Colorado Capitol Report

A Sad Day for Colorado and Loss of a Great Leader

A Sad Day for Colorado and Loss of a Great Leader…

It has been a tough week for the Colorado Chamber team and the friends and family of Hugh McKean who passed away on Saturday, October 29th– two days after celebrating his 55th birthday.  Hugh was a very special person who cared deeply about his friends and family and those who worked closely with him at the State Capitol.  Hugh always brought a smile, and if you were lucky, a big bear hug when he greeted you.  He vigorously fought for the interests of Colorado businesses no matter how challenging the issues became.

We were lucky to see Hugh one last time during our Annual Meeting Luncheon where he served on a panel of his fellow House & Senate leaders who serve on both sides of the aisle.  It was during that panel that Hugh described the strong friendships they had developed with each other, demonstrating his remarkable way of bringing people together despite party affiliation or policy differences.  We will miss this wonderful man and wish his family our heartfelt sympathies.

*Hugh served as Minority Leader for the State House of Representatives since January 2021 and was elected to House District 51 in 2016 which includes Larimer County.

Colorado Chamber and Colorado Succeeds Partner to Bolster State’s Talent Pipeline

This week, statewide education advocacy organization Colorado Succeeds announced the expansion of their impact and scope of work into postsecondary education, and the Colorado Chamber of Commerce is proud to be a lead partner to them in this work.   

First founded in 2006 to focus on the K-12 ecosystem, Colorado Succeeds has responded to the needs of learners and business, who do not see the education system as a siloed system but as a continuous lifelong experience that should lead to greater economic mobility. Postsecondary education—education beyond high school, whether an in-demand industry credential program, community college, or four-year university—is a crucial component of their vision of ensuring all of Colorado’s children are educated to their greatest potential, and all of Colorado’s businesses have the talented and innovative homegrown workforce they need to thrive. To accomplish this, postsecondary credentials must also be high-value and in-demand.  

Colorado Succeeds’ new report, Unlocking Our State’s Potential: One Million Credentials of Value for Coloradans, outlines the state’s postsecondary challenges and opportunities for business advocacy and leadership.    

It is critical for Colorado to reboot higher education so it works for students and businesses. We believe that Colorado Succeeds is uniquely suited to lead in this work in partnership with industry and support Colorado in graduating more diverse talent faster and at scale. 

Workforce and labor issues were identified as a top concern for business leaders in Colorado in the Chamber’s recent annual survey of CEO’s. The Colorado Chamber is committed to finding short- and long-term solutions to bolstering our talent pipeline so Colorado remains an attractive place to live and do business for years to come. Our partnership with Colorado Succeeds will focus on connecting business and industry with the right partners in education and exploring legislative pathways to achieving our goals. 

We hope you’ll join us in supporting this effort by signing on as a supporting organization, and consider the variety of ways to get involved in the work to improve Colorado’s postsecondary ecosystem.   

Reach out to Colorado Succeeds’ Senior Manager of Strategic Partnerships Ben Gerig to sign on to the movement, supporting one million credentials for Coloradans. You may also become a member of Colorado Succeeds to champion efficient and effective policy, advocacy, and implementation solutions–improving the education to employment ecosystem across Colorado. 

Employers Get Educated on Colorado’s Equal Pay for Equal Work Law

Colorado’s Equal Pay for Equal Work Law continues to raise confusion and challenges for both private and public employers statewide.  The Colorado Chamber hosted an Employer Training Workshop this week to help employers understand the current requirements to ensure compliance with the law and avoid potential fines.

Jennifer Harpole, Shareholder at Littler law firm and CO Chamber member, served as the Workshop’s instructor on this topic and provided great insight and guidance to employers who participated in the Workshop.  Her instruction included specific details on the law which passed in 2019, the current regulations and potential fines being enforced by the CO Department of Labor & Employment for employers operating in Colorado and that have multi-state operations.

Jennifer has spent decades practicing in the area of employment law and specializes in many areas including:

  • Wage & Hour
  • Misclassification
  • Commission & Bonus packages
  • Joint Employment
  • Enforcement of Arbitration Agreements

If you are seeking additional legal guidance on this topic, we strongly encourage you to contact Jennifer Harpole at the following:

Jennifer Harpole, Shareholder, Littler
[email protected]
(303) 362-2868

Next Employer Training Workshop:
Topic:  How to Comply with Colorado’s Paid Sick Leave Law and Regulations
December 7, 2022 @ 2:00p.m.

Colorado Chamber Testifies & Submits Formal Comments on FAMLI Proposed Rules

On Tuesday night, the Division of Family & Medical Leave Insurance held yet another rulemaking hearing on its proposed rules regarding “coordination of benefits, local government rules and premium rules.”

The Colorado Chamber staff testified at the rulemaking hearing and also submitted formal comments regarding concerns with language regarding on calculation of benefits and assessment of premiums for employers.

As a reminder, the state-run FAMLI program becomes effective January 1, 2023. Please contact Larry Hudson at [email protected] or [email protected] with any questions.

Leadership Colorado Applications Are Open!

Leadership Colorado (formerly known as the EXECs Advocacy Program) is a 9-month executive development program for emerging executives and industry professionals. Participants explore prominent Colorado companies through exclusive tours and hands-on experiences.

Please click here for the 2023 e-brochure and contact Molly Kostka, Leadership Colorado Program Manager with any questions that arise.

Spaces are filling up fast! Strongest priority given to candidates with early applications.

Program Begins: February 8th, 2023