Job-Killing Business Tax
Business Tax Relief
Education Tax Credits
School Choice Bill
2003 Town Hall
The 2003 legislative session was a huge success, and I would like to take this brief opportunity to discuss some of the progress we made on issues important to the citizens of Colorado.
This session, I specifically worked on legislation that limits big government and excessive taxation, protects Colorado families, and improves education in our state.
During our 120-day session, I sponsored legislation to eliminate an onerous tax on small businesses and promote economic development in this tough economy. As the prime sponsor of Senate Bill 244 and the Senate sponsor of House Bill 1309, I worked hard to try and persuade my fellow legislators to eliminate the business personal property tax. Although many of my colleagues wanted to abandon this tax, revenue pressures stalled the bill in the Appropriations Committee this year.
SB 30 was passed by the Legislature to disclose the average taxes paid on the tax form or the Internet. Tax averages and reductions in the '90s, I believe, gave us that vibrant economy in the last decade.
As a strong advocate on education issues, it was pleasing to see a good deal of progress made this session. I strongly supported a bill that creates the nation's most sweeping voucher pilot program, helping low-income students in underachieving school districts. That bill passed the Legislature and was signed into law by Gov. Bill Owens. I was also proud to sponsor another important piece of education legislation, SB 326. That bill bolsters funding for public libraries and includes Internet protections on library computers. SB 326 passed the Legislature and was signed by the governor. I also sponsored two resolutions that passed, dealing with Home Education Week and Read Across America Day.
The Legislature passed a parental notification bill I carried, HB 1376 that requires underage girls to notify their parents before terminating a pregnancy. The issue was passed by voters in 1998, but a portion of it was overturned by the courts. The legislation we passed addressed issues cited by the court, and it passed both chambers of the General Assembly.
Finally, three additional bills I sponsored were signed into law by Gov. Bill Owens. House Bill 1251 creates the Colorado Auto Theft Prevention Authority, HB 1221sets standards for accessible housing and HB 1216 deals with driving school vehicle equipment.