Gov. John Hickenlooper soon could ink legislation to help combine overlapping services — like schools, restaurants, parks and shops— that are provided at military bases and by the local communities that host them. House Bill 1054, which was OK’d unanimously by the state Senate, was touted today in a press release by the Senate Democrats as “creating a closer community with Colorado civilians and our men and women in uniform.” HB 1054 was previously approved overwhelmingly in the House.
The bipartisan measure is sponsored by Democratic Sen. Nancy Todd of Aurora in the upper chamber and was introduced earlier in the House by Republican Reps. Terri Carver and Dan Nordberg of Colorado Springs. Both communities are home to military installations — Buckley Air Force Base in Aurora and the Army’s Fort Carson, the U.S. Air Force Academy and Peterson Air Force Base, among others, in Colorado Springs.
The measure’s focus on eliminating costly duplication and fostering closer links between the installations and their surrounding communities is intended to “cut costs and increase efficiencies in providing governmental services,” according to the bill’s official summary. The bill “directs the department of local affairs to support cooperative intergovernmental agreements between military installations and local governments.”
In a statement issued by the Senate Democratic press office, Todd said:
“We need to support and make sure our service members feel welcomed to our community. With all the responsibilities our men and women in uniform face protecting our country, we need to make sure we provide a supportive environment. And when they become veterans, hopefully they will choose to continue to call their host community home.”