DENVER – As the 2019 state legislative session comes to a close, the Colorado Chamber of Commerce highlighted the legislative accomplishments the organization achieved on behalf of its members and the broader business community.
“With a heavy focus on business-related issues at the capitol this legislative session, our primary responsibility has been to protect employers from onerous new regulations and financial burdens that could impede their ability to create jobs and do business in Colorado,” Colorado Chamber President Chuck Berry said. “We entered this session in January with a challenging political environment for the business community, and while several problematic bills did ultimately pass, I’m proud to say that the Colorado Chamber held the line on many issues of critical importance to businesses across the state.”
The Colorado Chamber’s lobby team, led by Senior Vice President of State and Federal Relations Loren Furman, aggressively advocated for the business community this session, working closely with legislators to amend bills that would have had a significant impact on the state economy.
“Our biggest priority this session was SB 188, the paid family leave bill, and making sure legislators heard the concerns of businesses across the state about how such a massive new government program would affect their operations,” said Furman. “We’ve been working with the bill sponsors since last summer to reach an outcome that works for employers and employees, forming a coalition of more than 75 public and private organizations to make our position clear. We’re pleased that these efforts ultimately paid off, and the amended bill that passed this week takes a much more thoughtful approach to paid leave in Colorado.”
The Colorado Chamber changed its position from “opposed” to “neutral” on several bills after lawmakers took major steps to improve the proposals – from the paid family and medical leave insurance bill (SB 188), to the equal pay bill (SB 85), to a bill that would have made sweeping changes to state income tax laws amidst pending litigation (SB 233).
The Colorado Chamber will release an official overview of the legislative session and the results of the organization’s work in the coming weeks.
The Colorado Chamber of Commerce was created in 1965 based on the merger of the Colorado Chamber and the Colorado Manufacturers’ Association. It is the only business association in Colorado that works to improve the business climate for all sizes of business from a statewide, multi-industry perspective. As a private, non-profit organization, the Colorado Chamber’s work is funded solely by its members.