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S_AGR_2016A 03/10/2016 01:32:00 PM Committee Summary

Final

STAFF SUMMARY OF MEETING



SENATE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, NATURAL RESOURCES, & ENERGY

Date: 03/10/2016
ATTENDANCE
Time: 01:32 PM to 04:51 PM
Baumgardner
X
Cooke
X
Place: LSB B
Donovan
X
Garcia
X
This Meeting was called to order by
Hodge
X
Senator Sonnenberg
Jones
X
Scott
X
This Report was prepared by
Roberts
X
David Beaujon
Sonnenberg
X
X = Present, E = Excused, A = Absent, * = Present after roll call
Bills Addressed: Action Taken:
HB16-1170

SB16-097

HB16-1120

SB16-061
Referred to the Committee of the Whole - Consent Calendar

Witness Testimony and/or Committee Discussion Only

Witness Testimony and/or Committee Discussion Only

Amended, Referred to Appropriations





01:33 PM -- HB 16-1170



Senator Sonnenberg and Senator Garcia, co-prime sponsors, discussed the provisions of HB 16-1170 that continues the Division of Racing Events and the Colorado Racing Commission within the Department of Revenue (DOR) from July 1, 2016, until September 1, 2023. The commission regulates horse and greyhound racing where parimutuel betting occurs by licensing facilities and employees, and promulgating rules. The division is charged with supervising the conduct of racing in Colorado, issuing business and occupational licenses on behalf of the commission, advising the commission, and enforcing the laws governing racing. A board of stewards, made up of two stewards employed by the division and one steward employed by the racetrack, assists with supervising the conduct of every race meet.



The following person testified on the bill:



01:35 PM --
Danny Williams, Mile High Racing and Entertainment, spoke in support of the bill.





01:38 PM



The chair closed testimony and Senator Sonnenberg and Senator Garcia closed their remarks on the bill.

BILL: HB16-1170
TIME: 01:38:17 PM
MOVED: Garcia
MOTION: Refer House Bill 16-1170 to the Committee of the Whole with a recommendation that it be placed on the consent calendar. The motion passed on a vote of 9-0.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Baumgardner
Yes
Cooke
Yes
Donovan
Yes
Garcia
Yes
Hodge
Yes
Jones
Yes
Scott
Yes
Roberts
Yes
Sonnenberg
Yes
Final YES: 9 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS



01:40 PM -- SB 16-097



Senator Scott, Prime Sponsor, described the provisions of SB 16-097 concerning the use of mineral severance revenue for local governments. He also distributed Amendment L.002 (Attachment A). This bill places restrictions on transferring money from various mineral related cash funds to the General Fund. Specifically, the bill prohibits transfers to the General Fund from the following cash funds (collectively referred to in the bill as the mineral severance fund): the Higher Education Federal Mineral Lease Revenues Fund; the Higher Education Maintenance and Reserve Fund; the Local Government Permanent Fund; the Local Government Mineral Impact Fund; and the Local Government Severance Tax Fund. The bill prohibits the Governor from restricting the use of money in any of these funds to save money for a future transfer to the General Fund. The bill also limits the Governor's and the Joint Budget Committee's ability to use money in these funds for purposes not authorized in current law or that does not benefit the political subdivisions impacted by the severance of minerals. Finally, the bill changes the current allocation of the Local Government Severance Tax Fund. The proportion used for direct distributions is increased from 30 to 60 percent, while the proportion used for grants is decreased from 70 to 40 percent. The bill restricts grant eligibility to political subdivisions that received more than $200,000 in direct distributions in the prior fiscal year.



160310 AttachA.pdf160310 AttachA.pdf



Senator Scott distributed a letter of support for the bill from Christian Reece, Executive Director of CLUB 20 (Attachment B).



160310 AttachB.pdf160310 AttachB.pdf







The following persons testified on the bill:



01:44 PM --
Mark Ruzzin, Boulder County Commissioners Office, spoke in opposition to the bill and spoke in support of allowing the General Assembly to divert severance tax moneys to the General Fund during revenue shortfalls.



01:50 PM --
Ray Beck, City of Craig, spoke in support of the bill.



01:52 PM --
Rose Puglisie, Mesa County Board of County Commissioners, spoke in support of the bill and discussed budget challenges affecting counties that depend on severance tax revenue.



01:57 PM --
Larry Don Suckla, Montezuma County Board of County Commissioners, spoke in support of the bill and submitted a letter of support for the bill from the Montezuma County Board of County Commissioners (Attachment C).



160310 AttachC.pdf160310 AttachC.pdf



02:01 PM --
Barbara Kirkmeyer, Weld County Board of County Commissioners, spoke in support of the bill and spoke in opposition to proposed amendments to the bill. She also discussed budget challenges affecting counties that rely on severance tax revenue.



02:12 PM --
Kevin Bommer, Colorado Municipal League, discussed legislation from 2008 that changed how severance tax revenue is allocated to local governments and spoke in support of the bill. He also spoke in support of Amendment L.002.



02:22 PM --
Shawn Bolton, Rio Blanco County Board of County Commissioners, spoke in support of the bill and discussed budget challenges affecting counties that depend on severance tax revenue.



The following persons testified remotely from Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction:



02:26 PM --
Bonnie Petersen, Executive Director, Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado, spoke in support of the bill and Amendment L.002. She also discussed budget challenges affecting local governments that depend on severance tax revenue.



02:33 PM --
Frank Moe, Moffat County Board of County Commissioners, spoke in support of the bill and discussed budget challenges affecting local governments that depend on severance tax revenue.



02:36 PM --
Jon Hill, Rio Blanco County Board of County Commissioners, spoke in support of the bill and discussed budget challenges affecting counties that depend on severance tax revenue.



02:42 PM --
John Kincaid, Moffat County Board of County Commissioners, spoke in support of the bill and discussed budget challenges affecting counties that depend on severance tax revenue.



In-person testimony continued:



02:46 PM --
Pat Ratliff, Colorado Counties, Inc., spoke in support of the bill.





02:48 PM



The chair closed testimony and Senator Scott closed his remarks on the bill.

BILL: SB16-097
TIME: 02:48:19 PM
MOVED: Scott
MOTION: Amendment L.002. This amendment was withdrawn.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Baumgardner
Cooke
Donovan
Garcia
Hodge
Jones
Scott
Roberts
Sonnenberg
YES: 0 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION:



02:52 PM



Senator Sonnenberg distributed Amendment L.003 (Attachment D) The committee recessed to review the amendments.



160310 AttachD.pdf160310 AttachD.pdf



03:00 PM



The committee returned from recess. Senator Scott withdrew Amendment L.002 and closed his remarks on the bill.



03:04 PM



The bill was laid over unamended and tentatively scheduled for action only on March 17, 2016.



03:04 PM



The committee recessed.





03:07 PM -- HB 16-1120



The committee returned from recess. Senator Tate, prime sponsor, described the provisions of HB16-1120 concerning rabies vaccinations for dogs and cats. This bill requires that all dogs and cats four months of age and older be vaccinated against rabies. The vaccine is to be administered by a licensed veterinarian according to national standards. The veterinarian will issue a vaccination certificate, tag, and a means for attaching the tag to the animal's collar. A pet owner is required to have an animal vaccinated no later than 90 days after acquiring the animal or 90 days after the animal turns four months of age. The State Board of Health or a local health department can set more stringent requirements. The owner or lessee of agricultural land is not required by the bill to vaccinate feral cats located on the property, but may be required to do so by a county or municipality.



The following persons testified on the bill:



03:11 PM --
Jennifer House, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, discussed the health impacts of rabies, explained how it is transmitted, and explained how vaccines work. She also spoke in support of the bill.



03:14 PM --
Judy Calhoun, Colorado Federation of Animal Welfare Agencies, spoke in support of the bill. She also responded to questions from the committee about the need for the bill and the spread of rabies.



03:21 PM --
Linda Hart, Colorado Federation of Dog Clubs, spoke in support of the bill.



03:23 PM



The chair closed testimony and Senator Tate closed his remarks on the bill.



03:23 PM



The bill was laid over unamended and tentatively scheduled for action only on Thursday, March 17.



03:24 PM -- SB 16-061



Senator Cooke and Senator Sonnenberg, co-prime sponsors, described the provisions of SB16-061 concerning ratepayer protection from carbon dioxide increased cost. They also distributed Amendment L.003 (Attachment E) and Amendment L.004 (Attachment F) and the preamended bill that includes these amendments (Attachment G). This bill requires the Colorado Public Utilities Commission (PUC) in the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA) to create a Ratepayer Protection program. The program is created to address the potential increased costs of compliance with the federal Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Clean Power Plan (CPP). The program will be designed to cover these costs through reimbursement from the newly created Ratepayer Protection Fund rather than by utility customers. The fund is to be financed by annual appropriations from the existing Stationary Sources Control Fund (SSCF).



160310 AttachE.pdf160310 AttachE.pdf160310 AttachF.pdf160310 AttachF.pdf160310 AttachG.pdf160310 AttachG.pdf



The following persons testified on the bill:



03:35 PM --
Devin Bazata, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill and responded to questions from the committee about his opposition to the bill and alternative energy sources.









03:39 PM --
Martha Rudolph, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, spoke in opposition to the bill and discussed the regulation of air pollution by the Air Quality Control Division. She also spoke in opposition to Amendment L.003 and responded to questions from the committee about the department's opposition to the bill, potential impact of the CPP on ratepayers, and other issues.



03:55 PM --
J.R. Tolbert, Advanced Energy Economy, spoke in opposition to the bill and discussed the importance of Colorado's advanced energy economy. He also discussed potential cost saving of advanced energy technologies for ratepayers.



03:58 PM --
Erin Overturf, Western Resource Advocates, spoke in opposition to the bill. She also responded to questions from the committee about the cost of renewable energy, sources of air pollution in the Denver metropolitan area, the U.S. Supreme Court decision concerning the CPP, and other issues.



03:59 PM



Senator Sonnenberg distributed a November 13, 2015 Grenwire article that included comments of Governor Hickenlooper concerning the cost of complying with CCP (Attachment H).



160310 AttachH.pdf160310 AttachH.pdf



04:06 PM --
Maggie Rose, representing herself, explained that she is a student at the University of Colorado and spoke in opposition to the bill.



04:08 PM --
Anna Elise Smith, representing herself, explained that she is a student at the University of Colorado and spoke in opposition to the bill.



04:10 PM --
Susan Nedell, Environmental Entrepreneurs, spoke in opposition to the bill.



04:13 PM --
Tyler Svitak, American Lung Association, spoke in opposition to the bill and responded to questions from the committee about the health impacts of air pollutants.



04:20 PM --
Dianna Orf, Associated Governments of Northwest Colorado, spoke in support of the bill and expressed concern about the impact of CPP on ratepayers and coal producing communities. She also responded to questions from the committee about the cost of renewable energy compared to the cost of power generated using fossil fuels and the U.S. Supreme Court stay on the CPP.



04:29 PM --
Michael Sandoval, Independence Institute, spoke in support of the bill and distributed an Energy Policy Center Report on electricity rates in Colorado (Attachment I). He also responded to questions from the committee about factors affecting Colorado's electricity rates.



160310 AttachI.pdf160310 AttachI.pdf





04:37 PM



The chair closed testimony on the bill.

BILL: SB16-061
TIME: 04:38:06 PM
MOVED: Cooke
MOTION: Adopt amendment L.003. The motion passed without objection.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Baumgardner
Cooke
Donovan
Garcia
Hodge
Jones
Scott
Roberts
Sonnenberg
YES: 0 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: Pass Without Objection
BILL: SB16-061
TIME: 04:38:53 PM
MOVED: Cooke
MOTION: Adopt amendment L.004. The motion passed without objection.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Baumgardner
Cooke
Donovan
Garcia
Hodge
Jones
Scott
Roberts
Sonnenberg
YES: 0 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: Pass Without Objection





04:37 PM



Senator Sonnenberg and Senator Cooke closed their remarks on the bill. The committee also made closing comments on the bill.

BILL: SB16-061
TIME: 04:49:17 PM
MOVED: Cooke
MOTION: Refer Senate Bill 16-061, as amended, to the Committee on Appropriations. The motion passed on a vote of 5-4.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Baumgardner
Yes
Cooke
Yes
Donovan
No
Garcia
No
Hodge
No
Jones
No
Scott
Yes
Roberts
Yes
Sonnenberg
Yes
Final YES: 5 NO: 4 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS



04:51 PM



The committee adjourned.




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