May 26, 2009
As some of you know we have passed foreclosure reform in the State of Colorado (HB 09-1276 Ferrandino – M. Carroll) which gives more notice and opportunities for homeowners to stay in their home through renegotiated loans.
Many of you have also been following federal foreclosure policies as well, so I am cross-posting information from the White House about new federal foreclosure help as well.
The President has just signed the Helping Families Save Their Homes Act and the Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act into law, landmark pieces of legislation addressing the problems that helped set off the economic crisis we are fighting through now.
The Helping Families Save Their Homes Act expands on the success of the Making Home Affordable Program first announced in February. By reducing foreclosures around the country, the average homeowner could see their house price bolstered by as much as $6,000 as a result of this plan, and as many as 9 million homeowners could get help making their mortgages affordable and avoid preventable foreclosures. This bill makes this help easier to access and take advantage of, helps get credit flowing again, establishes protections for renters living in foreclosed homes, and establishes the right of a homeowner to know who owns their mortgage. It also provides $2.2 billion to address homelessness, helping families be part of the recovery one by one.
May 26, 2009
Below is the latest version of Hot Topics I have received from HCPF. I wanted to share this as it may be of interest to some of you.
Department of Health Care Policy and Financing
Prepared for the Colorado General Assembly
May 26, 2009
The Mission of the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing is to provide cost-effective, quality health care services to Coloradans.
Department of Health Care Policy and Financing
1570 Grant St.
Denver, CO 80203
Colorado.gov/hcpf Legislative Highlights
One of the most historic pieces of health care legislation put forth in decades is the Colorado Health Care Affordability Act, signed by Governor Ritter on April 21st, 2009. This legislation will provide health coverage to more than 100,000 uninsured Coloradans and reduce uncompensated care and will help stem the rising cost of health insurance for businesses and families by addressing cost-shifting.
House Bill 1293, sponsored by Representatives Riesberg and Ferrandino and Senators Keller and Boyd, assesses a provider fee on hospitals and will generate an additional $600 million a year to provide coverage to the uninsured, and receive $600 million in federal matching funds. The combined $1.2 billion would cover more than 100,000 currently uninsured Coloradans through Medicaid and the Child Health Plan Plus (CHP+). The funds also would improve hospital reimbursement rates for service provided through Medicaid and the Colorado Indigent Care Program (CICP).
Uninsured patients and Medicaid underpayment to hospitals are two of the primary causes of cost-shifting and rising healthcare costs for consumers, businesses and providers. By improving access to coverage and increasing hospital reimbursement rates, the Colorado Healthcare Affordability Act will address both of those drivers and help stem rising costs across the system. In turn, this will benefit businesses and families by reducing the cost shift and the rate at which health care costs are increasing.
The Colorado Hospital Association, the Department of Health Care Policy and Financing and the Governor's Office worked together for nearly a year to develop this legislation, which passed both the House and the Senate with more than 40 co-sponsors and bipartisan support.
Implementation of this legislation has already begun and will be a multi-year process. Staff are committed to working together to make this undertaking a success and we will be providing ongoing updates on our progress as we continue to roll out the process.
Our first bill introduced this session, Presumptive Eligibility for Long Term Care, House Bill 1103, sponsored by Representative Riesberg and Senator Newell permits the Department to seek federal authorization to allow a person in need of long term care to be presumptively eligible for Medicaid provided that the person declares all pertinent information relating to income and assets. Pending authorization and spending authority, the Department may implement a pilot program which would allow more rapid enrollment of persons who are Medicaid eligible.
The most important piece of this legislation is that it will allow more rapid enrollment for persons who are Medicaid-eligible to receive needed services while financial and supplemental security income verification is conducted. Currently during this time clients are not receiving services and there is a potential that the health status of these applicants worsens, with a resultant higher need and expenditure once enrolled. This bill has been signed by the governor.
Another bill from this session comes as a result of a Supreme Court decision in Ahlborn vs. Arkansas in which the court ruled unanimously to limit state Medicaid agencies' claims for reimbursement to the portion of any tort settlement attributable to medical expenses. The Department bill, Claims Against Third Parties or "Ahlborn", House Bill 1191 sponsored by Representative McCann and Senator Boyd, brings our state statute into compliance with the Supreme Court decision and acknowledges that the Department's lien only applies to amounts allowed by federal law. This bill has been signed by the governor.
The Colorado Cares Rx program was established in 2007 through the first bill signed by Governor Ritter. The program was created to provide a mechanism for uninsured, underinsured and seniors to purchase lower-cost generic and non-patented prescription drugs. The Department implemented Colorado Cares Rx on a one-year trial basis by offering a mail order discounted prescription drug program that is administered by Express Scripts. At the conclusion of the trial, Express Scripts decided that it was not interested in continuing the partnership with the Department.
Based on the current availability of multiple and varied discount prescription drug programs, the Department determined that Coloradans would be best-served by making a resource available that listed various ways in which prescriptions drugs can be obtained at a discount or for no cost as opposed to limiting Colorado Cares Rx to only one offering.
Modify Colorado Cares Rx, Senate Bill 132, Senator Boyd and Representative Kerr, is a bill created to address the discrepancies between the original Colorado Cares Rx bill compared to the current state of discount prescription drug programs while still upholding many of the merits of the original legislation, namely providing a mechanism for obtaining lower-cost prescription drugs. The Department will utilize the Colorado Cares Rx website to provide descriptions and contact information as to options available for obtaining lower-cost prescription drugs.
Our last bill of the session, House Bill 1353, Legal Immigrants' Eligibility for Public Medical Benefits, sponsored by Representative Miklosi and Senator Foster, allows the Department to provide benefits to lawfully residing pregnant women and children prior to the 5-year waiting period following their date of entry into the United States.
Provider Rate Cuts
In order to balance the budget for FY 2009-10 Medicaid expenditures had to be cut. The Department evaluated many options for reducing expenditures and ultimately settled on a solution that includes a two percent rate cut to Medicaid providers. The Department was given flexibility, however, in applying those rate cuts and will target utilization and volume reductions in order to avoid across-the-board reductions to providers. Such efforts are targeted at eliminating waste, duplication and unnecessary services which can be quantified, tracked and reported and can be used to off-set the across-the-board rate reductions that we must take. Items that may be considered include reducing emergency room utilization and decreasing hospital readmission rates. The Department is reaching out to all stakeholders to request that they partner with us in exploring opportunities to achieve reductions in Medicaid expenditures through focused and thoughtful initiatives. All of the recommendations received by Department staff will be evaluated for feasibility. After three to six months of tracking expenditure and utilization patterns for changes that were implemented, the Department will measure the efforts in order to determine if budget targets are being met. If expenditures exceed targets, the Department will be forced to implement larger rate reductions. You and your constituents can assist us in reaching our targets by sending ideas to Margaret Mohan with Acute Care Benefits Margaret.firstname.lastname@example.org by June 11, 2009. Ideas submitted after this date will be evaluated for implementation at a later time.
Colorado Medicaid Caseload Increases
The Department saw another month with a caseload increase that is among the largest ever seen in the State. Total Medicaid caseload increased by over 9,000 in the month of April to 457,699 and caseload has now increased by an average of nearly 5,000 per month in FY 2008-2009. Medicaid kids increased by over 6,600 in April, a nearly 3,300 per month increase for a total of just under 250,000. CHP+ kids decreased by 522 in April 2009 to 63,039. CHP+ caseload has increased by an average of 287 per month in FY 2008-09, and is now up 2,873 for the FY from July 1, 2008.
For more information on these or other topics, please contact Nicole Storm, Legislative Analyst, at 303-866-3180 or Nicole.Storm@state.co.us
May 26, 2009
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment issued the following press release today:
Colorado Department of Labor and Employment • 633 17th Street, Suite 600 • Denver, CO 80202 • (303) 318-8852 • Fax: (303) 318-8870
For Immediate Release
Date: May 22, 2009
Contact: Office of Government, Policy and Public Relations
Phone: (303) 318-8004
COLORADO LABOR FORCE DEVELOPMENTS
FOR APRIL 2009
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for Colorado edged down one-tenth of a percentage point to 7.4 percent in April, according to Donald J. Mares, Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment. "While this marks the first time since October 2007 that the unemployment rate has fallen, continued job losses will likely push Colorado's unemployment rate still higher in the upcoming months," cautioned Mares. One year ago the rate of joblessness stood at 4.7 percent.
Because results from the monthly household survey can be volatile, several months of labor force data are needed to confirm or establish trends in the estimates. After adjusting for normal seasonal labor force movements, the estimated number of employed Coloradans rose 13,200 during the month to 2,534,800. Despite this month's increase, total employment has fallen 62,900 over the past twelve months. Unemployment declined by 2,200 during the month to 201,300. The number of Colorado residents unsuccessfully seeking work has risen 74,000 since last April. First-time filings for unemployment insurance through the first four months of this year have doubled compared with the same period last year. The number of continued weeks claimed for unemployment insurance, an indicator of the degree of slack in the job market, also remains at very high levels.
In April, local area labor market conditions were generally favorable across Colorado. Fifty-four counties recorded lower employment rates over the month, while ten posted rates higher than their March levels. The lowest rate was found in Cheyenne County with a jobless rate of 3.3 percent. Dolores and San Juan counties posted the highest rates at 14.9 and 10.8 percent, respectively.
Wage and Salary Employment[ii]
According to the monthly survey of Colorado businesses, nonagricultural wage and salary fell 7,300 during the month to 2,258,400. This marks the largest April decline since the employment series began in 1939, with eight of the eleven major industry groups in the State paring workers over the month.
Leisure and hospitality trimmed 4,600 positions in April as the winter recreation season came to a close. Employment in other services shrank 1,600, manufacturing was off 1,200, and trade, transportation and utilities trended down 1,100. Mining and logging payrolls dropped 900 or 3.2 percent. Financial activities eliminated 700 jobs and information employment retreated 600. Government payrolls fell 400 as a large gain in federal employment due to temporary hiring for the decennial census was countered by losses in both state and local government.
Professional and business services led all expanding industries during the month, adding 2,200 positions due to seasonal hiring in its administrative and business support services component. Construction realized its first increase since last June, but its 900 job gain was only about one-quarter of its normal April advance. Education and health services trended up 700 positions with the entire gain occurring within the health care and social assistance subsector.
Nonfarm employment has now receded 90,400, or 3.8 percent, over the past twelve months. Job losses have been widespread with eight industries now registering lower employment levels than a year ago. Particularly hard hit have been professional and business services, down 31,500; construction, off 23,500; and trade, transportation and utilities, down 17,900. Substantial losses have also been recorded in manufacturing and financial services, down 12,400 and 10,300, respectively. Payrolls in leisure and hospitality have contracted 6,000 while smaller losses have occurred in financial activities and other services.
Employment in the public sector is up 8,600 since last April while payrolls in education and health services have risen 8,000. The boom in mining and logging has subsided and employment in this industry is about unchanged over the year, up 200.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the nation's unemployment rate rose to 8.9 percent. Nonfarm employment continued to decline in April, falling 539,000. About 5.7 million jobs have been lost since the recession began in December 2007. In April, job losses were large and widespread across nearly all major private sector industries. Employment in health care grew by 17,000 and rose 66,000 in federal government in preparation for the 2010 census.
[i] Labor force estimates are calculated from the household survey results, using the Bureau of Labor Statistics Local Area Unemployment Statistics methods. The unadjusted statewide and county level estimates are available at the following link:
[ii] Wage and salary employment estimates are calculated from the establishment survey results, using the Bureau of Labor Statistics Current Employment Statistics methods. The statewide adjusted and unadjusted, and the unadjusted MSA estimates are available at the following link:
[iii] The Bureau of Labor Statistics homepage is available at the following link:
May 08, 2009
HB 09-1274 was a bill that was narrowly defeated by one vote on the last day of session. It would have repealed the death penalty in the State of Colorado and reallocated the $1.5 million in minimum annual savings to the state CBI Cold Crimes Unit to solve unsolved homicides in the State of Colorado. The issue brought out deep, respectful soul-searching and debate on both sides. It is time as a society that we at least question the practice if not end it entirely.
Resources: The death penalty is a very expensive proposition, costing the State of Colorado approximately $3 – $4 million per year, yet has only yielded one execution in the last 40 years. That means that as much as $160,000,000 over the past 40 years could have been spent on other priorities, such as solving unsolved homicides.
Cold Cases: There are over 1,430 unsolved homicides in the State of Colorado where the murder remains at large and on the streets. The current state CBI Cold Case Unit has 1.0 FTE (full time employee) and a $68,000 database which is obviously inadequate to do justice to these unsolved crimes. While some local jurisdictions have cold case unit, the overwhelming majority of law enforcement jurisdictions do not. The benefit of a statewide unit is that it can reach across jurisdictions in the state to improve chances of solving crimes and offer support to local law enforcement where helpful.
Public Safety: In 1960 90% of all homicides were solved and by 2005 that figure had dropped to only 62%. Anywhere where there is an unsolved homicide there is someone has has literally gotten away with murder, walks the streets, and has left family, friends and communities with a hole that cannot be healed. The irony is that the public is equally as safe by sentencing life in prison without the possibility of parole as they are with the death penalty, but they are NOT equally as safe with murderers at large who have never even been found. Police chiefs ranked the death penalty last as a useful public safety tool. But we are ALL safer by putting as many murderers as possible behind bars for life.
Deterrence: While many people have assumed a deterrent effect for the death penalty, that is not borne out by the research. Killers rarely are rational enough to calculate the consequences of their actions. According to the 2006 FYI Uniform Crime Report, the South had the highest murder rate in the country. The South also accounts for over 80% of the executions in the country. If the death penalty were a deterrent that should have one of the lowest murder rates. 84% of criminologists reject the notion that the death penalty acts as a deterrent to murder.
Errors and Exonerations: Despite great diligence, Governments are fallible. There have been over 130 exonerations of people that we know of on death row and an unknown number of people we don't know about. There is no way to be 100% accurate and executing the wrong person for a crime is not only an irreversible error but is a stain on all citizens in a democracy. Just because a crime is heinous does guarantee that we are killing the person who actually did it. From 2000 – 2007 there have been an average of 5 exonerations per year. The room for error on a life and death decision is zero.
The Company We Keep: So who else is using the death penalty these days? In 2007, 88% of all executions in the world were carried out by China, Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and the United States. Other countries executing people during this time with use of the death penalty include Afghanistan, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iraq, Libya, Somalia and Syria.
Uneven Application of the Death Penalty & Equal Protection: The sentence and delivery of the death penalty has less to do with the nature of the crime and the criminal than it does wealth, race of the accused, race of the victim, region of the country / state, ability to afford legal counsel. Even for people who support the judicious use of the death penalty will find themselves concerned that whether one lives or dies has more to do with class and race than the crime itself. 96% of states where there have been reviews of the death penalty there was a pattern of race-of-victim or race-of-defendant discrimination or both. Odds of receiving death sentence rose by 3.5 times among those whose whose victims were white.
The Elimination of the Death Penalty: It is interesting to note that crime has NOT gone up in the 95 countries without the death penalty. In fact our crime rate remains higher. The legislatures have abolished the death penalty in the following states: Alaska, Hawaii, Iowa, New Jersey, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Vriginia, Wisconsin and the District of Columbia. The executive branch has issued a moratorium on state execution since 2000 in the State of Illinois. The Courts have found the following states death penalty statutes unconstitutional and the the statute has not been repealed: Massachusetts, New York, Nebraska. There is a de facto moratorium in the states of Maryland and Arkansas due to various procedural issues.
The main argument for the death penalty is that people either believe it is a deterrent (which is not supported by the research) or that there are just some crimes that are so heinous that a person deserves to die. Every murder is heinous. It is hard to teach that killing is wrong by killing.
Some of the Interesting Voices / Perspectives in Support of the Bill: The coalition in support of the bill was more varied than one might imagine.
- Families of Homicide Victims: The Families of Homicide Victims and Missing Persons supported this bill not only because it provided a desperately needed funding source for the state cold crimes unit but also as some witnesses said, they didn't feel better after execution, or nothing brings back their loved one, or "death was too easy". Obviously some victims do support the death penalty.
- Former (& some current) Prosecutors: Testified that it is a huge drain on resources and that it is nearly impossible to tell families that this murder is more heinous than that murder. We will seek the death penalty here but not there.
- Exoneree: One gentleman testified who was later exonerated and lived through spending 12 years on death row and 3 execution dates before he was finally exonerated and talked about what it was like to be on death row and what this did to his family.
- Former Prison Wardon: A former prison warden from Florida testified that he not only used to support the death penalty but was personally responsible for executing several inmates. He says we do NOT need the death penalty to keep prisons safe and keep dangerous people from the public. He also said that nearly all the executioners involved need serious counseling for PTSD.
- Criminal Defense Bar: Perhaps not surprising the criminal defense bar also supported this measure but noted that it not only takes a huge toll on public resources but that rich people don't get executed and who one gets as a lawyer may decide if a person lives or dies.
- Colorado Council of Churches: They testified in support of the bill in the belief that all life is sacred and that redemption and repentence are core principles of many religions. One can not repent or take responsibility once dead. Furthermore, some Christians have noted that the the execution of Jesus Christ is seen by many as perhaps the most prominent example of a wrongful use of the death penalty, despite being an accepted practice at the time.
The bill also had support from:
- Coloradoans Against the Death Penalty
- Catholic Health Initiatives
- Colorado CURE
- Colorado College
- La Voz
- Colorado Council of Chambers
- Colorado Progressive Coalition
- Colorado Criminal Defense Bar
- Families of Homicide Victims and Missing Persons
- Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition
- Progress Now
- Catholic Coalition
- Hunger for Justice
- Colorado Council of Churches
- Jail Minitry of Metropolitan Community Church of the Rockies
- Colorado Council of Churches
- Colorado NAACP
- All Souls Unitarian Church
- American Friends Service Committee
- Archdiocese of Denver
- Colorado Legal Services
- Congregation Emanuel
- Denver Urban Spectrum
- First Unitarian Church
- Graham Memorial Community Church
- Denver Urban Ministries
- Iliff School of Theology
- Jefferson Unitarian Church
- Justice Information Center
- New Covenant Christian Church
- Rocky Mountain Peace and Justice Center
- Sam Cary Bar Association
- Colorado Hispanic Bar Association
- VORP of Boulder County
- Lutheran Advocacy Ministry
- …And more
May 07, 2009
JOB CREATION, RENEWABLE ENERGY
1) SB 09-51, Renewable Energy Financing Act: (M. Carroll – Levy): This bill facilitates several different financing options (3rd party lease, bank, mortgage, state treasury backed investments and loans) for residential and business solar, geothermal, wind or energy efficiency upgrades in payment plans. This measure will bring investment capitol to Colorado, make alternative energy upgrades more affordable for hundreds of thousands of people and create new jobs. SIGNED 04.22.09.
2) HB 09-1149, Solar Option New Homes: (Merrifield – M. Carroll): This bill creates a standard offer of solar-ready on construction of new homes. It is usually cheaper to build it in at the time of constructing a new home, rather than retrofitting solar. As homes comes with many options, this would be one more to facilitate renewable energy, jobs, and energy independence. PENDING action by Governor.
ELECTION REFORM, VOTER RIGHTS
3) HB 09-1186, Expanding Mail Ballot Drop-Off: (Levy – M. Carroll): This bill enables voters to drop off their mail ballots at any precinct voting location. Currently there are a small number of approved drop off locations and many voters who appeared at polling locations were turned away as unable to accept mail ballots. Passed House 37-28. Passed Senate State Affairs. Passed Senate 3rd Reading 21:14. SIGNED by Governor 04.03.09.
HOMEOWNER / PROPERTY RIGHTS
4) SB 09-249 (Penry & Carroll, M – A. Kerr) Homeowner Rights. Expanding homeowner rights under SB 100. Several rights afforded under SB 100 were inadvertently codified in a way to raise ambiguity as to whether or not they applied to small HOAs. This clarifies that the public policy rights apply to all homeowners regardless of size of HOA. PENDING action by Governor.
5) SB 09-87, Special District Accountability Act: (M. Carroll – Peniston): This bill would give notice to homeowners of the special districts they live in, and annual actual notice to eligible electors about when / where special district elections are held, who represents them and when / where regularly scheduled meetings are held. PENDING Action by Governor.
HEALTH CARE, PATIENTS RIGHTS
6) HB 09-1059, Clinical Trials Coverage Health Insurance (Primavera – M. Carroll): This bill puts basic protections in place for patients during clinical trials and ensures continuity of health insurance coverage during such trials to protect patient safety and avoid disincentives to participate in important research. SIGNED by Governor 05.02.09.
7) HB 09-1188 (M. Carroll – Ryden) Skolnik Medical Revisions: I wrote original Michael Skolnik Medical Transparency Act in 1997 to get patients more information about their doctor's history when making health care decisions, including safety record, complaint, grievance, malpractice history along with board certifications and special qualifications and training. 2009 is the year physicians must renew their licenses and this bill makes some important but technical changes to help that process this year. SIGNED by Governor 03.30.09.
HB 09-1224 (Schafer – Carroll M.) No Gender Discrim Rate Setting: This bill finally would prohibit gender discrimination in insurance rate setting and premiums. While women still earn only 77% on the dollar and can often be the sole care-taker of children, they are charged more than their male counter-parts in the pricing of insurance. This is a economic justice and civil rights issue bringing Colorado on board with the many states that have already fixed this. *The House amended this bill into a study.* Passed House 3rd Reading 49-16. Senate State Affairs Amended back from Study to Actual Prohibition. Senate Floor Bill was Amended back to a Study and Passed. PENDING Action by Governor.
9) SB 09-166 (M. Carroll – Pace) Pharmaceutical Ethics Act – The single largest cost driver behind the increasing cost of health care and premiums is the drug companies. Over 2/3 of the cost of drugs come from gifts, advertising and marketing (and not the actual research or manufacturing of the drug). This bill creates a pharmaceutical gift ban (except samples, education), captures annual disclosure of costs, prohibits the invasion / sales of your prescription history and establishes minimum conflict of interest protections in Colorado healthcare. The bill increased transparency, reduce costs, protect patient privacy and increase patient safety in Colorado. DEFEATED.
10) SB 09-61, Qualifications for doctors reviewing insurance claims: (M. Carroll – Primavera): This requires that doctors reviewing insurance claims or decisions to approve or deny claims be licensed to practice medicine in the state of Colorado and that the reviewing provider be of a same or similar specialty as the treating physician whom they are reviewing. DEFEATED.
11) SB 09-103, Insurance Bad Faith: (M. Carroll – Pommer): This bill prohibits as an "unfair claim practice" insurance companies from offering bonuses, pay raises or promotions for the denial of claims or the cancellation of policies. Consumers experience this in the form of denied care, delayed payment of medical bills or cancellation of their policies. DEFEATED.
CONSUMER PROTECTION, PUBLIC TRANSPARENCY
12) HB 09-1155, Title Insurance Filings: (Weissmann – M. Carroll): Title insurance companies only pay about 10% of your premiums on actual claims, raising real questions about the rating structure. Currently their rate filings aren't even filed at the Division of Insurance to allow meaningful review. This bill requires public filings so they are available for review and to the public. Governor SIGNED into law 03.19.09.
13) HB 09-1276 (Ferrandino – Carroll, M) Foreclosure Relief Act 2009: This bill provides a 90 day window for qualified borrowers to renegotiate loan conditions to keep families in their houses and prevent banks from losing money on foreclosure of homes. There is no bailout component to this bill. PENDING Action by Governor.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM
14) HB 09-1263 (Casso – Carroll, M) Time Deductions County Jail: This bill reallocates credit for time served in county jail to better manage space and resources for local governments and public safety and was recommended by the Commission on Sentencing Reform. SIGNED by Governor 04.03.09.
15) HB 09-1266 (McCann – Carroll, M) Driver's License Reform Criminal Corrections: This bill makes it so that the loss of driver's licenses for a penalty can be only if the offense was tied to driving. PENDING action by Governor.
16) HB 09-1274 (Weissmann – Carroll, M): Reallocate Death Penalty Funding: This bill reallocates death penalty and capital crimes funding to create a state cold crimes unit to fund and focus on solving unsolved homicides in the State of Colorado. Passed House 33:32. Defeated in Senate 17:18. DEFEATED.
17) HB 09-1321 (Levy – Carroll, M): Juvenile Placement in Adult Facilities: This protects juveniles who are not being charged as an adult from people housed in an adult population (i.e. recent suicide of juvenile in adult population). PENDING Action By Governor.
18) SB 09-286 (Morse, Carroll, M – Levy, Merrifield): Justice Reinvestment Act – Sentencing Reform. Amended to refer parameters, guidelines and deadlines to Colorado Criminal & Juvenile Justice Commission. PENDING Action by Governor.
19) SB 09-288 (Morse, Carroll, M – Levy, Merrifield): Bed Space Allocation. Adjusts sentencing to match available bed space in Colorado to better prioritize limited funds and budget within our available resources. DEFEATED.
20) HB 09-1351 (Pommer – Carroll, M): Increased Earned Time Allowance. This bill increases earned time allowance from 10 days to 12 and allows up to 60 days credit on end of sentence for certain non-violent offenses where no behavioral infractions in DOC at discretion of DOC. PENDING Action by Governor.
CIVIL RIGHTS – DISABILITY
21) HB 09-1281: (Labuda – Carroll, M) Disability Representation on State Boards. This bill provides for representation from the disability community on all boards that impact people with disabilities. Also known as the "Nothing About Us, Without Us" bill. Passed House 60:4:(1 excused). PENDING Action by Governor.
AUTO INSURANCE, CONSUMER RIGHTS
22) HB 09-1226 (McGihon – Carroll, M.) No Fault Car Insurance: This measure would restore Colorado to a No-Fault system rather than the current "tort" system, making it easier for people injured in car accidents to get access to medical care without having to go to Court and easier for 1st responders and medicals providers to get paid for the care they provide. DEFEATED.
WORKERS' RIGHTS, HEALTH CARE
23) HB 1210 (McGihon – Carroll, M.) Sick Leave for Workers: This bill gives limited paid sick to workers based on the size of the employer to address preventive health needs and reduce sickness and contagion in the workplace and in public without fear of termination or retaliation. DEFEATED.
24) HB 09-1348 (Weissmann – Carroll, M.) Constituent Confidentiality. This bill closes a loophole in protecting the confidentiality of constituent communications and work product in drafting with the staff of the legislator. PENDING Action by Governor.
25) HCR 09-1005 (May – Carroll, M) Non-Partisan Re-Districting. This measure would have had the non-partisan independent redistricting commission extend to the drawing of Congressional Districts to avoid gerrymandering in the process. DEFEATED.
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