Colorado Capitol Report

What We’re Watching: HB 1078

What We’re Watching: HB 1078

With legislative session well underway, the Colorado Chamber has been closely following all of the bills that could impact employers across the state. This week, we’re watching HB 1078 regarding unemployment compensation.

The bill creates a dependent allowance for an individual receiving unemployment compensation for each of the eligible individual’s dependents. The dependent allowance would start on July 1, 2025. The allowance would be $35 per dependent per week and would increase annually for inflation. The bill defines “dependent” as a child of an eligible individual who receives at least half of the child’s financial support from the eligible individual.

A study done by the Department of Labor and Employment found that adding a dependent allowance to unemployment benefits would cost the UI Trust Fund anywhere from $15-50 million. The Colorado Chamber worked diligently with our partners last year to pass legislation to increase the funding and solvency of the fund. Therefore, there are concerns that adding an additional allowance for dependents will send the fund in the wrong direction and lead to additional costs for employers.

Due to these concerns, the Colorado Chamber’s labor and employment council took a position of “oppose” on the bill this week. The Chamber’s head of government affairs Meghan Dollar is testifying against the bill for its first hearing in the House Business Affairs and Labor Committee today.

100+ Business Leaders Gathered for Chamber Day at the Capitol & the Kick-off of Leadership Colorado

Presidents, CEOs and Board Members of Local Chambers of Commerce

More than 100 business leaders from across Colorado gathered in downtown Denver on February 8 for Chamber Day at the Capitol. The event was organized by the Colorado Chamber to give local chambers of commerce from across the state the opportunity to convene at the state capitol for advocacy training, and for a chance to meet with their respective elected representatives concerning business issues that affect their members.

Nearly 80 presidents and CEOs of local chambers of commerce along with their board members, key volunteers and members of the business community were joined by the Colorado Chamber’s CEO, Loren Furman and the Chamber’s government affairs team led by Meghan Dollar for an advocacy briefing and to field questions about the prevailing business issues in communities across the state. The group was also joined by John Gonzales, executive director of Government Affairs at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and they received a special visit from State Representative Shannon Bird, who serves as Vice Chair of both Appropriations and the Joint Budget Committees, and State Representative Bob Marshall, who serves on the Finance and Judiciary committees.

Joining the local chambers of commerce were nearly 30 members of the Leadership Colorado class of 2023, who kicked-off this year’s program with a visit to the capitol and an overview of the Colorado Chamber’s role in championing a pro-business policy agenda for our state.

Leadership Colorado is a nine-month program designed for emerging and established business leaders who wish to gain a better understanding of the diverse industries that fuel Colorado’s economy as well as how policy intersects with business. This year’s cohort is represented by more than 17 diverse industries from across the state. The cohort met with members of the Chamber’s leadership team and received an overview of policy-making in Colorado from former State Representative Joe Rice, who now serves as director of local and state government relations at Lockheed Martin Space, a member of the Colorado Chamber.

Leadership Colorado Class of 2023

In the News: Colorado Chamber Press Roundup

Chamber News

KOA Radio: Colo Chamber of Commerce’s Loren Furman on proposed Colo Fair Workweek bill

Chamber President and CEO Loren Furman spoke on KOA radio about the chamber’s opposition to proposed Colorado  Fair Workweek bill.

Listen here…

Gazette: Coalition of business, industry groups seek to stop ‘Fair Workweek’ bill

A coalition of business and industry groups is rallying behind efforts to stop a proposal to require businesses to pay employees for showing up — even when they did not do any work because there’s not enough work that day.

Read more…

Chaffee County Times: National Civics Bee sponsored by the BV Chamber

The Buena Vista Chamber of Commerce is partnering with The Civic Trust of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation as well as the public school, private school and home school communities in Buena Vista to bring middle school students the National Civics Bee.

Read more…

Arvada Press: Arvada Chamber of Commerce to participate in National Civics Bee pilot

The Arvada Chamber of Commerce announced on Feb. 1 that it would be hosting the regional portion of the National Civics Bee for Jefferson County this spring, the first time the humanities competition has been held in Colorado.

Read more…


Member News

Westword: Restaurateurs Feel Forked by Fair Workweek Proposal

On January 24, HB23-1118: Fair Workweek Employment Standards landed like a stink bomb on the local restaurant industry when it was introduced in the Colorado Legislature… One organization that was not consulted during the stakeholder process: the Colorado Restaurant Association.

Read more…

Denver Post: Chamber Member Pinnacol Invests in Paid Training as a Way Into the Workforce

Colorado’s Pinnacol Assurance is looked at nationally — the U.S. Department of Labor recently visited — as a model of a successful youth apprenticeship program.

Read more…