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Colorado State Representative

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    Small businesses are our true job creators .... MORE →
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    Water is the “lifeblood” of Southern Colorado. MORE →
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    Agriculture is the backbone to our culture, history and economy in Southern Colorado. MORE →
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    Parents and local school boards know what is best for their children .... MORE →

REP. NAVARRO SELECTED AS WOMEN IN GOVERNMENT STATE DIRECTOR FOR 2015

The Women In Government (WIG) Organization’s Board of Directors have selected Representative Clarice Navarro as a State Director for 2015. Representative Navarro will represent the state of Colorado, and represent women working in legislation within Colorado.
 
Women In Government Foundation, Inc., headquartered in Washington, D.C., is a national, non-profit, non-partisan organization of women state legislators that provides leadership opportunities, and educational resources to address and resolve complex public policy issues to all 1,791 women state legislators.
 
Navarro said, “I’m honored to be a part of such an outstanding group of women leaders in America. Encouraging women to become actively involved in politics is a passion of mine, and this group certainly offers the platform to continue my work of empowering women across the great state of Colorado.”
 
Representative Navarro traveled to Florida this weekend to help build the excitement for the WIG Conference that will be held this May in Colorado.  Navarro said, “This is a great opportunity to mesh my love for economic prosperity in Colorado, and to welcome some of the best and brightest women from around the Nation to Colorado.  The conference will have a beneficial economic impact”.
 
As State Director, Representative Navarro will continue her efforts of encouraging fellow legislators to attend WIG events, offer a conservative perspective, and disseminate policy resources and information.
 
For more information about the Women in Government Organization please go to:  http://www.womeningovernment.org/about

It’s Not Our Money to Spend – You Earned It – You Spend It

The 2015 Colorado State Legislative Session brings a number of big issues to the forefront for the Legislature and the people of Colorado: energy development, the marijuana industry, gun restrictions; the list can go on and on with topics that will change the lives of many Coloradans. One topic that has just as much prominence, and has made a big wave among concerned legislators is the tax refund issue and TABOR.  If you read nothing further, please take this advice…HOLD ON TO YOUR WALLETS COLORADO TAX PAYERS.

The exact repayment figures and who would qualify remains unclear, but analysts estimate $137 million in TABOR refunds for the 2015 fiscal year. 

Many Democrats in the State Legislature aren’t realizing that there are some positives to TABOR.  I’m already hearing some on the other side of the aisle offering the tired rhetoric that TABOR makes it harder to restore budget cuts, but in reality, TABOR is a system that provides some benefits.  TABOR prevents government overspending, and frankly, I am appalled that there is even the consideration of not returning this money to the people of Colorado.  This is money that they are legally entitled to.

An economic viewpoint is, yes, the TABOR refunds will be taking surplus money from the government and giving it back to the people of Colorado. That does not mean that this money will not be put to use to benefit the state as it would if it was left in the hands of politicians. Most people will use this money to pay their bills, some will save it, and some will impulsively spend it. The increase of investing, saving, and consuming will expand the private sector and benefit Colorado’s economic growth. TABOR keeps the growth of the government in line with the growth of the private sector thus creating more economic stability, which in turn benefits everyone.

The people of Colorado enacted TABOR in 1992; therefore by law, it is money that belongs to the people of Colorado. There is always something that the government can spend excess money on, no matter the amount of money the state has control of.  Politicians will always find something to allocate it towards. The plain and simple fact of it is, the excess money is not the state’s money in the first place, and that money belongs to the tax payers of Colorado. It is our duty as fiscally responsible representatives of the people of the state of Colorado to honor the TABOR refund and honor the people of Colorado. The people who earned it know best how to spend it.

Lawmakers mingle at Colorado Restaurant Association reception

From the Denver Post, 1-8-2015:  http://blogs.denverpost.com/thespot/2015/01/08/lawmakers-mingle-colorado-restaurant-association-reception/116053/

Three Pueblo lawmakers, Republican Clarice Navarro and Democrats Leroy Garcia and Daneya  Esgar, at the Blue Ribbon Reception Jan. 7 at the Brown Palace. (Lynn Bartels, The Denver Post) Three Pueblo lawmakers, Republican Clarice Navarro and Democrats Leroy Garcia and Daneya Esgar, at the Blue Ribbon Reception Jan. 7 at the Brown Palace. (Lynn Bartels, The Denver Post)

Douglas County Treasurer Diana Holbert and her husband, state Sen. Chris Holbert at a restaurant reception Wednesday.  (Lynn Bartels, Denver Post) Douglas County Treasurer Diane Holbert and her husband, state Sen. Chris Holbert, at a restaurant reception Wednesday. (Lynn Bartels, Denver Post)

For many lawmakers, their favorite reception of the year is the one sponsored on opening day by the Colorado Restaurant Association.

For Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper the event is like going home: He owned restaurants before going into politics in 2003 and getting elected mayor of Denver. Hickenlooper always gets a hearty reception but new Senate President Bill Cadman, a Colorado Springs Republican, might have stolen the show with his brief remarks.

He said the words that make his wife of 24 years happy these days start with “Let’s go out to eat.”

House GOP Newsletter - Dec. 29, 2014

 


House GOP Newsletter  
December 29, 2014  Like
♦House Republican Legislative Agendas   ♦House GOP Press Releases 

♦Tweets of the Week

Recently, House Republicans announced their remaining caucus agenda bills focusing on education and jobs and the economy. These agenda areas join responsible government and public safety and victim protection to complete the 2015 legislative agenda. All agenda bills are listed in this newsletter edition. 

Education

Representative Kevin Priola (R-Henderson) will be introducing the Greatest Resources for Education Are Teachers Act, also known as the GREAT Act. The bill creates a four-year grant program enabling school districts to offer salary bonuses to attract and retain the highest rated teachers to Colorado's lowest performing schools.

"Highly effective teachers are one of the most critical factors in reducing the achievement gap and making a difference in a student's education and life," said Priola. "The GREAT Act is a common-sense way to incentivize our best teachers to teach where they are most needed, while rewarding their efforts to improve our lowest performing schools." 

Representative Clarice Navarro (R-Pueblo) will be introducing legislation that mirrors a federal tax deduction, which was repealed in 2013, creating a state tax deduction for Colorado teachers. The bill will provide a $250 deduction in fiscal year 2015 that will increase by $250 in each of the following two years to offset the costs of books, supplies, computer equipment, and other supplementary materials purchased by the teacher and used in his or her classroom.

"Any time we can reduce taxes on the hard working people of Colorado I'm for it.  The federal tax deduction helped offset expenses teachers voluntarily incurred to purchase much-needed supplies and materials for their classrooms," said Navarro. "We have the means in our state budget to replace this tax deduction and help the generous teachers who use their own salary to enhance their students' learning experience.  Our teachers and our kids deserve this."

Representative-elect Jon Becker (R-Fort Morgan) will be introducing a bill allocating future budget surpluses to K-12 and higher education. Becker's bill will direct 70% of each future surplus to the State Education Fund until the negative factor is eliminated, and 30% to a new fund for higher education.

"Allocating future budget surpluses to K-12 and higher education will help provide much-needed resources to these areas that were cut during the recent recession," said Becker. "Education is our highest priority and ensuring future surpluses benefit education is the most prudent and effective use for these funds." 

Jobs & the Economy

Representative-elect Yeulin Willett (R-Grand Junction) will be introducing a bill adding additional incentives to rural enterprise zones. Enterprise zones were created to incentivize businesses to establish or expand their operations in certain areas of Colorado by providing a tax credit to off-set investment costs.

"The current restrictions in enhanced rural enterprise zones, including the $750,000 enterprise zone tax credit cap, limits growth and deters new businesses from moving to rural Colorado," said Willett. "The prosperity on the Front Range has not reached rural Colorado, and by providing additional incentives in these depressed rural areas we can give businesses more resources to create jobs, increase wages and bring more prosperity to these parts of our state."

Representative-elect Dan Thurlow (R-Grand Junction) will be introducing legislation to increase the Business Personal Property Tax (BPPT) credit from $15,000 to $25,000.

"Members on both sides of the aisle agree the business personal property tax is one of Colorado's most onerous taxes on business," said Thurlow. "Increasing the business personal property tax credit will help thousands of small businesses in Colorado expand their payrolls, grow their business and ultimately improve our state's economy."

Assistant Minority Leader Libby Szabo (R-Arvada) will be introducing the Regulatory Reform Act of 2015, which will require state agencies to provide written warnings to small businesses for first-time violations of new rules in lieu of fines.

"In the past two years, Democrats have heaped more regulations on Colorado's small businesses, making each year more challenging than the last," said Szabo. "As a small business owner, I know how expensive and time consuming it is to stay current with the thousands of pages of new regulations. My bill will direct state agencies to help small business owners comply with the growing bureaucratic rules rather than penalize them for minor first-time violations."

Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso (R-Loveland) will be introducing legislation that will eliminate punitive damage awards authorized under House Bill13-1136.

"The bill Democrats passed in 2013 specifically exempted government agencies from being subject to punitive damages in discrimination cases," said DelGrosso. "My bill will extend this same exemption to small businesses, leveling the playing field between the public and private sectors."

Representative-elect Jack Tate (R-Centennial) will be introducing a bill requiring the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE) clearly state the purpose of an audit and prohibiting CDLE from going beyond the stated scope.

"State audits of private businesses should be focused on a specific purpose and not a fishing expedition," said Tate. "Requiring CDLE to clearly articulate an audit's scope will help protect businesses while also helping them better prepare for and cooperate in the audit process."

Public Safety & Victim Protection

Representative Lori Saine (R-Firestone) will be introducing legislation allowing district attorneys to charge a third DUI within seven years or a fourth DUI in a lifetime as a felony. Her bill mirrors the bill she sponsored with Representative Mark Waller (R-Colorado Springs) last year that was killed by Senate Democrats on a party-line vote.

 "House Republicans have tried to increase penalties for habitual DUI offenders three times in the past five years and each time Democrats have blocked this important public safety measure," said Saine. "This year, I hope Democrats will finally realize habitual drunk drivers threaten everyone on Colorado roads and help give our district attorneys the tools needed to get these offenders off our roads." 

Representative-elect JoAnn Windholz (R-Commerce City) will be introducing a bill banning powdered alcohol in Colorado until such time as the Food and Drug administration approves it for consumption in the United States.

"When voters legalized recreational marijuana, they were likely not worried about kids getting gummy bears and other popular candies laced with THC; however, that is the reality parents now face. While powdered alcohol is not the same drug as marijuana, it's a new product that will likely experience new and unforeseen changes similar to marijuana products' evolutions," said Windholz. "A statewide ban pending FDA approval will allow Colorado to proactively establish a regulatory framework limiting powdered alcohol's risks to our kids."

Representative Dan Nordberg (R-Colorado Springs) will be introducing a bill mandating requirements for reporting missing children in the foster care system.

"Children in foster care are the most vulnerable of our youth and highly susceptible to the lies and false promises of human traffickers. In situations where these children do fall victim, time is of the essence and the sharing of information is critical to their recovery," said Nordberg. "My bill would direct State Child Welfare agencies to immediately report missing foster children to law enforcement, via the FBI's National Crime Information Center, as well as to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children."

Representative-elect Terri Carver (R-Colorado Springs) will be introducing a bill that will protect domestic violence victims.

"Victims of domestic violence may have their home addresses readily available on the internet, which can put them at risk for further abuse or retaliation from their abuser. This bill will help protect victims by shielding access to information about their residence," said Carver.

Responsible Government

House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso (R-Loveland) will be introducing a bill to transfer $100 million in one-time monies from the General Fund to rebuild roads and bridges across Colorado.

"The safety of our roads and bridges affects all Coloradans," said DelGrosso. "This one-time $100 million dollar investment in our infrastructure is a fiscally prudent way to allocate our current resources and ensure Colorado's families and businesses are travelling on safe roads and bridges."

Representative Perry Buck (R-Windsor) will be introducing a bill requiring counties that enact a fracking ban to compensate mineral owners for the lost value of their property.

"Our government should not have the authority to deprive a mineral owner of their property without just compensation," said Buck. "My bill protects mineral owners and ensures they will be fairly compensated if a county decides to enact a fracking ban."

Representative Dan Nordberg (R-Colorado Springs) will be sponsoring a bill that will expand the Colorado Office of the State Auditor's oversight of Connect for Health Colorado. Rep. Nordberg carried identical legislation last year, but while the bill passed the House by a vote of 60-1, Democrats in the Senate Committee on Health & Human Services killed the bill on a party-line vote.

"The state Auditor's recent limited performance audit of Connect for Health Colorado identified numerous violations of federal law, mismanagement, and wasteful spending," said Nordberg. "Connect for Health Colorado must be held accountable to the tax payers and this bill will finally give the state Auditor the much-needed authority to perform oversight over this organization."

House Press Releases

 Tweets of the Week  

Jon Becker




Jon Becker @JonJBecker

Great news for rural students RT @denbizjournal: Community college students have more options for degrees bizj.us/191ed3 #edcolo







Jon Keyser








Jon Keyser @Jon_Keyser

Let's welcome HOME our CO active duty military. #coloradoproud #coleg link.kdvr.com/1rfU32x via @KDVR







Coveted Committee Assignments

Representative Navarro was assigned to two committees for 2015, the Business Affairs and Labor Committee, and the Local Government Committee, same as 2014, and both of which she has a strong passion for. Representative Navarro said, “I’m excited for this upcoming session and the committees I will be serving on, not only do I want my constituency to benefit from this, but also the greater part of Colorado, the other committee members and I have big plans for this upcoming year.” 

House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso (R-Loveland) announced committee assignments for members of the House Republican caucus. "We are fortunate to have so many talented new and returning members in our caucus," said DelGrosso. "Our members' wealth of knowledge and experience from the private sector will be an invaluable contribution to the legislative process and help us achieve a more prosperous Colorado."  

The Business Affairs and Labor Committee that Representative Navarro is on oversees Business, Labor, Economic, and Workforce Development considers matters regarding the regulation of professions and occupations, property and casualty insurance, unemployment insurance, health insurance, workers' compensation insurance, economic development, banks and financial institutions, real estate, labor, and technology, and a number of different economic and labor departments within Colorado.  

The House Local Government Committee represents local governments, special districts, housing, and land use planning. In addition, the committee has legislative oversight responsibility for the Department of Local Affairs.

State Representative Navarro Selected for Bipartisan Trade Mission to China

State Representative Clarice Navarro, a Republican, serving Colorado's 47th House District, is taking part in a bipartisan trade mission to China that includes state and local officials from around the United States.  "Producers in Southern Colorado have some of the finest products available for export, and I view this as an opportunity to encourage exports from Southern Colorado and the entire state", Navarro said.
 
Navarro went on to state, "I believe we have international opportunities to improve economics in this great state, I am going to be so proud to talk about things like Rocky Ford melons and Pueblo Chiles...and that's just the start.  I'm very proud to represent Southern Colorado at the Capitol, and this is an honor to represent business and industry of Colorado on this mission."
 
China is one of the United States biggest markets for exports.  This mission is part of an effort by the China United States Exchange Foundation (CUSEF).  Allen Wong, Executive Director of CUSEF stated, "CUSEF is honored and privileged to host such a distinguished group of political leaders from the United States to visit China. U.S.-China relations are the most important bilateral relations in the world, and CUSEF is committed to facilitating better understanding of our two peoples. We have great expectations that this delegation, through their personal experience gained from this trip and their respective leadership positions, will make significant contributions toward the betterment of that relationship.”
 
Members of the delegation also include: Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch (R-WI), Senator-Elect Cyrus Habib (D-WA-48), State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R-NY-64), Commissioner Bridget Gainer (D-Cook County-10, IL), Mayor Michael Copeland (R-Olathe, KS) and Treasurer Tishaura Jones (D-St. Louis, MO).
 
FOR MORE INFORMATION ON CUSEF:  www.cusef.org.hk/
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