Capitol Update – March 8, 2013

Written by: Tara Manthey
Date Posted: March 8, 2013

  1. ASSET Bill
    The Colorado House of Representatives voted 40-21 with bipartisan support today to approve Senate Bill 13-033 (Johnston and Giron/Williams and Duran), Colorado’s public colleges and universities, regardless of citizenship. The bill is headed to Gov. John Hickenlooper for his signature. Advocates celebrated today after working for 10 years to pass the legislation. Read more about the history of this historic legislation from our partners at Padres y Jovenes Unidos
  2. SB-200 Medicaid Expansion Introduced
    On Friday, March 1, Sen. Irene Aguilar introduced legislation to make adults with incomes up to 133 percent of the Federal poverty level—about $31,000 for a family of four—eligible for Medicaid. Senate Bill 200 will make a meaningful difference in the lives of Colorado kids without creating new eligibility in Medicaid for children, as we already cover kids to that income level. SB 200 will reduce the number of uninsured kids in Colorado and improve quality and continuity of care for children in Medicaid by helping connect already eligible kids to coverage and implementing a policy of 12 months continuous eligibility in Medicaid for children. Ensuring kids get the care they need, when they need it isn’t asking too much. Click here for a fact sheet on why Medicaid expansion for adults is good for kids.
  3. School Breakfast After the Bell
    House Bill 13-1006 (Moreno and Exum/Giron) also won bipartisan support this week, as the House Appropriations Committee gave 12-1 approval to send the bill to the House floor. The bill would support healthy development and student achievement by extending the School Breakfast After the Bell Nutrition Program to more schools with high populations of low-income students. Click here to download a fact sheet in English and Spanish or to access a helpful infographic.
  4. Supplemental Online Education Services
    Children’s Campaign Government Affairs Director Dan O’Connell testified in support this week of SB 13-139 (Roberts/Coram). This bill would strengthen supplemental and online education services by driving both greater access and quality in our statewide supplemental online program. The bill establishes a more robust request for proposal process and enhances collaboration between the Colorado Department of Education’s Online and Blended Learning Office and the Board of Cooperative Educational Services (BOCES) designated to administer Colorado’s statewide supplemental online program. This bill would also encourage information sharing, professional development and best practices throughout the state to ensure a continued focus on the increased affordability, quality, and student access for Colorado’s supplemental online program. A committee vote is expected next week.
  5. School Finance Bill Ready to be Introduced
    Sen. Mike Johnston’s proposed overhaul of the state School Finance Act stands ready to be introduced at the legislature, as early as this afternoon at the time of Kids Flash publication. The bill would be the first significant change in the way we allocate education funds in nearly 20 years. It would create a more equitable, sustainable and efficient education system and ensure all Colorado children are prepared to excel in school, college, careers and life. To learn more about the bill, please visit Sen. Johnston’s website. Stay tuned to the Children’s Campaign for updates as the bill moves through the process.
Tara Manthey

About Tara Manthey

Tara McLain Manthey joined Colorado Children's Campaign as Communications Director in May 2012. She previously worked in communications at The Kempe Foundation for the Prevention and Treatment of Child Abuse and Neglect in Aurora and Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families in Little Rock, Ark. Tara was a newspaper reporter covering education and government for nine years in Oregon, Washington state and Arkansas. A native of the Colorado mountain region and an alumna of the University of Colorado at Boulder, Tara lives in Denver with her husband and two small children.