Democratic leadership. No matter the issue, whether it was hospital provider fee or construction defects or transportation, we heard story after story about Democratic leadership failing to negotiate in good faith. This system only works if people can forge relationships in order to get legislation passed. If Republicans can’t trust Democrats to stay true to their word, great things cannot happen. Shame on Democrats for not negotiating in good faith.
Construction defects reform. Something passed, but is the watered-down version better than nothing? Probably not. Common sense measures such as binding arbitration and the right for builders to fix alleged defects were never seriously considered. In fact, out of six bills related to the state’s burdensome construction defects legislation, just one passed and was sent to the Governor’s desk for signature. There’s still no scheduled date for him to sign it. If it is signed into law, the most likely result of this is that it may remain too risky and expensive to build condos and Colorado, and much needed new condo construction will continue to be the exception, not the rule.
People who hate the smell of pot. The legislature was supposed to put a sharper point on defining the open and conspicuous consumption of marijuana. Doing so would have put an end to large groups of people smoking weed on a front porch (and “smoking out” their neighbors). Lawmakers were not able to agree on a definition in the final hours of the session.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife. This government agency tried to shove a fee hike down the throats of Coloradans at the 11th hour. Thanks to the efforts of activist groups like Compass Colorado, this money grab was opened for hunting season and Republicans took aim. If the organization needs more money, they should probably start the stakeholder engagement process now, not at the end of a legislative session.
Colorado drivers. While we applauded the fact that the sales tax increase to fund transportation infrastructure failed in the legislature this session, we had hoped that the legislature would find a way to prioritize $500 million for transportation bonds. Instead, because of Democrats’ our way or the highway tactics, Coloradans received one-fifth of the $500 million necessary. We were disappointed and so were the rest of Colorado drivers who were hoping for a fix to our state’s transportation woes.
Andy Kerr. Ok, this one didn’t happen under the Gold Dome, but it did happen during the legislative session. Sen. Andy Kerr has been suing Colorado taxpayers for more of their tax dollars for the past few years. The suit failed spectacularly, fortunately. Also, fortunately, Kerr is on record as the named party in this attempt to part Coloradans from their hard-earned money. Welcome to 2018.
Democrats running for higher office. Regardless of the issue, regardless of the chamber, over and over again, Democratic leadership forced votes on far left issues that will come back to haunt candidates like Kerr and State Rep. Brittany Pettersen, who are vying in a Democratic primary for U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter’s seat.
Joe Salazar. Salazar is the perpetual loser in the state legislature. His legislation this year was all soundbite friendly crap like getting rid of Columbus Day. We cannot wait for his party’s leadership to metaphorically gut him like a fish in the Democratic primary for Colorado Attorney General. See: Phil Weiser. If, by some Bernie miracle, Salazar gets through the primary, we can’t wait to run someone against him.