Current News

Hickenlooper vetoes high-cost lending bill

The Colorado Statesman

A bill that would have altered the interest rate structure on high risk personal loans died on Gov. John Hickenlooper’s desk on Thursday.
The governor vetoed House Bill 1390 after consumer groups blasted the bill as being unfair to the poor and one that would have resulted in higher-cost loans.

Supervised loans provide borrowing options for those who may not qualify for other loans. Because they are considered high risk, the loans tend to come with higher interest rates than other lending options.

Pot tax issue heads to the ballot — again

The Colorado Statesman

There’s a line in the Grateful Dead’s “Born Cross-Eyed” that Colorado voters can relate to when it comes to votes on marijuana taxes:
“Seems like I’ve been here before.”

Voters have already given the state the OK to keep taxes collected from the sale of recreational marijuana. But a glitch in state law requires the issue to go before voters again.

Gov. John Hickenlooper on Thursday signed a law to create a November ballot measure that deals with the pot tax collection issue.

Hickenlooper vetoes red-light camera bills

The Colorado Statesman

Gov. John Hickenlooper this week vetoed bills that sought to curb the use of red-light cameras and photo radar systems across the state.

But bill sponsors vowed to continue efforts to rein in the use of automated vehicle identification systems that they believe Colorado voters would reject if given the opportunity.

House Bill 1098 would have required voter approval for cities to use the technology. Senate Bill 276 served as an outright ban of the systems.

Hickenlooper wasn't fond of either effort, saying through a June 3 press statement that the bills “go too far.”

New law allows lawsuits against schools

The Colorado Statesman

Claire Davis – an Arapahoe High School student who was shot to death by a classmate two years ago – now has a law named after her.

The “Claire Davis School Act” will allow lawsuits against school districts when death or serious injury results from preventable acts of campus violence. Schools had previously been immune from such litigation.

The Davis family contends that the school had known about prior threats the shooter, Karl Pierson, had made against a teacher and should have taken those threats more seriously.

Pierson shot Davis before turning the gun on himself.

New Colorado Springs Mayor Suthers has no regrets on passing up Senate race

The Colorado Statesman

John Suthers was sworn in Tuesday as mayor of Colorado Springs, a turn of events that still has some state politicos scratching their heads.

The former two-term attorney general had been on the short list of potential Republican challengers to Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet, a list that became even shorter Monday with Republican Rep. Mike Coffman’s decision not to seek the nomination.

Families praise felony DUI law, but pain still resides

The Colorado Statesman

For Alma Sanchez of Denver, it's the everyday things, like when she enjoys a good meal, when memories of her late cousin, Juan Carlos Dominguez-Palomino, are stirred.

“Juan was a voracious eater,” she said. “He enjoyed eating Mexican food like no other. He was big and tall, so even when I have a meal, it brings back memories of him.

“They should be happy memories, but you feel sadness.”

Meanwhile, Frank Martinez of Loveland still grieves the loss of his 37-year-old nephew, Gilbert Martinez, and the late father's two young boys, who were killed in January.

Colorado officials toast Taiwan economic office's move from Kansas City to Denver

The Colorado Statesman

Nothing says “welcome to Colorado” like Denver Broncos swag, as far as state Rep. Kathleen Conti is concerned.

She presented a Peyton Manning NFL jersey to Jack J.C. Yang, director general of the Taiwan Economic and Cultural Office, at Friday’s reception at the Brown Palace to celebrate TECO’s relocation from Kansas City to Denver.

Such Broncos wear is necessary “in order for you truly to understand what it is to be a Coloradan and a Denver citizen,” quipped the Republican Conti.

Thunder, lightning, rumors and strike talk at JCEA rally

The Colorado Statesman

On the final Friday afternoon of the school year last week, the Jefferson County Education Association (JCEA) scheduled a “Rally to Take Back our Schools” in Clement Park. Scheduled for 4 p.m., hundreds were still searching for parking spaces as the skies opened at 4:15 and the crowd sought shelter beneath the picnic pavilions that surround the amphitheater. Sheets of rain, driven by gusts of wind drenched those along the periphery of the shelters. Umbrellas had to be clenched in both hands. After 30 minutes, the rain eased and a crowd of perhaps a thousand began to migrate towards the stage.

UPDATED: Colleagues remember 'Old Man Buckner'

The Colorado Statesman

He made a career out of teaching kids the ABCs, but Rep. John Buckner liked to refer to himself as OMB.

“He always talked about being older than us and he would call himself 'OMB' for 'Old Man Buckner,” said Rep. Jovan Melton, D-Aurora.

Melton said Buckner was in pure OMB form during a trip to Colorado Springs last year, where they and Rep. Angela Williams of Denver canvassed support for former Rep. Tony Exum.