In this article, I would like to take a look back at some of the legislation passed during our previous state government session. The legislature met for 120 days and passed 598 bills involving $32 billion of your money. These bills encompassed parental authority over the family, administration of our schools (don’t we elect local school boards to do that?), the economy, and specific industries such as power generation. What did they accomplish?
HB-1022 – Deadly force against an intruder at a business. This bill would have extended the same protections you have for your home to your business, but it lost.
HB-1049 – Conceal carry at schools. This bill also lost, although you can be assured the bad guys won’t care and will do it anyway. We just won’t have any good guys prepared to deal with the situation.
HB-1111 – Require training for Colorado Civil Rights Commissioners. This bill lost even though our Civil Rights Commissioners have been chastised by the Supreme Court for their slanted view of jurisdictional issues.
HB-1156 – Require proof of citizenship to vote. This bill lost. Do we not care who votes? There used to be an incentive to learn our history, both good and bad, and declare allegiance to our country before a foreigner was allowed to participate in it.
HB-1032 – Sex education for public schools. Passed. Fortunately, there is a small loophole allowing local districts to bow out as long as they also refuse to accept funding. This is an issue that should be decided much closer to home, where we elect our neighbors to determine how our schools are run.
HB-1056 – Replace Columbus Day holiday with an election day holiday. Failed. Well, that’s a good thing, I suppose. I serve as an election judge and can tell you well over 90 percent of the voting is now done by mail. What were these legislators thinking to even propose a holiday so people would have time to vote?
HB-1120 – Mental health treatment without parental consent for 12-year-olds. Passed. Your 12 year old can’t get a broken arm set and be given pain killer for the injury without your consent, but a practitioner you don’t know, didn’t choose, and may not share your family values can now treat your child’s mental illness.
HB-1124 – Make Colorado a sanctuary state. Passed. I’m not aware of any other country, including the countries these immigrants are leaving, that allows unfettered immigration and then grants freebies to these people once they break the law to get here.
We have had an immigration system in place for over 200 years that has served us well and allowed immigrants to come in using a controlled environment to avoid overwhelming our resources. If we remove all controls, where will the money come from to feed and house these people at an acceptable standard and provide basic life-saving medical care?
HB-1257 – Eliminate Taxpayers Bill Of Rights spending limits. Passed the legislature and is now on your ballot for a final decision from you, the taxpayer. At least this one was referred to those impacted by it. Despite the language (“without raising taxes”) it does keep more of your money in the state budget. It requires an annual “audit,” but as has been noted, the state can used this money for roads, schools, whatever; but outside of that audit it can reduce what it used to provide for those items in the general fund.
HB-1317 – End the senior property tax exemption. Failed. Watch out, you folks now living on limited incomes. They are coming for your money despite your years of hard work.
SB-012 – Ban cell phones and cameras while driving. Failed. I guess we didn’t get enough first responders to testify on this one as to the effects of distracted driving.
SB-181 – Increase oil and gas industry regulations. Passed. Have they forgotten that emissions now are a fraction of what they used to be from these industries back in the 80s? Also, for those who think wind energy is the grand solution, some of the first wind towers have now exceeded their life expectancy.
The industry is finding it can cost close to $500,000 to dismantle, remove and discard each tower. Some of them are actually being knocked down and then just left in the field. As I’ve said before, I’m all for moving forward with new technology, but we have to do so at a reasonable pace and factor in all the costs and consequences.
SB-235 – Automatic voter registration for all Medicaid recipients. Passed. Well, go back to the discussion about providing benefits for illegal immigrants. Also, voter registration used to require a positive action on the part of the prospective voter. Now people are being registered without their being fully aware of it.
Will this lead to fraud, as someone else casts their vote for them? Time will tell, but what was wrong with the previous system of requiring a person to sign a form for this privilege?
This is a short summary of bills that were considered in the past legislative session.
Where will next year’s session take us? Remember, when you cast your vote in 2020 you are not just voting for a name, you are voting for an ideology. Do you want a larger government spending more of your dollars and taking control of more of your life issues, or do you want a smaller government, leaving you more of your hard-earned money to spend as you see fit, and giving you more control over your life and that of your family?