The 2020 Colorado legislative session began on Wednesday, January 8 and will run through May 6. During the session, our legislative subcommittee collectively reviews every bill introduced to evaluate which may affect the architecture profession. After the first week, we’ve already seen to over 270 bills (out of an estimated 600-700 total by the end of the session).
2020 is the second year of our state’s legislative cycle, meaning that (most) every legislator is in at least their second session. Democratic legislators in 2019 had lofty goals but met with effective procedural resistance by Republicans. The 2020 state budget has significantly less money available for new expenditures than last year. This combination of factors means that it will be more difficult for legislators on both sides of the aisle to deliver on big promises made leading up to the 2018 elections.
We’re still seeing some trends of interest to the architecture profession though. Mental health issues are a big topic in multiple ways, including SB20-023: Colorado Working Group On School Safety. AIA Colorado is actively working to bring the voice of the architecture profession into this effort. There are already seven workforce development bills targeting high schools and colleges. While these may not directly affect architects, a positive result could be more students entering the construction industry to address the current labor shortfalls in the state. Sustainability is another hot topic, with a focus this year on carbon reduction and wildfire mitigation.
If you see any bills in the news that affect you or your business, please contact Nikolaus Remus to learn more or to get involved in our advocacy efforts directly.