Straight From the Senate - Dennis Hisey SD2

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ParkBull
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Re: Straight From the Senate - Dennis Hisey SD2

Post by ParkBull » Mon May 18, 2020 6:57 am

May 17, 2020 Business
The Key To The Budget

It’s official we’re looking to cut 3.3 million dollars out of the budget. Pretty safe to say the pain will be spread throughout the budget. The Joint Budget Committee (JBC) is still at work taking a second and third look at every department and every program.

The JBC has a couple of lists going, first one is a definitely cut list and that is about $1.7 billion, roughly half of what we need. Second list is smaller but is filled with things that would get a “second look” if they didn’t come up with the right amount by the time they finished this pass through the budget.

No one’s said it out loud but I have to wonder if that “second look” list is setting there hoping the federal government will come through with another round of stimulus funding, this one aimed at bailing out the states. I have some reservations about that.

To start with the states are required to balance their budgets with real money, they can’t print money or increase their dept by billions or trillions of dollars. A budget that uses schemes putting future generations on the hook to pay current bills is not balanced.

Furthermore, it is not the Federal Governments job to bail out the states. The states are sovereign, they retain all powers except those specifically delegated to the Federal Government. Colorado’s budget authority has never been delegated to the federal government. However, one thing will be true if a bailout comes, “the borrower will the servant of the lender be”. If we want to be under the control of Washington D.C. all we have to do is become dependent on their handouts.

There will be many budget related debates but what I really hope for is some good open discussion about how to get businesses open and not just “essential businesses”. It’s main street America and the people that work in those businesses that are taking it on the chin right now.

Expect to hear a lot of rural legislators make the point one size does not fit all. There is more to this state than the metro area. Denver needs do what Denver needs to do but rural and even some not so rural areas need to be able to do what they need to do.

The best way to get a handle on that budget problem is to get commerce flowing again. COVID 19 is with us, it will be with us for some time, we can’t hunker down and wish it away. We need to chart a course within this current reality that protects our basic freedoms and rights. That is the debate we need to be having.

I welcome your thoughts and comments on the happenings at the Capital or back in the district. Lots of ways to stay in touch; Office phone: 303-866-4877, Mobile phone: 719-351-2121, Email: SenatorHisey@gmail.com, Twitter: @SenDennisHisey, Facebook: Senator Dennis Hisey

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ParkBull
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Re: Straight From the Senate - Dennis Hisey SD2

Post by ParkBull » Mon May 25, 2020 6:56 am

May 23, 2020
Back In Session, Finally

I have high hopes for Part II of the Second Regular Session of the Seventy-second General Assembly. Word on the street is we’re going to wrap everything up in three weeks as opposed to the 58 days we have remaining of our 120 day constitutional limit. No reason why we shouldn’t be able to take care of what is important to the people of Colorado in three weeks.

What we won’t be debating - any bill that that carries a fiscal note – those will be killed in their next committee hearing or so the story goes. Will be curious to see how big of a priority a few bills like SB 163, the mandatory vaccination bill is to the majority party and see if they find the money to keep it alive.

So, here’s what should be on the calendar – noncontroversial bills that have made it through one chamber and are awaiting approval in the other chamber, sunset bills that authorize the rules under which agencies and government entities operate (like my Seed Potato bill last year) and any bill that saves the state money.

The big obvious bill of course is the budget, otherwise known as the long bill. But that’s a process that will require many separate bills to make the one big budget bill work. Some are good and necessary and some not so much.

That work is expected to take a week in the House and then a week in the Senate. We’ll take another full week because we strip all the House amendments off and add our own. It’s the way the process works, you can count on it every year just like spring follows winter. Then it goes back to the Joint Budget Committee which acts as the conference committee, which is why they are sometimes referred to as the “all powerful budget committee”.

Still a part of the budget, we need to see some bills getting the parts of Colorado open for business that can safely open for business. The way that stands right now that would be most of the state but especially rural Colorado.

Expect to see bills limiting liability for businesses in regards to COVID outbreaks - as long as the business is observing safety protocols. Might see some bills making permanent the loosening of regulations during the emergency declaration, those could apply to telemedicine, restaurant service, notary signatures or any number of subjects. I say that’s still part of the budget because the only way we’re going to fix the state’s budget woes is to get the Colorado economic machine running on all cylinders again and that means open businesses and employed people.

I welcome your thoughts and comments on the happenings at the Capital or back in the district. Lots of ways to stay in touch; Office phone: 303-866-4877, Mobile phone: 719-351-2121, Email: SenatorHisey@gmail.com, Twitter: @SenDennisHisey, Facebook: Senator Dennis Hisey

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