Thursday, July 28, 2011

Commission on Aging members sharply criticize Colorado Speaker of the House

Several members of the Governor's non-partisan commission say McNulty went too far

DENVER-Today, Colorado House Speaker Frank McNulty (R-Highlands Ranch) was sharply criticized by several members of the non-partisan Colorado Commission on Aging for using a commission meeting as a venue to make a controversial statement on the Colorado Homestead Tax Exemption. The commission was given no advance notice by the Speaker, and his remarks were in conflict with the commission’s view.

Commission Chair Vivian Stowell said, “We gave the Speaker deference to address the commission because of his position. We did not give him permission to advocate a policy position at the meeting. The commission is non-partisan, does not make policy or undertake an advocacy role.”

State Senator Lucia Guzman (D-Denver) said, “Speaker McNulty was quick to make a promise that he knows the General Assembly cannot deliver. The restoration of the Homestead exemption would blow another $99 million hole in a budget that already will be difficult to balance.”

Joint Budget Committee member Senator Pat Steadman (D-Denver) said, “These types of comments are premature and they disrespect the Joint Budget Committee and the entire budgeting process. In a most difficult year when revenues will fall short of providing essential services to people in need, the JBC will thoughtfully consider dozens of competing demands on the state’s limited resources to balance the budget equitably.”

The Colorado Commission on Aging consists of 17 volunteer members appointed by the Governor, with consent of the Senate. The Commission is comprised of:

• Two persons from each Congressional District (one from each major political party), one person at-large, one from the Senate, and one from the House of Representatives. One of the Congressional District appointees must be from the Western Slope.
• No more than 9 members may be from the same major political party.
• Appointment is for a four-year term.