Legislative News

Recall elections revised; no Supreme Court review

Make room for the Libertarian candidate in upcoming recall elections
The Colorado Statesman

Recall elections to oust Senate President John Morse of Colorado Springs and state Sen. Angela Giron of Pueblo were once again thrown into flux this week after a Denver District Court judge’s ruling essentially made mail-ballot voting impossible. A few days later, the Colorado Supreme Court declined to hear the case on appeal and let the District Court ruling stand.

Judge Robert McGahey ruled from the bench Monday evening after hearing a day’s worth of arguments on a lawsuit brought by the Colorado Libertarian Party.

‘Good bipartisan policy’ is goal of new leg director

Tracee Bentley replaces Christine Scanlan as Hickenlooper’s liaison
The Colorado Statesman

Tracee Bentley acknowledges that she has big shoes to fill. As Gov. John Hickenlooper’s new legislative director, she is replacing former Rep. Christine Scanlan, a Democrat, who served the governor since he was elected in 2010.

“They’re so big I don’t think I can fill them,” Bentley laughed as she described the changing of the guard in the governor’s legislative office. “But I’ll do my best.”

Advisory committee says SB 252 is feasible, but…

The Colorado Statesman

The advisory committee trying to decide whether SB 13-252 is feasible is closing in on an answer: “Yes, but.”

The committee met Wednesday to review the legislation in-depth and discuss just how much it would cost for the two impacted rural electric co-ops to meet the 20 percent renewable energy standard (RES) required under SB 252. That standard must be met by 2020.

Ballots set for legislative recall elections

Sens. Morse, Giron will face voters on Sept. 10; campaigns in full gear
The Colorado Statesman

With legal challenges behind, campaigns are in full swing in Senate Districts 3 and 11 where Sen. Angela Giron of Pueblo and Senate President John Morse of Colorado Springs are facing recalls. For political observers, the odd-year summer battles are historic. The two recalls are the first for sitting lawmakers in state history.

But what will happen on Sept. 10 when clerks in El Paso and Pueblo counties hold elections is still very much up in the air.

Legislators return to Capitol for summer school

The Colorado Statesman

After a two-month break, some legislators are returning to the state capitol for the start of summer interim committee meetings.

First out of the gate: the economic opportunity poverty reduction task force. Sen. John Kefalas, D-Fort Collins, chairs the 10-member group. The task force was authorized by 2009 legislation, but in the wake of budget cuts did not formally meet after that.

State Sen. Owen Hill seeks U.S. Senate seat

The Colorado Statesman

The recently barren field of Republican challengers to incumbent U.S. Sen. Mark Udall has suddenly blossomed, with two state lawmakers seeding the ground for their races in 2014, and the district attorney in Weld County indicating that he may try to regenerate his efforts to secure a U.S. Senate seat.

DelGrosso tapped as new Minority Leader in House

The Colorado Statesman

Rep. Brian DelGrosso, R-Loveland, was elected by acclamation Thursday morning as the House Republican Minority Leader, succeeding Rep. Mark Waller who resigned his leadership post earlier this month so he can run for attorney general.

“I am both humbled and honored that my colleagues have entrusted me with this new role,” said DelGrosso afterwards.

Committee begins work on hot button SB 252

But whether cooler heads will prevail is yet to be determined
The Colorado Statesman

The committee that will figure out whether SB 13-252 is actually doable begins meeting this week to review the law signed by Gov. John Hickenlooper last month.

The law requires certain rural electric providers, those with at least 100,000 meters, to increase their use of renewable energy resources from the previous 10 percent standard to 20 percent by 2020. Providers must do so without raising renewable rates by more than 2 percent.

Recall opponents plead their case, claim petition language was faulty

And they also accuse proponents of forging petition signatures
The Colorado Statesman

Campaigns behind two Democratic lawmakers facing recall elections believe they have a clean shot at compelling the secretary of state’s office to nullify the petition signatures gathered by proponents.

Senate President John Morse of Colorado Springs and Sen. Angela Giron of Pueblo are standing on the firing line after proponents in Morse’s Senate District 11 and Giron’s Senate District 3 gathered the necessary signatures to force respective recall elections.

Stephens ‘considering’ 2014 U.S. Senate race

Rep. Amy Stephens one of four potential candidates for U.S. Senate
The Colorado Statesman

Colorado Republican State Chairman Ryan Call on Wednesday dangled out the names of four potential candidates to run against Democratic U.S. Senator Mark Udall in 2014. But only one — state Rep. Amy Stephens, R-Monument — sounded as if she might take the bait, although former Congressman Bob Beauprez acknowledged that he “can’t help but think about how or if I can make a difference.”

Stephens was more direct. “Yes, I am giving it some consideration,” she flatly acknowledged to The Colorado Statesman on Friday. “A number of people have come to me. I’ll take a look at it.”