Senate Passes Bipartisan Bill to Grow Colorado Industries
DENVER – Today, the Senate passed bipartisan legislation sponsored by Senator Rollie Heath (D-Boulder) and Senator Mark Scheffel (R-Parker) to strengthen and grow Colorado’s key industries as part of the state's larger economic development plan. Senate Bill 144 allows the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade to develop a strategy to support job creation and growth in Colorado's key industries. Senate Bill 144 builds upon Governor John Hickenlooper’s Colorado Blueprint, a bottom up approach to economic development designed to make Colorado more economically competitive.
Senator Heath offered the following comment on Senate Bill 144 today:
“This bill is an important part of a larger statewide economic strategy to help Colorado’s key industries expand. This was a great opportunity for us to work with our colleagues across the aisle to pass legislation that will stimulate our economy, support our driving industries, and create new jobs.”
In order to develop the key industries strategy, Senate Bill 144 will encourage the Office of Economic Development and International Trade to:
- Indentify all stakeholders and relevant organizations related to a key industry including businesses, educational institutions, and industry and trade associations
- Provide administrative support for the creation of an economic development plan for the specific industry
- This plan will identify any current financial barriers, review government regulations related to the industry, develop marketing strategies, review educational and training availability, look for measures to support and expand, and find opportunities for increasing the industries competitiveness and innovation
- Review the plan with stakeholders to identify potential policy proposals that would help the industry grow
- Create a report for each key industry and deliver this report to the general assembly
The state’s key industries were identified in an independent analysis conducted by Pricewaterhouse Coopers of state economic data including wages, gross domestic product, and employment figures. Some of the state’s key industries include tourism, manufacturing, agriculture, aerospace, electronics, information, energy and natural resources, defense and homeland security, creative industries, bioscience, technology, finance, health and wellness, transportation, and construction.
This bipartisan legislation is sponsored in the House by Representative Ken Summers (R- Lakewood) and Representative Su Ryden (D-Aurora). Senate Bill 144 will now be heard in the House of Representatives.