Eye on the Legislature

House Bill 18-1187:  The requirements of the marijuana industry seem never ending. HB 1187 involves Food and Drug Administration approved cannabidiol drug use, a cannabis compound that may have medical benefits for certain conditions without the psychoactivity caused by tetraghydrocannabinol (THC). To date, the FDA has not approved a marketing application for marijuana for any indication.

HB 1187 clarifies the FDA approval of a prescription drug containing cannabidiol makes the following activities lawful in Colorado:

  • prescribing an appropriate dosage of the drug;
  • dispensing a valid prescription;
  • possessing and transporting the drug; and
  • using the prescription.

  Marijuana permitted under the Colorado constitution or state statutes is not affected by HB 1187, but it does “require state agencies to perform rule-making to implement the bill where applicable.”

Sponsors of House Bill 18-1187:  Representatives Janet P. Buckner (D-Arapaho) 866-2944 and Lois Landgraf (R-El Paso) 866-2946; and Senators John Cooke (R-Weld) 866-4451 and Dominick Moreno (D-Adams) 866-4857.

House Bill 18-1271: Congress is generous with its corporate welfare programs, but the state of Colorado is not far behind. HB 1271 declares that it is in the public interest to allow public utilities to offer economic development rates set forth in the bill.

The basis for HB 1271:

  • the health, safety and welfare of the people of our state are dependent upon the continued development and expansion of opportunities for employment in Colorado;
  • cost of electricity is an important consideration for private-sector businesses when deciding to locate or expand operations in Colorado, and an equally important consideration for many businesses in making these economic decisions in identifying states that allow for the customer’s achievement of sustainability and other energy and environmental goals; and
  • electric utilities should be able to offer rates and programs that help attract these businesses and provide incentives for the expansion of existing business operations, thus helping to stimulate further economic development in Colorado.

   The fiscal impact analysis does point out that “To qualify for these rates, customers must demonstrate that electricity cost is critical to their decision about where to locate or expand their business, and must add at least 3 megawatts of new load at a single location.

The program does have these requirements – an investor-owned electric utility is authorized by the bill to seek PUC approval and expand a voluntary renewable energy program to meet the current or projected demand of a commercial or industrial customer who also meets the following:

  • makes a capital investment in Colorado of at least $250 million;
  • requires the expansion in order to remain as a customer of the utility; or
  • is a new customer of the utility.

   Important to the corporate types, “The bill specifies that utilities shall not cross-subsidize economic development rates by raising rates on other customers, with the utility bearing the burden of proof in any PUC proceeding on this issue.

Sponsors of House Bill 18-1271:  Representatives  Matt Gray (D-Boulder, Broomfield  866-4667 and Yeulin Willett (R-Delta, Mesa) 866-2583; and Senator Jack Tate (R-Arapaho) 866-4883.

House Bill 17-1283:  When improvements on a property with residential classification for land are destroyed, demolished or relocated, the land can retain a residential classification if the county assessor determines the owner intends to rebuild or locate a residential improvement on the land.

HB 1283 provides that under the following events, the residential land classification must change:

  • a new residential improvement or part of a new residential improvement is not constructed or placed on the land prior to January 1, after the two year period identified in this bill;
  • the county assessor determines the classification of the land at the time of the destruction, demolition or relocation was incorrectly classified; or
  • a change of use has occurred.

   For readers unfamiliar with Colorado assessments, under current law, property taxes are paid on a portion of the actual value of the property called the assessed value. Assessed value is based on either the residential or non-residential classification of the land as determined by the land’s physical status and use.

Sponsors of House Bill 18-1283:  Representative Adrienne Benavidez (D-Adams) 866-2964;and Senator Tim Neville (R-Boulder, Denver, Gilpin, Jefferson) 866-4873. 

The reader's comments or questions are always welcome. E-mail me at doris@dorisbeaver.com.