Morgan's Bills - 2009 Legislative Session
JOB CREATION, RENEWABLE ENERGY:
1) SB09-51, 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.
2) HB09-1149, 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.
ELECTION REFORM, VOTER RIGHTS:
3) HB09-1186, 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.
4) SB09-1336, Implementing Election Reform Commission Recommendations (Todd & Murray - Williams & Carroll, M.) Makes voting forms more user friendly, enfranchises voters at residential group facilities, allows counting of mail ballots to begin earlier, extends deadline for ballots to be received by military personnel voting overseas.
5) SB09-1337, Changes in Election Deadlines (Todd & Murray - Williams & Carroll, M.) Changes and clarifies deadlines in the election calendar.
HOMEOWNER / PROPERTY RIGHTS:
6) SB 09-249, Homeowner Rights (Penry & Carroll, M - A. Kerr): 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.
7) SB09-87, Special District Accountability Act (M. Carroll - Peniston): This bill would give notice to homeowners of the 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.
HEALTH CARE, PATIENTS RIGHTS:
8) 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.
9) HB09-1188, Skolnik Medical Revisions (M. Carroll – Ryden): 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.
10) HB09-1224, No Gender Discrimination in Rate Setting (Schafer – Carroll M.): 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.*
CONSUMER PROTECTION, PUBLIC TRANSPARENCY:
11) HB09-1155, 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.
12) HB 09-1276, Foreclosure Relief Act 2009 (Ferrandino - Carroll, M): 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.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM:
13) HB09-1263, Time Deductions County Jail (Casso - Carroll, M): 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.
14) HB09-1266, Driver's License Reform Criminal Corrections (McCann - Carroll, M): 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.
15) HB09-1274, Reallocate Death Penalty Funding (Weissmann - Carroll, M): 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.
16) HB09-1321, Juvenile Placement in Adult Facilities (Levy - Carroll, M): This protects juveniles who are not being charged as an adult from people housed in an adult populatin (i.e. recent suicide of juvenile in adult population). Passed House Judiciary 7:4.
17) SB09-286, Justice Reinvestment Act - Sentencing Reform (Morse, Carroll, M - Levy, Merrifield): Restructures sentencing, discretion for non-violent offenses in order to better invest where evidence supports improved outcomes, public safety and save the state money where current spending is not yielding results.
18) HB09-1351 (Pommer - Carroll, M): Gives discretion to DOC for early release credit 60 days time served for non-violent offenders with model behavior.
CIVIL RIGHTS - DISABILITY:
19) HB09-1281, Disability Representation on State Boards (Labuda - Carroll, M): 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.
MY BILLS THAT WERE DEFEATED THIS SESSION:
HEALTH CARE, PATIENTS RIGHTS:
1) SB09-103, 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. Passed Senate Health & Human Services 7-1. Passed Senate 3rd Reading. Defeated in House Health & Human Services.
2) SB09-61, 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. Passed Senate. Passed House Health & Human Services Committee. Defeated on House 3rd Reading.
AUTO INSURANCE, CONSUMER RIGHTS:
3) HB09-1226, No Fault Car Insurance (McGihon – Carroll, M.): 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. Killed Feb. 18, 2009 in House Business & Labor Committee 2:7.
HEALTH CARE, COST OF DRUGS, TRANSPARENCY, ETHICS:
4) SB09-166, Pharmaceutical Ethics Act (M. Carroll – Pace): 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 will increase transparency, reduce costs, protect patient privacy and increase patient safety in Colorado. Senate Hearing Feb. 18 - Pharmaceutical Lobby Killed the Bill on a vote of 1:6.
WORKERS' RIGHTS, HEALTH CARE:
5) HB09-1210, Sick Leave for Workers (McGihon - Carroll, M.): 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. Postponed Indefinitely in House Business, Labor Committee.
CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM:
6) SB09-288, Bed Space Allocation (Morse, Carroll, M - Levy, Merrifield): Adjusts sentencing to match available bed space in Colorado to better prioritize limited funds and budget within our available resources. Defeated.
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