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This Week at the Capitol

Legislation | 01/15/2016

Amy Pitlik
Director of Government Affairs

Under the Gold Dome

On January 13, the second session of the 70th General Assembly convened amid fanfare and tradition, as Colorado’s 100 legislators returned to business under the Gold Dome. Both the House and Senate welcomed new members to their chambers: Rep. Janet Buckner (D-Aurora), Rep. Cole Wist (R-Centennial), and Sen. Jack Tate (R-Centennial). While the first day of session is generally filled with speeches touting bipartisanship and cooperation, top Republicans and Democrats were fired up to promote their top priorities.

It quickly became clear that divisions remain among Colorado’s political parties, particularly when it comes to solving some of the state’s most contentious issues. While Republicans and Democrats can agree that challenges related to transportation, healthcare, and the economy should be addressed, they disagreed on the solutions.

We expect to see a number of education-related bills that seek to drive our state in the wrong direction—we cannot stand for this. Rather, Stand for Children will aim to endorse legislation that maintains strong standards and aligned assessments, promotes effective early literacy policies, and advocates for equitable funding among districts. Over the next 117 days, we will advocate for the needs of students and report on the most pressing education issues that are introduced.

Looking Forward

In the first three days of session, 117 bills were introduced, nine of which had education as a primary topic. While these bills have yet to be scheduled for a committee hearing, we will be sure to monitor their progress and report on outcomes. We expect the House and Senate Education Committees to begin hearing bills as early as next Monday.

Quick Facts

  • Senate President: Bill Cadman (R-Colorado Springs)
  • Senate Minority Leader: Lucia Guzman (D-Denver)
  • Speaker of the House: Dickey Lee Hullinghorst (D-Boulder)
  • House Minority Leader: Brian DelGrosso (R-Loveland)
  • Senate Breakdown: 18 Republicans/17 Democrats
  • House Breakdown: 34 Democrats/31 Republicans

 See you next week at the Capitol!

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