by Michael Gifford, CEO/President - AGC Colorado
One of the main reasons that construction companies belong to AGC is to be able to speak with a strong voice at the state capitol and city hall. In 2023 we know that Colorado is under one party rule, with the Democratic Party holding a near veto proof majority in the House (47-19) and Senate (23-12). AGC CEO Michael Gifford, lobbyists Jeff Weist, Laura Long and Amy Attwood, and the AGC Legislative Committee had the challenge of defending and promoting the constriction industry during the legislative session from January to May, 2023. Although the session had not yet ended for this month’s column, here are some of the highlights so far
HB23-1090 Limit Metropolitan District Director Conflicts AGC Position Oppose
This bill would have limited the ability of Metro Districts to provide critical infrastructure funding for residential, commercial and mixed use development and construction projects. AGC took a lead role in testifying and lobbying against the bill and the bill was defeated.
HB23-1115 Repeal Prohibition Local Residential Rent Control AGC Position Oppose
This bill would have repealed the current prohibition against local governments imposing rent control – including rent control on multi-family buildings. AGC felt this bill would lessen demand for new multi-family projects. AGC was part of a coalition that defeated the bill.
HB23-1118 Fair Workweek Employment Standards AGC Position Oppose
This bill would have required companies to have to give employees a non-changeable schedule in advance and compensate employees for changes in schedule. AGC helped defeat this bill.
HB23-1190 Affordable Housing Right of First Refusal AGC Position Oppose
This bill would have allowed local governments to have right of first refusal on any sale of a multi-family building, holding up the real estate transaction process. AGC worked with a coalition to amend the bill to make it less onerous. At press time this bill was still in process I the amended form.
HB23-1192 Additional Protections in Consumer Code AGC Position Oppose
This bill would have altered the Colorado Consumer Protection Act to allow for treble damages and attorney’s fees for construction defects claims. AGC tool a lead role in stripping this provision from the bill in the Senate. The bill was still in process as press time.
HB23-1215 Limits on Hospital Facility Fees AGC Position Oppose
This bill would have limited hospital’s ability to include a facility fee on hospital bills. These fees fund hospital construction projects so AGC was opposed. AGC joined a coalition of hospitals to oppose the bill and was able to amend the bill to just a study. The bill was still in process at press time.
SB23-065 Career Development Success Program AGC Position Support
AGC and Colorado Succeeds teamed up to run this bill that would reimburse high schools $1,000 per student that go though a pre-approved Career Technical Education program. AGC’s (in partnership with the HBA) Careers in Construction high school trades program is currently in 48 high schools with 2,500 students participating. High Schools will have a strong incentive to offer our program. The bill was approved in the Senate by a 32-0 vote and was working it’s way through the House at press time.
AGC will issue a 2023 Legislative Report at the end of the session so watch for that soon.