Do Coloradans really save money? Lawmakers recap 2022 legislative session
DENVER (KDVR) — The 2022 legislative session ended this week with dozens of bills rushing through the Capitol. But with historically high inflation and prices, will these new bills and laws help your wallet?
The theme for Gov. Jared Polis and Democrats in the legislature this session was saving money in the Colorados.
Democrats said they achieved that goal and also helped people make money now by paying income tax refunds early. But Republicans said Democrats were pulling a bait and switch.
“The TABOR refund checks that are going back a year earlier are now $1,000 per couple,” said Sen. Chris Hansen, D-Arapahoe and Denver. “The property tax is going to provide several hundred dollars of relief to every property owner in the state as well as relief to commercial businesses. So I think we’ve really delivered on that promise.
“My head is still spinning a bit to see the Democrats doing a 180 celebrating TABOR,” said Rep. Colin Larsen, R-Jefferson. “I’m glad they’re finally on board and welcome to the party. But it’s a bit of a lot of smoke and mirrors and not a lot of substance.
We also asked lawmakers about this highly controversial bill to fight fentanyl in Colorado.
The final version of the fentanyl bill now makes it a crime to possess 1 gram or more of the deadly drug. But it also allows those arrested for possession to prove at trial that they did not know they had fentanyl mixed with other drugs.
“I think we’re putting the necessary tools in the hands of law enforcement and district attorneys,” Hansen said. “I have spoken extensively with ADs across the state as we work on this bill. I think we have come to a great place.
“I think you have to take a holistic view. When you’re trying to deal with this complicated crisis, you can’t just focus on harm reduction and addiction treatment,” Larsen said. “It’s an important part, but we need those effective law enforcement tools and those just weren’t there in this final bill.”
You can watch our full discussion of the 2022 legislative session this Sunday at 7:30 a.m. on Colorado’s Channel 2.
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