Gov. John Hickenlooper said Friday he will not call a special session of the Colorado legislature to address transportation funding, despite his frustration with a lack of sufficient progress on the issue at the statehouse this year.
“The political landscape hasn’t shifted,” Hickenlooper said at a news conference.
The announcement put to rest a week of speculation on whether he would call lawmakers back to the statehouse.
The day after the legislative session ended, Hickenlooper announced he was considering calling a special session to deal with a slew of unfinished business.
He said lawmakers didn’t do enough to fund transportation, and chastised the state Senate for sending a series of health care reform measures to the so-called “kill committee.” He also blamed both sides for their failure to salvage the Colorado Energy Office from its statutory expiration date.
Transportation advocates, in particular, have been pushing Hickenlooper to call lawmakers back to the negotiating table, after a bipartisan effort to raise sales taxes for roads fell apart late in the session.
But the idea landed with a thud at the Capitol, among Republicans in particular.
“Waiting for the Governor” #coleg #copoliticshttps://t.co/QmEBqeLiiu
— Pres. Kvn J Grantham (@SenatorGrantham) May 18, 2017
During the session that ended last week, Senate Republicans killed a measure — sponsored by a bipartisan coalition of legislative leaders and supported by the governor — that would have asked voters for a 0.5 percentage-point increase in the state sales tax. It could have generated $3.5 billion for roads.
Legislators passed a far-reaching spending measure that included raising $1.9 billion for roads by mortgaging state buildings.
A separate, Republican effort to issue $3.5 billion in bonds for transportation projects, funded by existing sales tax revenues, appeared in multiple versions, none of which survived.
There are several initiatives in the …read more
Source:: The Denver Post – Politics