Legislative Briefs…

Budget Debate Clears House – The Colorado House of Representatives debated and approved the 2010-11 State Budget (HB10-1376) this week.  There was little controversy during the debate of the $18.2 billion budget.  The most recent revenue forecast indicated that the General Fund Revenues would increase by $389.4 million, giving a little more breathing room for the General Assembly.  The bill will now move over to the Senate.  Colorado Farm Bureau will continue to monitor the bill and especially HB 10-1377, which makes a temporary change to certain programs within the Colorado Department of Agriculture.  This bill removes General Fund money for the Inspection and Consumer Services Program and allows CDA to recoup the loss by increasing fees for two years.  Similar legislation was passed during the last economic downturn in 2002, where fees were raised for a period of 3 years.

Governor Ritter Signs SB 10-52 – Legislation that provided certainty for designated ground water wells was signed into law by Governor Bill Ritter this week.  SB10-52 clarifies legislative intent of the 1965 Ground Water Management Act creating designated groundwater basins, by providing that once final well permits are issued, the permits cannot be revoked if designated basin boundaries change.  CFB supported the legislation.

Ag Land Taxation Bill Moves Forward – The Senate State Affairs committee gave approval to HB10-1293, which establishes a 13-member interim task force to study the assessment and classification of agricultural and residential land to ensure that land is valued based on its actual use

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