Give credit to members of the Colorado Senate Republican Caucus for coming up with a pretty clever way to describe the manner in which the Governor of Denver, John Hickenlooper, treats the rest of Colorado.
Taking to the Twitterverse, numerous legislators led by Senator Greg Brophy (R-Wray) have been using the handle #Hicked to describe the negative impact Senate Bill 252 – and other poorly written legislative proposals — will have on rural areas of Colorado.
Too cute by half, Senate Bill 252 was introduced by Senate President John Morse (D-Manitou Springs) and House Speaker Mark Ferrandino (D-Denver) pretty late in to this legislative session. The text of the legislation suggests its intent is to: “increase Colorado’s renewable energy standard so as to encourage the deployment of methane capture technologies.”
Unfortunately, the notion of capturing methane gas that’s currently being vented in to the atmosphere from coal mines around Colorado is being used as leverage to gain support for an otherwise poorly written piece of legislation.
We believe that capturing and using such vented gas is a noble goal and a good idea. We also believe that attaching it to a controversial bill which seeks to expand Colorado’s renewable portfolio standard by 150% is cynical politics.
As rural electric co-ops, chambers of commerce and business organizations from around Colorado have been pointing out, this feel-good legislation drawn up by downtown Denver environmental groups will have a disproportionate negative impact on rate payers in rural areas of Colorado.
The overarching point which seems to be lost on metro-area Democrats is the notion that at some point, someone has to foot the bill for their pie-in-the-sky green energy programs. In this case, it looks like members of rural electric co-ops throughout the state will be the ones grasping for a chair when the music stops.
Undeterred by these facts, Governor Hickenlooper recently opined: “In a way, this is an urban issue which is going to require some inconvenience from rural people.”
Senate Bill 13-252 is a bad bill and it’s the last thing our fragile economy in Colorado needs to absorb. Governor Hickenlooper and the gaggle of metro area legislators running the General Assembly need to step back and reconsider its ramifications on the rest of Colorado.