There’s often a divide between Colorado’s rural lawmakers and those representing larger communities along the urban Front Range. That dynamic was apparent during the 2014 legislative session with Republicans routinely blaming Democrats for waging what they said is a "war on rural Colorado."
As Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper weighs whether to call a special legislative session to deal with oil and gas issues, the issue of property rights is on his mind.
The governor has equated some of the recently passed bans and moratoriums on hydraulic fracturing to "…snatching the property of a citizen. Just taking it without due compensation."
While in some cases the courts could interpret fracking bans as taking away private property, getting to the point where a ban is ruled a taking of private property would be time consuming and costly, experts say.
Governor John Hickenlooper’s office said he’s still in discussions about whether to call lawmakers back to the state capitol for a special session on oil and gas issues. The goal would be to pass a compromise bill and avoid a fight at the ballot box.
Governor Hickenlooper's office has announced a compromise bill has been reached to head off a local control fight over fracking at the ballot. No special session as been called for it yet and there remain doubts it will come to fruition. The New York Times looks at the debate fracking has taken on in the state.
An impassioned national debate over the oil-production technique known as fracking is edging toward the ballot box in Colorado, opening an election-year rift between moderate, energy-friendly Democrats and environmentalists who want to rein in drilling or give local communities the power to outlaw it altogether.
Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a bill Friday, June 6 that bans the practice of keeping seriously mentally ill prisoners in solitary confinement.
The bill, which passed with strong bipartisan support, won the support of advocates and rights groups like the American Civil Liberties Union, who say the isolation of prisoners with mental illness violates the constitution’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment and endangers public safety.