(Denver, CO) -- Sunday isn't a usual day to meet for Colorado lawmakers however, Sunday March 26th, the Colorado House of Representatives got together to tackle some hot button bills, mainly gun control legislation.
On the agenda:
Second reading of Senate Bill 23-169, Increasing Minimum Age To Purchase Firearms
Third reading and final passage:
HB23-1036Nontoxic Bullet Replacement Hunting Program
SB23-083Physician Assistant Collaboration Requirements
SB23-146Colorado Apprenticeship Directory Information
SB23-170Extreme Risk Protection Order Petitions
SB23-168Gun Violence Victims' Access To Judicial System
There was also a posting for general order of second reading of bills:
SHB23-1032Remedies Persons With Disabilities
HB23-1142Information Of Person Reporting Child Abuse
Republican Representative Rod Bockenfeld stood to speak on the fiscal impact of Senate Bill 170, the Extreme Risk Protection Order Petitions bill. He explained that the fiscal note on the legislation states that costs to be added to state and local expenditures would increase by an estimated $379,308.
Democrat Representative Mike Weissman spoke in favor of the bill stating he worries about mental health in Colorado. He urged others to support the bill. "Firearms tend to be very good at doing things that cannot be un-done." Weissman finished.
Reading a letter from his county commissioners, El Paso County Republican Don Wilson read the focus should be that individuals who are dealing with mental health issues have access to the resources they need. Licensed educators are not trained mental health professionals and may not have the expertise to correctly identify and report mental health behaviors that may result in the suspension of someone's rights.
The bill expands who can report persons with possible concerning mental health issues, expanding the Red Flag fire law passed in 2019, House Bill 19-11177. The summary of the bill discussed Sunday is as follows:
The bill repeals and reenacts the statutory article related to extreme risk protection orders. Under current law a family or household member and a law enforcement officer or agency can petition for an extreme risk protection order. The bill expands the list of who can petition for an extreme risk protection order to include licensed medical care providers, licensed mental health-care providers, licensed educators, and district attorneys. The bill requires the office of gun violence prevention to expend funds annually on a public education campaign regarding the availability of, and the process for requesting, an extreme risk protection order.
You can watch the discussion live at https://www.coloradochannel.net/sessions/?id=265172
We've reached out to District 47 Representative Ty Winter for response. He replied he will call us when he can and explained they are still debating the bill at this hour.