2020 Legislative Priorities

Date Posted: January 3, 2020

Intro

The Colorado Children’s Campaign serves as the leading voice for kids at the state Capitol and in communities across the state. In our 35-year history we’ve worked with policy makers from every corner of the state and every political perspective to improve the well-being of Colorado kids. Children’s issues aren’t partisan, and we’ve proven that we can develop innovative solutions when we work together.

As the 2020 session of the Colorado General Assembly begins, we’ve prepared the best available data and research on child well-being to help advocates and policy makers advance—and protect—policies and investments that remove barriers for kids and families.

 Priorities

Child Health Priorities

  • Family Planning Investment: Colorado’s Family Planning Program is a long-standing, effective program that is poised to serve more women, especially in the rural areas of the state. Investing in this program supports the health and well-being of women and their children.
  • Perinatal Depression Support: Mood and anxiety disorders are the most common complication of pregnancy and early motherhood—and can be caught with frequent check-ins with medical providers. Aligning the number of screenings allowed under a child’s Medicaid benefit with national best practices would support families with low incomes in this critical time.

K-12 Education Priorities

  • Fair Local Share for K-12 Establishing a uniform mill levy for property owners would fix an unintended consequence of Colorado’s inflexible tax system. It would ensure the quality of a child’s education and the resources that schools can access don’t depend on where a child lives. The majority of taxpayers will see little or no increase in property taxes. For more information, visit FairShareforK12.co.

Early Childhood Priorities

  • Workforce Education and Career Pathways: Colorado’s working parents can’t get to work without early childhood educators. Improving career and education pathways for these high-demand jobs will catapult qualified, aspiring early childhood educators into classrooms by streamlining licensing, providing scholarships and grants, and establishing an apprentice program.
  • Mental Health Consultation: The foundation of mental wellness is established in the early years of life. We can ensure that the many providers and caregivers that work with children have the support they need to foster healthy young minds and promote social and emotional well-being.
  • Educator Tax Credit Technical Fix: A technical change to correct a drafting error will allow a bipartisan bill passed in 2019 to establish an early childhood educator tax credit to go into effect.
  • Expanding Access to Early Care and Education: This year’s budget must include increased investments in the Colorado Preschool Program and the Colorado Child Care Assistance Program to keep our state’s economy thriving and to ensure young children have access to high quality early learning experiences.

Budget Priorities

  • Helping Families Access Federal Income Support: For families with incomes significantly below the poverty line, Basic Cash Assistance helps decrease the stress of making ends meet. Adjusting this program for inflation would support families and reduce extreme childhood poverty, which has a lifelong impact on child well-being.