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Marianne GoodlandMarianne GoodlandMarch 15, 20186min341
The House Judiciary Committee this week signed off on a bill to reauthorize the state’s civil rights agency for another nine years, but chances the bill gets through the General Assembly in its current form are slim. And chances that the agency’s funding will be included the annual state budget when it is introduced on […]

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Dan NjegomirDan NjegomirJanuary 11, 20183min1214

Sure, there were all the opening-day rituals under the Dome on Wednesday — speeches, promises of bipartisanship and warm greetings among almost all of the 100 members, who insisted they were happy to see one another again. But then there’s the real business of the General Assembly: making laws (well, and killing legislation; plenty of that, too).

And the House Democratic majority got down to business the same day, releasing its caucus’s first five bills — enunciating some of their top priorities for the 2018 session. An announcement from the Dems’ press shop boiled it down to, “work-life balance, rural education, the opioid epidemic and college education credits.”

Or, as House Speaker Crisanta Duran put it:

“A major goal this session is to create more opportunities for Coloradans to turn their hard work into economic security. …These bills are part of a much larger agenda to preserve and enhance our Colorado way of life.”

Here’s the legislation — a lot of it with bipartisan sponsorship — as read across the House clerk’s desk:

  • HB18-1001/Reps. Faith Winter, D-Westminster, and Matt Gray, D-Broomfield – Creates an insurance programs that allows more Coloradans to take paid time off to care for a sick parent or loved one without having to quit their jobs, or risk being fired.
  • HB18-1002/Reps. Millie Hamner, D-Dillon, and Bob Rankin, R-Carbondale – Enables students in the final year of a teacher preparation program to receive stipends for teaching in rural school districts with teacher shortages. The first of several bills to address the rural teacher shortage.
  • HB18-1003/Rep. Brittany Pettersen, D-Lakewood – Authorizes grants for education, screening, intervention and prevention services to address the opioid epidemic, which is now the leading cause of accidental death among Coloradans 55 years of age and under. Part of a package of opioids bills from a bipartisan interim committee being brought by Reps. Pettersen, Chris Kennedy, D-Lakewood, and Jonathan Singer, D-Longmont.
  • HB18-1004/Rep. James Coleman, D-Denver – Extends a tax credit for donations to child care facilities to help increase the availability of quality child care providers in Colorado.
  • HB18-1005/Reps. Brittany Pettersen, D-Lakewood, and Jon Becker, R-Fort Morgan – Expands notification to students and their parents about concurrent enrollment opportunities, so high school students can get a jump on their college educations.

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Marianne GoodlandMarianne GoodlandNovember 15, 20178min579
The 2017-18 spending spree that Colorado lawmakers and the governor went on, courtesy of a $56.5 million boost in marijuana tax revenues, won’t be repeated in 2018-19, according to an analysis of those revenues presented this week to the Joint Budget Committee. That led some JBC members to warn fellow lawmakers and the governor that […]

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Marianne GoodlandMarianne GoodlandSeptember 28, 20179min477

A legislative committee looking at the school finance act Wednesday announced they’ve picked the company that will help take the deep dive into how the state pays for public schools. Cross and Joftus, based in Maryland, will take on the heavy lifting over the next year to figure out the solutions to Colorado’s strange mix of finance and school funding policy. The company will handle data and analysis, research, and taking input from a variety of stakeholders. The General Assembly set aside $383,000 in 2017-18 and 2018-19 to pay for the consultant as well as other expenses.


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Joey BunchJoey BunchAugust 25, 20173min928

The recently retired principal of Will Rogers Elementary School has a new assignment: running for the state legislature.

Terry Martinez tells Colorado Politics is seeking the District 18 seat in Colorado Springs that will be vacated by Rep. Pete Lee, a Democrat who is term-limited.

The District 18 race includes fellow Democrat Graham Anderson and Republicans Jillian Likness and Donald Howbert, according to the Secretary of State’s Office.

Lee was first elected to the House in 2010 and was re-elected to his final term last November with 53 percent over Republican Cameron Forth and Libertarian Norman Dawson.

“It would be an honor to serve the people of Colorado Springs and Manitou Springs in the state House” Martinez said in a statement. “We need leaders in the legislature with the passion and experience to help our communities overcome challenges and seek out new opportunities.

“My career as a teacher, principal and community leader allowed me to work with people to create real results, and I want to bring that skill to the state House of Representatives.”

A lifelong resident of Colorado Springs, Martinez’s education career includes Will Rogers and West Side schools. He ran the Valley Swim Team for many years, as well has his community involvement through New Life Downtown church.

His campaign provided an endorsement from a legislator who knows the legislative value of a background in education.

“Terry Martinez is the right choice for El Paso County,” state Rep. Millie Hamner, D-Dillon, a former school superintendent who sits on the legislature’s Joint Budget Committee.

“We need more representatives with the skills Terry has developed through his years as a teacher and principal to fight for educational opportunities for Colorado’s youth and to bring thoughtful leadership experience to the state House. I am proud to endorse his candidacy.”

Martinez lives in Colorado Springs with his wife, Jennifer, and has three adult daughters.