Minority whip’s report details long bill, ‘good and bad’ bill hearings on tap in House this week

By BRIAN PORTER | The Rocky Mountain Voice

Final approval was looming Monday for the “Long Appropriations Bill” in the Colorado House, and Minority Whip Richard Holtorf said Saturday he would be in opposition to the proposal to increase spending by more than $2 billion.

Republicans were able to pass a few amendments “aligning with pressing needs of our constituents” to improve the spending bill, a statement in the weekend “Mighty 19 Minute” newsletter reads.

The adopted Republican amendments included $2 million for a ninth-grade success grant by Rep. Rose Pugliese, $6.1 million for senior services by Rep. Mary Bradfield, $434,783 for the Colorado Access to Justice Cash Fund by Rep. Matt Soper, $1.0 million for the Veterans Service-to-Career Program by Rep. Anthony Hartsook and Holtorf, $869,565 for the School Nurse Grant Program by Rep. Ron Weinberg and $200,000 for Department of Human Services by Rep. Brandi Bradley.

When reached Saturday, Holtorf indicated those gains weren’t enough to earn his support. The bill was supported on a party-line third reading vote, 46-18, Monday.

In other business, Holtorf detailed the following in his Whip Report:

* Rep. Gabe Evans’ House Bill 24-1284 to require a minimum bond of $7,500 for pretrial release of repeat violent crime offenders will be heard at about 10 a.m. Tuesday by the House Judiciary Committee.

* Rep. Hartsook’s HB24-1371 mandating background checks for all massage facility staff, establishing licensing authorities and barring those with certain criminal offenses from employment will be heard at about 10 a.m. Tuesday by the House’s Transportation, Housing & Local Government Committee.

* Rep. Bradley’s HB24-1247, which would increase transparency for parents of digital education materials, will be heard at 1:30 p.m. Thursday in the House Education Committee.

* Democrat Stephanie Vigil’s HB24-1040, the Gender-Affirming Health-Care Provider Study bill, will be heard by the House Health & Human Services Committee at 10 a.m. Tuesday. “If passed, this bill would potentially contribute to the harm of youth in Colorado by supporting gender-affirming treatments for minors, disregarding concerns about the long-term consequences and the need for cognitive development and coping skills in addressing gender dysphoria,” Holtorf wrote.

* Democrats Mike Weissman and Manny Rutinel’s HB24-1339, concerning measures to be taken by the air quality control commission to reduce air pollution in the state, will be heard by the House Energy & Environment Committee at 1:30 p.m. Thursday. “The bill proposes changes to the AQCC, increasing its membership to 11 members, including representation for disproportionately impacted communities and a ‘climate scientist’,” Holtorf said.


“I extend my appreciation to Rep. Rick Taggart and the members of the Joint Budget Committee for their dedicated work in shaping this budget. While we acknowledge the hard work of the initial budget proposal, I am proud to share that our team has effectively championed seven amendments, aligning with the pressing needs of our constituents.” – Minority Leader Rose Pugliese, R-Colorado Springs

“Our caucus fought to ensure the Colorado State Budget serves all Colorado, not just the metroplex. From veterans to school nurses, these amendments will help Coloradans in every corner of the state.” – Assistant Minority Leader Ty Winter, R-Trinidad).