Two hurdles down and one to go with our trooper pay budget amendment. We were successful in getting the Senate to approve an amendment to the Long Bill to give all troopers an additional 3% salary increase starting July 1st. The Senate amendment includes $391,070 more than the House amendment because some trooper units were mistakenly not included in the House amendment. The intent has always been to give all troopers from the newest cadet through command staff an additional 3% salary increase. Huge thanks to our amendment sponsors – Assistant Minority Leader John Cooke (R-Greeley) and Senator Joann Ginal (D-Fort Collins) – for their hard work. The only hurdle left is to get the Joint Budget Committee, which acts as the conference committee on the Long Bill, to include the trooper pay amendment in the conference committee report. This will probably be the hardest hurdle. I started lobbying the JBC members for their support last week.
We have just over four weeks to go until the General Assembly is required to adjourn sine die and there is still a lot of work to do. As of Friday, there had been 564 bills introduced – 364 in the House and 200 in the Senate. By my count, there are still over 300 bills still pending. I expect more late nights, like last Thursday when the House Energy & Environment Committee held a hearing until 2 am on a recycling bill. Only 31 days until the General Assembly is required to adjourn sine die.