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H_AGR_2017A 04/10/2017 01:30 PM Committee Summary

Final

STAFF SUMMARY OF MEETING



HOUSE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, LIVESTOCK, & NATURAL RESOURCES

Date: 04/10/2017
ATTENDANCE
Time: 01:34 PM to 06:05 PM
Becker J.
X
Buck
X
Place: HCR 0107
Catlin
X
Esgar
X
This Meeting was called to order by
Hansen
X
Representative Arndt
Lebsock
X
Lewis
X
This Report was prepared by
McKean
*
Meghan O'Connor
Singer
X
Valdez
X
Willett
X
Mitsch Bush
X
Arndt
X
X = Present, E = Excused, A = Absent, * = Present after roll call
Bills Addressed: Action Taken:
SJR17-013

HB17-1282

HB17-1289

SB17-117
Referred to the Committee of the Whole

Amended, Referred to the Committee of the Whole

Laid Over

Laid Over



01:36 PM -- SJR 17-013



Representative Catlin, sponsor, presented Senate Joint Resolution 17-013, concerning the encouragement of stakeholder input with subsequent legislative review prior to the implementation of additional nutrient discharge controls.



01:41 PM -- Dianna Orf, Colorado Water Congress, spoke in support of the resolution. Ms. Orf discussed nutrient regulations and the cost of maintaining those requirements in treatment plants. She discussed the cost of the treatment of nutrients and impending rule-making from the Water Quality Control Commission. She also discussed the lack of a federal nutrient standard. Ms. Orf responded to questions from the committee regarding effective treatment standards.





01:51 PM



The chair closed the testimony phase, and Representative Catlin made closing comments on the resolution. Committee discussion ensued.

BILL: SJR17-013
TIME: 01:55:14 PM
MOVED: Becker J.
MOTION: Refer SJR17-013 to the Full House of Representatives. The motion passed on a vote of 7-6.
SECONDED: McKean
VOTE
Becker J.
Yes
Buck
Yes
Catlin
Yes
Esgar
No
Hansen
No
Lebsock
No
Lewis
Yes
McKean
Yes
Singer
No
Valdez
Yes
Willett
Yes
Mitsch Bush
No
Arndt
No
Final YES: 7 NO: 6 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS



01:59 PM -- HB 17-1282



Representative Ginal, sponsor, presented House Bill 17-1282, concerning the creation of a veterinary education loan repayment program to assist veterinarians with education loan repayments in exchange for providing veterinary services in rural areas of the state in need of veterinary services. Representative Ginal distributed a handout (Attachment A) and Amendment L.001 (Attachment B). The introduced version of the bill creates the veterinary education loan repayment program in the Department of Agriculture (CDA) as a Type 2 transfer. The program provides financial incentives trough education loan repayment to licensed veterinarians to practice in areas with a shortage of veterinarians. The bill also creates the Veterinary Education Loan Repayment Council to administer the loan repayment program and sets the membership and appointment procedures for the council. Up to four applicants may be selected annually to participate in the program. The bill specifies the eligibility criteria and the factors that the council must consider in evaluating applications. The bill also creates the Veterinary Education Loan Repayment Fund and moneys in the fund are continuously appropriated. Amendment L.001 instead creates the program and council within Colorado State University (CSU) College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and requires that a representative of CDA serve on the council. The amendment removes the expenditures required by CDA for the program, and increases the workload of CDA by a minimal amount to have a representative serve on the council. The Amendment would minimally increase workload and costs for CSU if funding is secured for the program.



170410 AttachA.pdf170410 AttachA.pdf170410 AttachB.pdf170410 AttachB.pdf







02:13 PM



Representative Ginal responded to questions about the bill as it would be amended by Amendment L.001, the limitation on the number of applicants that can be selected for the program, and how the areas that have veterinary shortages will be determined.



The following persons testified on the bill:



02:17 PM --
Dr. Mark Stetter, Dean, CSU College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, testified in support of the bill and discussed the need for livestock veterinarians in rural areas. Dr. Stetter responded to questions from the committee regarding the limitation on applicants annually and the sources of funding for the program, which can include gifts, grants, and donations.



02:23 PM --
Dr. Ashley Stokes, CSU, testified in support of the bill and discussed access to veterinary care in rural areas and the salaries of veterinarians in rural areas. Dr. Stokes responded to questions from the committee concerning the involvement of CDA in the program.



02:32 PM --
Chad Jones, Financial Advisor to students, CSU, testified in support of the bill and discussed loan repayment for veterinarian students and career opportunities for recent graduates. Mr. Jones responded to questions from the committee regarding the number of graduates from the school and the approximate number of students that may be interested in applying to the program. Mr. Jones explained that most students who focus on large animal practice choose to work in rural areas.



02:42 PM



Dr. Stokes clarified for the committee that there are currently 70 students who are choosing to focus on livestock practice and would like to work in rural areas. Dr. Stokes explained that the trends that the admission office is seeing reflect an increased interest in focusing their practices on livestock and living in rural areas.



02:48 PM --
Keith Roehr, Colorado Department of Agriculture, testified in support of the bill and discussed the department's collaboration with CSU. Dr. Roehr explained why allowing up to four applicants is necessary. Dr. Roehr responded to questions from the committee regarding the level of involvement by CDA in administering the program and why it is necessary for CSU to take over the administration from the department.



02:56 PM --
Danny Williams, Colorado Cattleman's Association, testified in support of the bill and discussed the importance of having the membership of the council set in statute.



02:59 PM --
Dr. Sam Romano, Colorado Veterinary Medical Association, testified in support of the bill.



03:01 PM --
Emily Ibach, Colorado Farm Bureau, testified in support of the bill.



03:02 PM -- Dr. Lora Bledsoe, CVMA, testified in support of the bill and discussed her experience with loan repayment. Dr. Bledsoe responded to questions from the committee regarding the percentage of her practice that is focused on large animals and livestock.



03:08 PM



Representative Ginal discussed Amendment L.001.













03:11 PM



Jennifer Berman, Office of Legislative Legal Services, responded to questions from the committee regarding the definition of "rural" in the bill and the creation of the Veterinary Education Loan Repayment Fund.

BILL: HB17-1282
TIME: 03:12:51 PM
MOVED: Esgar
MOTION: Adopt amendment L.001. The motion passed without objection.
SECONDED: Hansen
VOTE
Becker J.
Buck
Catlin
Esgar
Hansen
Lebsock
Lewis
McKean
Singer
Valdez
Willett
Mitsch Bush
Arndt
YES: 0 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: Pass Without Objection







03:15 PM



Representative Ginal made closing comments on the bill.

BILL: HB17-1282
TIME: 03:16:45 PM
MOVED: Esgar
MOTION: Refer House Bill 17-1282, as amended, to the Committee of the Whole. The motion passed on a vote of 10-3.
SECONDED: Hansen
VOTE
Becker J.
Yes
Buck
No
Catlin
Yes
Esgar
Yes
Hansen
Yes
Lebsock
Yes
Lewis
No
McKean
No
Singer
Yes
Valdez
Yes
Willett
Yes
Mitsch Bush
Yes
Arndt
Yes
Final YES: 10 NO: 3 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS



03:17 PM



The committee recessed.



03:28 PM -- HB 17-1289



The committee came back to order. Representatives Hansen and Valdez, co-prime sponsors, presented House Bill 17-1289, concerning a requirement that the state engineer promulgate rules that establish an optional streamlined approach to calculate the historical consumptive use of a water right. Under current law, if the owner of a water right brings an action to change the amount of water the owner may use, the amount of water that can be changed is limited to the historical consumptive use of the water under the right. The bill directs the State Engineer in the Division of Water Resources (DWR) to adopt rules taking into account local conditions that an applicant can use to calculate the historical consumptive use of a water right. The use of the methodology, approach, or local factors developed by the State Engineer is voluntary, and the resulting calculation of historical consumptive use carries no presumptive effect in the determination by the State Engineer, water referee, or water judge.





03:33 PM --
Kevin Rein, Deputy State Engineer, DWR, testified in support of the bill and distributed a handout that explains the concept of change of use and points out key components of the bill (Attachment C). Mr. Rein explained how historical consumptive use and a return flow within a water diversion are calculated. Mr. Rein explained how the office of the State Engineer would develop rules that established the streamlined approach to calculate historical consumptive use. Mr. Rein explained that a technical platform with objective data will be combined with methodology to calculate the efficiency ranges. Mr. Rein responded to questions from the committee regarding the methodology of calculating historical consumptive use and how that calculation would vary among the basins throughout the state. Mr. Rein explained that using the streamlined methodology that is used in the Lower Arkansas Basin would be different in other basins.



170410 AttachC.pdf170410 AttachC.pdf



03:45 PM



Mr. Rein continued to respond to questions from the committee regarding the lease fallowing tool currently being used in the Arkansas River Basin, and how DWR would implement the lease fallowing tool in the South Platte and the Rio Grande River Basins in order to begin collecting data for using the new methodology being used to calculate historical consumptive use. Mr. Rein explained that using the methodology should be collaborative among all water users.



03:54 PM --
Dr. John Stulp, Water Policy Advisor for the Governor, testified in support of the bill and discussed alternative transfer methods and how they can effect water users' historical consumptive use. Dr. Stulp discussed the pilot program in the Arkansas River Basin and how the lease fallowing tool in place has impacted the historical consumptive use calculations for water users.



04:02 PM --
Jay Winner, Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District, testified in support of the bill and discussed the lease fallowing tool being used in the Arkansas River Basin and the benefits of the program for farmers. Mr. Winner responded to questions from the committee regarding the lease fallowing tool.



04:09 PM --
Joan Green, Water Rights Association of the South Platte, testified in opposition to the bill and discussed how the program would affect water users on the South Platte. Ms. Green responded to questions from the committee.



04:20 PM --
Kelli Kelty, the Nature Conservancy, testified in support of the bill.



04:21 PM --
Phillip Chavez, Diamond A. Farms, testified in support of the bill. Mr. Chavez responded to questions from the committee.



04:25 PM



The committee recessed.



04:27 PM



The committee came back to order. Representative Arndt stated that the bill would be laid over until Monday, April 17, 2017, for action only.













04:28 PM -- SB 17-117



Representatives Valdez and Catlin, co-prime sponsors, presented Senate Bill 17-117, concerning confirmation that industrial hemp is a recognized agricultural water right for which a person with a water right decreed for agricultural use may use the water subject to the water right for industrial hemp cultivation. In Colorado, water subject to a water right may be used for the purpose for which the water is decreed. The bill confirms that a person with an absolute or conditional water right decreed for agricultural use may use the water subject to the water right for the growth or cultivation of industrial hemp. Representatives Valdez and Catlin responded to questions from the committee.



The following persons testified on the bill:



04:54 PM --
Phillip Chavez, Diamond A. Farms, testified in support of the bill. Mr. Chavez responded to questions from the committee.



05:06 PM --
Emily Brummit, Colorado Water Congress, testified in opposition to the bill and distributed a copy of comments from CWC to the committee (Attachment D).



170410 AttachD.pdf170410 AttachD.pdf



05:11 PM --
Jay Winner, Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District, testified in support of the bill and responded to questions from the committee.



05:14 PM --
Samantha Walsh, National Hemp Association, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Walsh responded to questions from the committee.



05:19 PM --
Garin Vorthmann, Colorado Farm Bureau, testified in opposition to the bill and distributed Order 2015-01 from the State Engineer's Office, concerning the administration of water rights that are decreed for irrigation purposes (Attachment E) and a letter from the Bureau of Reclamation, which states that the Bureau will not approve use of Bureau facilities or water in the cultivation of marijuana (Attachment F). Ms. Vorthmann responded to questions from the committee.



170410 AttachE.pdf170410 AttachE.pdf170410 AttachF.pdf170410 AttachF.pdf



05:28 PM --
David Bush, Hoben Law Group, testified in support of the bill and responded to questions from the committee.



05:44 PM --
Lee Miller, Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District, testified in opposition to the bill and discussed the Frying Arkansas Project, which is a federal project. Mr. Lee discussed the directive letter from the Bureau of Reclamation. Committee discussion ensued.



06:05 PM



Representative Arndt laid the bill over until Monday, April 17, 2017, for action only.



06:05 PM



The committee adjourned.




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