Area legislators get their bills moving

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— Area legislators Jack Taylor and Al White quickly got down to work this week, introducing seven bills during the first three days of the legislative session at the Capitol in Denver.

Taylor, a Steamboat Springs Republican, has brought three bills to the Senate floor. Senate Bill 62, co-sponsored by Rep. Wes McKinley, D-Walsh, would improve the ability of military personnel serving overseas to vote by absentee ballot. The bill would allow personnel to vote by fax and potentially by e-mail, at the discretion of Colorado's Secretary of State.

Taylor introduced the bill Wednesday, the first day of the session, and Senate leadership assigned it to the Senate's Committee of State, Veterans and Military Affairs.

When a bill is introduced in the House or Senate, the bill is assigned to the appropriate committee. Committees of representatives and senators cover topics relevant to state laws, such as education, finance, judicial affairs, transportation and agriculture.

A member of the majority party -- Democrats in the House and Senate -- leads each committee.

Committee members discuss and hear public comment on bills and vote on whether to move bills forward to the House or Senate.

If a bill is approved through committee and both legislative bodies, it goes before Gov. Bill Owens for action.

Search for bills and read bill text at www.leg.state.co.us

Taylor's Senate Bill 15 would specify the designation of state vehicles. His Senate Bill 14 would increase insurance requirements for real estate brokers and require people who register to become real estate developers to submit fingerprints for state and national criminal history checks.

Rep. Al White, a Winter Park Republican, is co-sponsoring that bill with Taylor. White's other proposed legislation includes House Bill 1093, which would create a ballot question in 2006 asking Moffat County voters to permanently extend mill-levy property tax funding for Colorado Northwestern Community College in Craig and Rangely.

-- To reach Mike Lawrence, call 871-4203

or e-mail mlawrence@steamboatpilot.com

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