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Olympic medalists catch a tax break in Colorado after governor signs bill

From ColoradoPolitics.com:  http://coloradopolitics.com/olympic-medals-catch-tax-break-colorado-governor-signs-bill/

Governor Signs Bill Allowing Olympic Medal to be Tax Exempt

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper enacted House Bill 1104, exempting most Team USA athletes from state taxes on medals and bonuses won at the Olympic and Paralympic Games the United States Olympic Committee announced today. The new state-based legislation reinforces the federal law – the United States Appreciation for Olympians and Paralympians Act – that was enacted in October 2016, and exempts federal taxes for all Games medal-related income in 2018 and beyond.

"America's athletes and their families dedicate much of their lives and make considerable financial sacrifices to represent the United States on the world stage," said USOC CEO Scott Blackmun. "Unlike athletes in virtually all other countries, U.S. Olympians and Paralympians do not receive federal funding and must rely on the generous support of the American public and private sponsors for support. This legislation will provide much needed financial support to some of Colorado’s most dedicated amateur athletes and ensure their achievements are not devalued, but celebrated. The USOC is proud to be based in Colorado, a state that recognizes the unique sacrifices of Team USA athletes.”

In addition to medals, the bill also exempts taxes on monetary awards given to athletes for winning medals that may be granted by the USOC, or any sport-specific National Governing Body or Paralympic sport organization.

A bipartisan effort sponsored by Representative Clarice Navarro (R-Pueblo) and State Sen. Kevin Priola (R-Henderson), the state tax exemption does not apply to athletes who make an adjusted annual gross income exceeding $1 million or $500,000 if married and filing individually.

“With no federal funding, many athletes make financial sacrifices in order to represent our country at the Olympic and Paralympic Games,” said Mikaela Shiffrin, Colorado native and 2014 Olympic gold medalist in alpine skiing. “The Colorado initiative to eliminate taxes on medal earnings will have a positive impact on the many local athletes who compete for Team USA. Thank you, Colorado!”

“Most U.S. Olympians and Paralympians endure significant financial sacrifices for the honor to represent Team USA on some of the world’s biggest sporting stages,” said Amy Purdy, 2014 Paralympic snowboarding bronze medalist, who resides in Summit County, Colorado. “This legislation provides important financial support to some of Colorado’s most dedicated amateur athletes and their families.”

Gov. Hickenlooper joined members of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic family for a celebratory signing of the bill today at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Among those in attendance were several U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes who reside and train in Colorado. 

Representative Navarro’s Statement on the Passage of SB17-267

I don’t like the bill, and it is certainly not perfect.  I was a yes vote for rural Colorado today, and it was a tough yes for me to get to.  There is a serious lack of prioritization in the Colorado State Legislature.  However, it has started a serious conversation about where we go from here instead of the Band-Aid fix this bill provides. Rural schools needed this bill, rural roads needed this bill, and our rural hospitals needed this bill.

SB17-267 Protecting Rural CO - Statement by Rep Navarro

May 8, 2017 - I made the following statement on the House Floor this evening:


I rise this evening to speak in support of Senate Bill 267.  Am I pleased with everything in this bill, absolutely not.  Am I pleased with the prioritization that has taken place this Session, absolutely not.  However, this bill gets us closer than we have been all Session to a place that protects and supports rural Colorado. 

I want to thank Senator Sonnenberg and Representative Becker for bringing this bill forward, and there are aspects of this bill that get me to a YES vote. 

Members, this bill addresses the needs of rural Colorado in a way that I can live with at this time.  I can live with prioritizing rural transportation issues, I can live with prioritizing education funding in rural areas of our state, I can live with the accountability this bill will bring to the Department of Health Care Policy and Finance, I can live with the small steps toward Medicaid reform, and I can live with the protections this bill offers to the Senior Homestead Property Tax Exemption.

The financial stability in rural Colorado is important to me, and that is why I rise in support of this bill.  Our rural schools need this bill, our rural roads need this bill, and our rural hospitals need this bill.

While not perfect, I strongly urge a yes vote.

Rep. Navarro's bill protecting domestic violence victims is signed into law

DENVER, MAY 3, 2017 —Today, the governor signed Representative Clarice Navarro's (R-Pueblo) bill that protects victims of stalking and domestic violence. Current law denies bail to a person convicted of certain violent crimes, but judges have the discretion to grant bail between conviction and sentencing in cases of felony stalking or domestic violence; which in Colorado can be as 

much as six to eight weeks. House Bill 1150, which was passed unanimously out of both chambers, will deny bail between conviction and sentencing for cases involving felony stalking or domestic violence.

"This new law will be a sigh of relief to many victims who after enduring the stress of a criminal trial, won't have to fear retaliation from their attacker," said Navarro. "I am grateful to all the stakeholders and legislators who participated in this process and hope this new law empowers more victims of stalking and domestic violence to report the abuse they have suffered."

The bill takes effect on August 9, 2017.

Colorado bill protecting domestic violence victims signed into law (Fox News)


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