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The Senate on Saturday passed the 2020-21 budget, House Bill 1360, and 29 out of the 40 “orbital” bills designed to change state law in order to balance the budget.And with the budget out of the Senate, the House on Saturday began working on the School Finance Act, House Bill 1418.The school finance bill comes with a heavy lift: a $612 million addition to the debt owed to K-12 schools.
During final discussion of the Long Appropriations Bill Saturday, Sen. Rachel Zenzinger, an Arvada Democrat and member of the Joint Budget Committee that crafted it, said the upcoming budget is the hardest piece of legislation she’s ever worked on.“I don’t love this budget. It isn’t pretty. It’s difficult choices; shared sacrifice, uncomfortable reductions, persistent questions, tearful discussion, painful recommendations and you’ll find protections for the things we value most.” she said.Zenzinger said she has received hundreds of emails, pleading with her and JBC members not to balance the budget on the backs of students, state workers, seniors or rural Colorado.But it’s the responsibility of the Senate, the General Assembly and the JBC to produce a balanced budget, she said. “This budget has regrettable choices. …
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