There is a mixed bag of bills coming up early in the week I have a few on third reading that I would expect will pass with little discussion.
One, a transparency bill, requires that a referral agency make disclosures to a prospective resident of an assisted living facility if they receive compensation for making the recommendation. Nothing wrong with being compensated for providing a service, but everyone needs to know who is paying whom.
The second is a prohibition on discrimination against a living organ donor in certain insurance policies. Given the battery of tests you have to take to become a living organ donor, they are probably some of the healthiest people around, and this bill states that unless there is actuarial evidence to the contrary, the donor cannot be discriminated against solely on the basis of the donation.
I will be supporting a bill that deals with waste tire management. There are over six million tires on the road in Colorado, and the second largest waste tire disposal site in Colorado is right here in Senate District 2, with tens of millions of tires pushed into gullies and pits. Also, the district is home to one of the primary users of waste tires, so it’s an issue of local importance.
The good news is the bill requires that for every new waste tire that comes into the disposal site, they are required to send five out, typically in the form of chipped rubber to be used for fuel to generate cement. There are other uses as well, but rubberized roads have not exactly become commonplace, and playgrounds only need to be about so deep in granulated rubber.
The bad news is the fee goes from 55 cents per new tire that you are now paying to $2 per tire. It does sunset in five years, which should give us time to make a sizeable dent in those tire piles. When you pay that additional $1.45 the next time you buy a tire, it’s OK to blame me, but also know this is a user-funded solution.
More controversial than an extra buck forty-five is the Family Leave Act. This is funded through a payroll deduction, with the employee paying 60 percent of the fee and the employer paying the other 40 percent.
The fee versus tax controversy is handled by using the definition of an enterprise in the Taxpayers Bill of Rights, and creating a program that fits within that definition. There are other details that are particularly troubling to small businesses, but what is most concerning to me is the numbers they use to compute the costs are among the lowest in the country.
Which leads me to believe the true cost to fund this program as promised could easily double the almost one-billion-dollar fiscal note that is currently projected.
I welcome your thoughts and comments on the happenings here at the Capital. Lots of ways to stay in touch. Office phone 303-866-4877, Mobile phone 719-351-2121, email SenatorHisey@gmail.com, Twitter @SenDennisHisey and Facebook Senator Dennis Hisey.