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Kerry Donovan
Colorado Senate
District 5

In the News

We really are better together

Donovan, Scanga talk Water

Western Slope legislators dismayed over Senate water bill

Upcoming Events

Gunnison Town Hall

Special Guest Speaker: Dr. Greg Salsbury, President of Western State Colorado University

Topic: Higher Education

When: Saturday, March 28th, 3:00-4:00pm

Where: Gunnison Community Aquatics Center, Palisades Room
200 Spencer Avenue, Gunnison, CO 81230

Hi Kathy,

This past weekend I took a tour of Senate District 5, with community events in Delta, Gunnison and Chaffee Counties. On Saturday I was joined by State Representative Millie Hamner, Executive Director of the Department of Natural Resources Mike King, Regional Manager for the Department of Local Affairs Elyse Ackermann and residents of Delta County for a well-attended Town Hall discussion in Paonia. On Sunday, I hosted a meet-and-greet at Rumors Coffee and Tea House in Crested Butte and a water-focused Town Hall meeting in Salida with Terry Scanga from the Upper Arkansas Water Conservation District. 

Last week was an exciting week at the Capitol, and I had the chance to participate in several great events. Wednesday was Agriculture Day at the Capitol, and chefs from across the state teamed up with agricultural producers to create delicious dishes. 
Beautiful Ag Day desserts from Chef Peter Wimmler
On Thursday, I joined my colleagues from the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Natural Resources and Energy on a tour of the Henderson Molybdenum Mine, which has been in operation since 1976.
Touring Henderson Molybdenum Mine

What is the "Long Bill"?

Next week the Colorado General Assembly will debate the annual appropriations bill, given the apt nickname "The Long Bill." The Long Bill starts in the Joint Budget Committee (JBC), where a bipartisan group of six members from the Senate and the House of Representatives hear budget requests from each department in the State's executive branch, then create a detailed budget that outlines how state revenue will be spent for each program in every department. The Long Bill proceeds to the Colorado Senate and House of Representatives, where each chamber can amend and approve the proposed budget. After both chambers approve the Long Bill, it heads to the Governor's desk for approval. If you want to read more about this process, check out this great summary compiled by the Colorado Fiscal Institute: The Long Journey of the Long Bill.

Why is it important to follow this process? The budget process in Colorado is complicated, but by paying attention to where budget funds are appropriated, engaged citizens can see which programs are prioritized in the state and make sure that the approved budget reflects our shared values. Individual citizens are welcome to contact their Senator and Representative to make sure that their voice is heard when the Long Bill is debated in the House of Representatives and in the Senate. As your state Senator, I welcome your comments on Colorado's budget, I will make sure to keep your priorities in mind next week we debate the Long Bill.

Legislative Update

Colorado has 23 million acres of public lands, which are vital to our economy and our Colorado way of life. This bill will provide technical and financial support to local governments that are affected by federal land management agencies, and encourage more effective cooperation between municipalities, counties, State and Federal agencies. This bill extends a program which provides a tax credit to water rights owners who donate their water rights to the Colorado Water Conservation Board. The program helps to maintain healthy rivers by encouraging water rights owners to keep water in our rivers. 
  The economic recovery has yet to reach many rural communities here in Colorado, and this bill would help distressed rural counties rebound from economic hardship.This bill would reauthorize the Rural Economic Development Initiative (REDI) Grant Program.Grants under the REDI program would be used for infrastructure to attract new jobs, or for employee training programs in order to increase employment.
As always, I welcome your thoughts, feedback, questions, and concerns. Please give me a call at (303) 866-4871, send me an email at, or stop by my office at the Capitol. I look forward to hearing from you!

Kerry Donovan
Colorado Senate
District 5

Copyright © 2015 Donovan for State Senate, All rights reserved.

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