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s_agr_2016a_2016-03-10t13:32:00z1 Hearing Summary

Date: 03/10/2016



Final

BILL SUMMARY for SB16-097



SENATE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, NATURAL RESOURCES, & ENERGY


Votes: View--> Action Taken:
Amendment L.002. This amendment was withdrawn.







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.




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