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S_JUD_2018A 04/25/2018 01:39:35 PM Committee Summary

PUBLIC
STAFF SUMMARY OF MEETING
SENATE COMMITTEE ON JUDICIARY
Date 04/25/2018
Attendance
Coram X
Fields X
Kagan X
Cooke X
Gardner X
Time 01:39:35 PM to 06:53:06 PM
Place SCR 352
This Meeting was called to order by Gardner
This Report was prepared by Juliann Jenson
Hearing Items Action Taken
HB18-1314 Referred to the Committee of the Whole - Consent Calendar
SB18-240 Postponed Indefinitely
HB18-1269 Referred to the Committee of the Whole - Consent Calendar
HB18-1391 Amended, referred to Senate Appropriations

SB18-240 - Lay Over


01:39:58 PM  

Senator Gardner explained SB18-240, concerning the adoption of the "Revised Uniform Unclaimed Property Act" (RUPA).  Senator Gardner reported that the bill needs more time for additional revisions and stakeholder input.  He requested that testimony be heard on the bill before it is laid over until May 10. 

Claire Levy, representing herself and the Colorado Commission on Uniform State Laws, discussed the bill in more depth.  She explained the stakeholder process over the course of the past three years and the goal of the legislation, which is to simplify the process for finding and claiming unclaimed property.   She further discussed the Great Colorado Payback and the Unclaimed Property Division in the Office of the State Treasurer.  She guided the committee through the bill, which includes but is not limited to, intangible property, dormancy periods, remedies for holders, and security issues.  She noted that unclaimed property provisions have not been updated comprehensively since the 1980s. 

01:47:36 PM  

Garth Farrend, Audit Manager in the Colorado Department of the Treasury, discussed the role of his office and  RUPA.  He said the legislation is necessary to address technological changes, as well as to provide consistency with other state laws.  He further addressed rules for outside auditors.

01:53:36 PM  

Peter Gunn from the Colorado Department of the Treasury spoke on behalf of the bill.  He discussed RUPA and adopting it in Colorado.  He reported that additional cost savings will occur once RUPA provisions are enacted.  

01:55:12 PM  

The committee discussed the stakeholder process.  Questions also arose regarding uniform codes, generally, and the length of time involved to incorporate into state law. 

02:00:03 PM  

Jim Hall, representing the American Council of Life Insurers, spoke against the bill as written.  He expressed particular concerns about unclaimed life insurance benefits.

02:05:23 PM  

Barbara Walker, representing the Independent Bankers of Colorado, spoke in support of the bill if amended.  She discussed concerns about property, retirement and tax deferred acounts, and notices to holders.

02:08:25 PM  

Pete Kirchhof, representing various credit unions, supports the bill, generally, but would like to see a few changes before it moves forward. 

02:09:59 PM  

Melanie Layton, representing the Colorado Bankers Association, requested more time over the interim to work on the bill.  She emphasized that it is not uncommon for model laws to take years to implement.  She discussed the problems she has with the bill, as currently written, including contingency fees, interest rates not tied to the index, and appeal rights for holders. 

02:13:01 PM  

Commissioner Levy discussed the process of adopting uniform laws and the entities involved or represented.  She noted the areas where agreements have already been made.

 

Senator Gardner emphasized that the bill is a good starting point.  Senator Gardner recommended that the bill be laid over until May 10. 

 

 



HB18-1314 - Referred to the Committee of the Whole - Consent Calendar


02:21:07 PM  

Senator Cooke explained HB18-1314, concerning prohibiting the use of unmanned aircraft systems to obstruct public safety operations.

02:24:38 PM  

Chris Swathwood, representing the Colorado Aviation Business Association, spoke in support of the bill.

02:27:08 PM  

Constantin Diehl, representing UAS Colorado, spoke in support of the bill.  He discussed recreational use of drones. 

 

Committee members asked questions about the differences between knowingly and unknowingly flying a drone into an emergency situation. 

02:32:09 PM  

Captain Matt Swinden, representing the Evergreen Fire Department, testified in support of the bill.  He reiterated that the bill does not provide for an outright ban on drones and takes recreational use into consideration.

02:34:57 PM  

Bradley Applegate, representing UC Health Emergency Medical Services, spoke in favor of the measure.   He discussed the use of drones for medical air operations.

02:37:18 PM  

Commander Ron Saunier, representing the Denver Police Department, testified in support of the bill.  He discussed current limitations in responding to drones. 

02:38:54 PM  

Discussion followed regarding safety and the expanded use of drones.

02:42:02 PM  

Ben Miller, Director for the Colorado Center of Excellence for Advanced Technology Aerial Firefighting in the Department of Public Safety, spoke in favor of the bill. He discussed drones in national airspace and other technological issues.

02:45:19 PM  

Senator Cooke gave closing remarks. 



02:47:57 PM
Motion Refer House Bill 18-1314 to the Committee of the Whole and with a recommendation that it be placed on the consent calendar.
Moved Cooke
Seconded
Coram Excused
Fields Yes
Kagan Yes
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
Final YES: 4   NO: 0   EXC: 1   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS



SB18-240 - Postponed Indefinitely


02:53:49 PM  

Pursuant to Senate rules, Senator Gardner revisited SB18-240 for an official vote to lay over the bill until May 10.  



02:53:51 PM
Motion Postpone Senate Bill 18-240 indefinitely.
Moved Gardner
Seconded
Coram Excused
Fields Yes
Kagan Excused
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
Final YES: 3   NO: 0   EXC: 2   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS



HB18-1269 - Referred to the Committee of the Whole - Consent Calendar


02:53:59 PM  

Senators Fields and Hill explained HB18-1269, concerning notification to parents of charges brought against public school employees for alleged felony offenses that would result in the revocation of an educator license pursuant to Title 22, Colorado Revised Statutes.   Senator Hill referenced a specific case and emphasized that the bill adds another layer of transparency. 

 

There was no public testimony on the bill. 



02:58:21 PM
Motion Refer House Bill 18-1269 to the Committee of the Whole and with a recommendation that it be placed on the consent calendar.
Moved Fields
Seconded
Coram Yes
Fields Yes
Kagan Yes
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
Final YES: 5   NO: 0   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS



HB18-1391 - Amended, referred to Senate Appropriations

02:58:36 PM  

The committee recessed. 

 

 

 

03:14:06 PM  

The committee was called back to order. 

 

Senators Martinez Humenk and Kerr explained HB18-1391, concerning the prevention of sexual misconduct on higher education campuses.  Senator Martinez Humenik reported that the bill is the result of many months of stakeholder engagement.  She noted that the bill presents no conflicts with federal law and does not create any new layers of bureaucracy.  Senator Kerr further emphasized that the bill creates a clear and transparent process for reporting sexual assault in higher education institutions across the state.  The bill also addresses other related issues, such as retaliation, sexual history, and fairness. 

 

The following attorneys representing higher education institutions came to the table for questions:  Jeannette Gray Gilbert from Regis University; Michelle Mitz-Huchinson from Colorado School of Mines (Mines); and, Erica Weston from the University of Colorado, Boulder (CU Boulder).   They each briefly explained how their respective schools handle claims of sexual misconduct. 

 

03:19:41 PM  

Cari Simon, an attorney representing survivors of sexual assault on a national level, spoke in support of the bill.  She discussed rates of sexual assault and provided instances of students suffering a downward spiral after a sexual assault. She discussed the need for students to have equal rights in filing a claim or appeal.  She stressed that the protections in the bill are necessary.  

03:23:47 PM  

Lynn Hall, representing herself, spoke in favor of the bill.  She shared her personal story of sexual assault while in the Air Force Academy.  She explained the differences between how civilian and military higher educational systems handle sexual misconduct.  She answered questions about the preponderance of evidence standard, panels versus a single fact finder, and victims counsel. 

 

03:33:23 PM  

Patty Imhoff, representing herself, testified in support of the measure.  She told the committee about her daughter's experience while attending a university on the East Coast.  She described how hard, long, and expensive the process was through the university.

03:35:56 PM  

Michael Imhoff, representing himself, spoke in support of the measure.  He also discussed his daughter's situation and encouraged the committee to support the bill because it keeps the process more affordable and expedient.  He explained why criminal charges were not pursued in his daughter's case. 

03:42:34 PM  

Kendall Fowler, representing herself, testified in favor of the bill.  She shared a personal college experience and the difficulties of having to live in close proximity to her perpetrator.  She discussed the magnitude of the problem and urged the committee to better address the issue.

03:45:59 PM  

Jessica Higgins, representing herself, testified in support of the bill. She shared a personal college experience and discussed the barriers to reporting a sexual assault. 

03:49:50 PM  

Raana Simmons, representing the Colorado Coalition Against Sexual Assault, spoke in support of the bill.  She emphasized the need for a fundamentally fair process to address sexual misconduct.  She also discussed how sexual assault interferes with access to education.

03:54:28 PM  

John Clune, an attorney who represents victims of sex crimes at colleges, spoke in favor of the bill.  He discussed his experience with representing victims in hearings-based, investigatory models at colleges and universities.  He emphasized the need to make the process equal and not so hostile.  He discussed preponderance of the evidence versus clear and convincing evidence.  Mr. Clune also noted the small percentage of rape cases tried in the criminal justice system.  

 

The committee asked questions about the process of reporting an incident and what happens thereafter, transfer students, and removing those from campus who have the potential to re-offend.   Further discussion was had regarding cultural change, the differences between panel and investigator models, hearsay evidence, cross examinations, sexual history, and the role of the university in the adjudication process. 

04:24:06 PM  

Erica Weston from CU Boulder and Michelle Mitz-Hutchinson from Mines returned to the table for questions.   They expounded upon their respective models for handling sexual assault complaints.   CU Boulder uses two investigators for each complaint with the disposition decided by a panel model.  Mines uses an investigatory approach where the dean makes the ultimate decision regarding the violation and subsequent sanctions.  They also discussed appeals processes. 

The committee asked questions about what happens when different conclusions are drawn, time frames from the time of reporting to the pronouncement, victim rights, interface with federal law, and burden of proof.   Committee members also raised concerns about the investigation and prosecution taking place in the same office. 

04:54:33 PM  

The committee recessed. 

05:45:47 PM  

The committee was called back to order. 

 

Senators Martinez Humenik and Kerr made closing remarks.  They emphasized that the bill encourages a more streamlined reporting process and transparency, as well as reflects stakeholder agreement. 

 

Senator Gardner introduced and distributed Amendment L.005 (Attachment A) which included the option of using clear and convincing evidence as the burden of proof.  The bill sponsors disagreed with the amendment. 



05:57:54 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.005
Moved Cooke
Seconded
Coram Yes
Fields No
Kagan No
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
YES: 3   NO: 2   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS
05:57:58 PM  

Senator Gardner introduced and distributed Amendment L. 008 (Attachment B), which added the word "truthful".  Committee members expressed concerns that language in the amendment may have a chilling effect in reporting sexual assaults, as well as give the impression that the victim is not believable.  The bill sponsors did not support the amendment.



06:08:56 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.008
Moved Gardner
Seconded
Coram Yes
Fields No
Kagan No
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
YES: 3   NO: 2   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS
06:09:56 PM  

Senator Gardner distributed and explained Amendment L. 013 (Attachment C), concerning prior sexual conduct. There was no opposition to the amendment.



06:09:58 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.013
Moved Gardner
Seconded
Coram
Fields
Kagan
Cooke
Gardner
YES: 0   NO: 0   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  Pass Without Objection
06:11:48 PM  

Senator Gardner distributed and explained Amendment L. 014 (Attachment D).  Some committee members had concerns about the amendment raising the burden of proof and complicating the process.  The bill sponsors did not support the amendment.

 

 



06:28:53 PM
Motion Adopt amendment L.014
Moved Gardner
Seconded
Coram Yes
Fields No
Kagan No
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
YES: 3   NO: 2   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS
06:29:33 PM  

Senator Kerr thanked those who particpated in the process, but said that he could not support the bill as amended. He emphasized that the amendments changed the original intent of the bill.  Senator Martinez Humenik also expressed concerns about the amendments. 

Committee members made statements in support of or opposition to the bill, as amended. 

The committee took a brief recess.

 

06:29:34 PM  

The committee was called back to order. 



06:52:25 PM
Motion Refer House Bill 18-1391, as amended, to the Committee on Appropriations.
Moved Gardner
Seconded
Coram Yes
Fields Yes
Kagan No
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
Final YES: 4   NO: 1   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS


06:53:06 PM   Committee Adjourned






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