustainability program (program) on and after July 1, 2017, and creates a board consisting of 13 members appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate to govern the enterprise. The business purpose of the enterprise is, in exchange for the payment of a new healthcare affordability and sustainability fee (fee) by hospitals to the enterprise, to administer the program and and thereby support hospitals that provide uncompensated medical services to uninsured patients and participate in publicly funded health insurance programs by...
Sponsors: L. GUZMAN | J. SONNENBERG / J. BECKER | K. BECKER
HB17 -1049 Eliminate Property Tax Abatement Refund Interest
Summary: If property taxes are levied erroneously or illegally and a taxpayer has not protested the valuation within the time permitted by law, then the taxpayer has 2 years from the start of the property tax year to file a petition for abatement or refund. The board of county commissioners is required to abate the taxes, and the taxpayer is entitled to a refund for the incorrect amount and, in some circumstances, refund interest equal to 1% per month. The bill eliminates the refund interest related to a property tax abatement.
SB17 - 089 Allow Electric Utility Customers Install Energy Storage Equipment
Summary: The bill declares that consumers of electricity have a right to install and use electricity storage systems on their property, and this will enhance the reliability and efficiency of the electric grid, save money, and reduce the need for additional electric generation facilities.
SB17-157 Construction Defect Actions Notice Vote Approval
The bill requires that, before the executive board of a unit owners' association (HOA) in a common interest community brings suit against a developer or builder on behalf of unit owners, the board must:
Sponsors: A. WILLIAMS / J. MELTON
HB17-1305 Limits On Job Applicant Criminal History Inquiries
The bill applies to employers with 4 or more employees and prohibits those employers from:
Sponsors: M. FOOTE/ J. MELTON/ L. GUZMAN
SB17-132 Revised Uniform Law On Notarial Acts
Colorado Commission on Uniform State Laws. The bill enacts the 'Revised Uniform Law on Notarial Acts' (the 'Act'), as amended by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws in 2016. The Act responds to current transactions and practices (in particular electronic records); seeks to promote uniformity among state laws regarding notarial acts; enhances the integrity of the notarial process; and provides for the recognition of notarial acts performed in this state, in other states, under the authority of a federally recognized Indian tribe, under federal authority, and in foreign jurisdictions. The bill postpones the sunset review of the notaries law from July 1, 2018, to September 1, 2023 and relocates the notaries law from the title governing professions and occupations to the secretary of state's article.
Sponsors: B. GARDNER/ C. WIST
HB17-1311 Seller's Disclosure Estimated Future Property Tax
For sales of a newly constructed residence, the bill requires a seller to disclose an estimate of future property taxes. The estimate is based on the following factors:
Sponsors: D. MICHAELSON JENET | M. WEISSMAN
SB17-285 Downtown Development Authorities Fairness Act
The bill modifies certain statutory requirements applicable to a downtown development authority (authority) in the following respects:
Sponsors: K. GRANTHAM / P. LAWRENCE | K. BECKER
SB17 - 003 Repeal Colorado Health Benefit Exchange
Summary: In 2010, pursuant to the enactment of federal law that allowed each state to establish a health benefit exchange option through state law or opt to participate in a national exchange, the general assembly enacted the 'Colorado Health Benefit Exchange Act' (act). The act created the state exchange, a board of directors (board) to implement the exchange, and a legislative health benefits exchange implementation review committee to make recommendations to the board. The bill repeals the act, effective January 1, 2018, and allows the exchange to continue for one year for the purpose of winding up its affairs. The bill also requires the board, on the last day of the wind-up period, to transfer any unencumbered money that remains in the exchange to the state treasurer, who shall transfer the money to the general fund.
Sponsor: SMALLWOOD/P. NEVILLE
HB17-1167 Existing Businesses In Business Improvement District
A business improvement district (district) is a type of special district created within a municipality to fund certain types of improvements that will, among other things, promote the continued vitality of existing business areas within the municipality. The law currently allows a municipality to include areas in a district that do not have any existing businesses. The bill requires these areas to have existing businesses.
Sponsors: T. LEONARD/ T. NEVILLE
HB17-1256 Oil And Gas Facilities Distance From School Property
As part of the Colorado oil and gas conservation commission's (commission) authority to regulate oil and gas operations to prevent and mitigate significant adverse environmental impacts to protect public health, safety, and welfare, the commission requires oil and gas production facilities and wells to be located at least 1,000 feet from school buildings and other high occupancy buildings. The bill clarifies that the minimum 1,000-foot distance from which newly permitted oil and gas production facilities and wells must be located from any school applies to the school property line and not the school building. The bill further clarifies that it does not apply if a school commences operations near oil and gas facilities or wells that are already actively in use or permitted.
Sponsors: M. FOOTE
HB17-1307 Family And Medical Leave Insurance Program Wage Replacement
The bill creates the family and medical leave insurance (FAMLI) program in the division of family and medical leave insurance (division) in the department of labor and employment (department) to provide partial wage-replacement benefits to an eligible individual who takes leave from work to care for a new child or a family member with a serious health condition or who is unable to work due to the individual's own serious health condition
Sponsors: F. WINTER
HB17-1309 Documentary Fee To Fund Affordable Housing
Currently, when the total consideration paid by the purchaser in a real property transaction exceeds $500, the county clerk and recorder collects a one cent documentary fee for each $100 of such consideration for the recording of real estate deeds or other instruments in writing.
Section 1 of the bill raises the fee to 2 cents commencing January 1, 2018.
Section 2 specifies that 50% of the moneys generated from the imposition of the total fee must be deposited with the county treasurer at least once each month and credited by him or her in the manner prescribed by law and the remaining 50% of the moneys generated from the imposition of the fee must be transmitted by the county treasurer to the Colorado housing and finance authority (authority) at least once each month to be credited to the statewide affordable housing investment fund (fund).
Section 3 creates the fund in the authority. The bill specifies the source of moneys to be deposited into the fund and that the authority is to administer the fund.
Sponsors: D. JACKSON | F. WINTER / L. GUZMAN | D. CORAM
HB17-1314 Colorado Right To Rest Act
The bill creates the 'Colorado Right to Rest Act', which establishes basic rights for persons experiencing homelessness, including, but not limited to, the right to use and move freely in public spaces, to rest in public spaces, to eat or accept food in any public space where food is not prohibited, to occupy a legally parked vehicle, and to have a reasonable expectation of privacy of one's property. The bill does not create an obligation for a provider of services for persons experiencing homelessness to provide shelter or services when none are available
Sponsors: J. SALAZAR | J. MELTON
For a full recap of the 2016 session, please CLICK HERE.