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2015 Legislative and Issue Analyses

To view the analyses, click on More Info below the bill number or issue. All documents are in PDF format and require Adobe Acrobat for viewing.

Analyses are based on bills or issues at the time of their consideration by the Board of  Directors. Bills may change during the course of a legislative session. For the current status of these and other bills introduced in the Colorado legislature, visit the web site for the Colorado General Assembly.

Occasionally the Board of Directors also will take a position on a ballot measure. In compliance with state election law, no analyses are prepared on ballot measures that are not of official concern to the Health District.

Questions about analyses? Contact the Health District at 970-224-5209.

2015 Legislative and Issue Analyses
Bill or Issue What it concerns HD Board Action Date Considered
Repeals the Health Benefit Exchange Act and return remaining funds to the general fund. The Board of Directors voted to strongly oppose this bill. Jan. 27
Parental Bill of Rights. Adds new requirements regarding written parental consent for education, health care, and mental health providers. The Board of Directors voted to strongly oppose should the bill should it come out of the House Committee, to indicate its current opposition, and to direct staff to look for other health organizations with which to connect in opposition to the bill. Feb. 12
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State funding for the LARC Program. This bills commits state general fund dollars to the extension of a previously privately funded program to provide long acting reversible contraception (LARC) to low-income women through Title X clinics. The Board of Directors voted to strongly support this bill. Feb. 12
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Health-care delivery via telehealth statewide. This bill removes a county population restriction on the requirement that insurance carriers cover the provision of medicine via telehealth. This will make these technologically driven services more available to all patients. The Board of Directors voted to support this bill. Feb. 12
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Availability of emergency drugs for use with overdose victims. This bill allows for the distribution of opiate antagonist drugs to those at risk of overdose, their family and friends, employees and volunteers at harm reduction organizations, emergency responders, and others. The Board of Directors voted to support this bill. Feb. 12
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Allowing licensed mental health providers to treat minors. In addition to physicians and psychologists (allowed under current law), this bill will allow licensed social workers, marriage and family therapists, professional counselors, and addiction counselors to provide minors with mental health treatment without parental consent. The Board of Directors voted to support this bill. Feb. 12
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Emergency use of epinephrine auto-injectors. Permits entities, such as restaurants or organizations, to receive training on and stock epinephrine auto-injectors for emergency use during an anaphylactic episode. The Board of Directors voted to support this bill March 12
Eliminates the penalty for localities regulating cigarette sales. Removes penalty imposed on localities that opt to institute a local licensing or tax scheme for the sales of cigarettes in an effort to increase compliance with laws about sales to minors. The Board of Directors voted to support this bill March 12
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Advanced practice nurse prescriptive authority. This bill modifies the post-graduate training requirements for advanced practice nurses to gan full prescriptive authority based on the recommendations of the Nurse Physician Advisory Taskforce for Colorado Healthcare (NPATCH). The Board supports the concept of giving people access to medical care through modifying the training hour requirements for APRNS, but has concerns regarding the potential lack of direct supervision of newly graduated APRNs with prescriptive authority. March 12
PACE program flexibility. Modifies state law to allow for-profit organizations to provide PACE (Program for All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly) services, in anticipation of changes to federal rules that will expand the program to increase access. The Board of Directors voted to support this bill. March 24, 2015
Mental health parity for autism spectrum disorders. Will allow treatment for autism spectrum disorder to be treated as a mental health issue for purposes of health insurance coverage and parity laws. Services will be covered as other mental and physical health treatments, without caps or other limits allowed under current law. The Board of Directors voted to support this bill. March 24, 2015
2015-2016 Colorado Budget
Immunization and local public health funding in the state budget. Two specific funding items added to the long bill relate to the health of our community: improvements to the state immunizations information system/registry to promote provider participation and use, and additional funding for local public health agencies. The Board of Directors voted to support these budget requests in the 2015-2016 state budget. March 24, 2015
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Interim Committee on School Safety and Youth Mental Health. Creates an interim committee to study school safety, and in connection therewith mental health issues. The Board of Directors voted to support the purpose of the legislation, but to encourage an amendment that would include mental health providers on the committee and consider mental health issues separate from safety issues. April 16
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Warn Pregnant Women about Marijuana Risks. Requires marijuana retail facilities to display notifications about the potential risks fo marijuana to pregnant women. The board voted to support the bill and recommend expanding it to have retailers provide handouts, with language standardized by the state health department, listing specific information about the research on risks of marijuana use by pregnant women. April 16
Urban Redevelopment Fairness Act. Creates new requirements for increased stakeholder collaboration in the process of creating a URA plan that includes tax increment financing. The Board of Directors voted to strongly support this bill. April 16
Colorado Marijuana Control Commission. Creates the Colorado Marijuana Control Commission, charged with promulgating rules regarding the sale and distribution of marijuana and marijuana products (adult-use and medical marijuana). If this commission will make decisions that could impact health (advertising, food safety, etc.), then the Health District board would strongly recommend the inclusion of a health or public health professional on the commission. April 16
2015 Legislative Session Wrap-Up
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An overview of legislation in the Heatlh District's main priority areas that was introduced during the 2015 session of the Colorado General Assembly. May 26