DENVER (AP) — Colorado lawmakers have a packed fourth week of the 2015 legislative session. To keep track of what’s coming up, five things to watch for this week:
Colorado’s perennial heated arguments over gun rights are slated to begin this week. The big day to watch will be Monday, when a Democratic House committee starts work on five gun bills, including new concealed carry regulations and a repeal of 2013’s background-check expansion. A similar background-check measure gets a Senate hearing the same day, in a GOP committee more inclined to approve it.
Expect a lot of action this week on marijuana. Senate committees are likely to advance bills to renew medical marijuana regulations and to add dispensaries to the list of places where customers can’t use government benefit cards at ATMs. In the House, a committee is expected to vote Tuesday on a divisive proposal to post signs warning pregnant women about using marijuana.
Many drivers hate red-light cameras, but police agencies and local governments say they save lives and officers’ time. Proposals to eliminate the cameras have been one of the most interesting cases of bipartisanship in recent years — both parties have influential lawmakers with strong opinions for or against a ban. This year’s red-light debate starts Wednesday in the House Transportation & Energy Committee.
Republicans have tried and failed to pass a law making repeat DUIs a felony. This year, the effort has the backing of Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper, so expect more success for the bill facing its first hearing Thursday in the House Judiciary Committee.
Colorado is one of the most expensive states for child care, but Republicans and Democrats have different ideas on how to bring down costs. A GOP proposal to eliminate state licensing requirements for in-home child care providers with fewer than 10 children is up for its first hearing Thursday in the Senate. Republicans say the change would bring down costs; Democrats argue the change would endanger kids.
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