DENVER (AP) – Here’s what will be keeping Colorado lawmakers busy this week:
CRUCIAL REVENUE FORECAST
Lawmakers will get their quarterly forecast from economists Wednesday on the amount of taxes the state is bringing in. The report will play an important role in the annual state budget lawmakers will be debate and vote on in the coming weeks, and they’ll know how much surplus revenue they’ll have to refund to residents under the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. Lawmakers will also use the report to try to find funding for pending bills, including increasing penalties for repeat DUI offenders.
PARENT’S BILL OF RIGHTS
One of the most contentious bills of the year faces its toughest test when it gets its first House committee vote Thursday. The Republican-sponsored Parent’s Bill of Rights gives parents broad authority over their children’s school curriculum and medical treatment. The bill has already cleared the GOP-controlled Senate. But the bill’s opposition has come from Democrats, and they control the House.
STUDENT ARRESTS AND CITATIONS
Legislators want law enforcement to report data on student arrests for sexual assaults and marijuana use on school grounds. A bill being considered in a House committee Monday would add those cases to the list of violations on school property that must be reported to the state Department of Public Safety.
Colorado developers have long wanted lawmakers to put new curbs on lawsuits over defective home construction. Two long-awaited bills to tackle the issue get their first hearings of the year in Senate committees. One of the bills has bipartisan support, though many expect the bills to clear the Senate but fall flat in the Democratic-controlled House.
A longtime priority for some Republicans – increasing state control over federal lands – faces its first hearing Monday in a Senate committee. The bill giving Colorado “concurrent jurisdiction” has drawn the ire of conservation groups and faces almost certain doom in the Democratic-controlled House.
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