Grow Together with COBRT
April 23, 2019
Trade has long been considered the engine that powers businesses and that is very evident here in Colorado where our diverse economy has flourished in part due to our strong export market to Canada and Mexico. Trade with our northern and southern neighbors has been strategic and has allowed unprecedented growth for numerous Colorado companies. It is critical to not only recognize but to expand on the many benefits U.S. trade with Canada and Mexico has created - and continues to create - for American businesses, workers, and consumers. Growing the U.S. economy and creating American jobs is dependent on expanding trade opportunities with other countries, including our largest trade partners - Canada and Mexico. Withdrawing from or weakening trade with these partners would hurt the American economy, jeopardizing millions of American jobs and undercut U.S. global competitiveness. 

Public health and the environment became the top priority for regulating the oil and gas industry in Colorado, and local government gain unprecedented say-so about drilling under legislation Gov. Jared Polis signed into law Tuesday. The bill-signing came one day short of the second anniversary of the fatal Firestone home explosion that galvanized support to change laws surrounding oil and gas development near fast-growing Colorado communities. 

In a session in which Colorado legislators have dealt thoroughly with subjects ranging from energy to workplace regulations to sales-tax simplification, the one issue that many business leaders say has gone under-addressed is transportation. But in the penultimate week of the 2019 session, that may begin to change. The Senate will take up House Bills 1257 and 1258, which seek to ask voters in November to give up future tax refunds to pay for needed work in transportation, K-12 and higher education. On Tuesday, the Senate Transportation and Energy Committee will hear Senate Bill 239, which seeks to create a stakeholder group to study the potential imposition of a new fee on commercial vehicles. And legislators will continue to talk about a short-lived effort to redirect sales tax toward roadways that died at its sponsor's hands in a Senate committee on Thursday. 

Colorado Business Roundtable was honored to attend Governor Jared Polis' 100 day in office celebration. Thank you for the invitation and we are excited to hear more from Governor Polis at the State of the State event. 
In a legislative session that has seen Republicans and Democrats introduce a combined 10 bills so far dealing with the issue of affordable housing, Democrats made their most controversial move yet on Monday, advancing a bill that would allow cities and counties to institute rent control or other rent-stabilization measure should they so choose. But while Senate Bill 225 advances to a still-uncertain future, it is just one piece in a much larger discussion about ways to attach a housing-cost crisis that is acknowledged across the aisle as a potential roadblock to Colorado's continuing prosperity. And with less than three weeks until the end of the 2019 session, it remains to be seen exactly what steps legislators will be willing to take to address workforce housing, given that only one measure so far has made it to Gov. Jared Polis' desk and that coalitions are beginning to promote groups of bills that represent the best opportunity for a show of bipartisan support on this crucial issue. 

In an executive session of the Board of Trustees held earlier today, University of Denver (DU) Chancellor Rebecca Chopp announced her decision to step down as Chancellor, citing serious health conditions. Shortly after the Board meeting, she shared her intentions in a letter written to the University community. Chopp plans to continue serving DU as an advisor for significant projects initiated during her tenure. The Board also honored her service to DU by designating her Chancellor Emerita when she steps down. Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor Jeremy Haefner was unanimously selected by the Board to serve as Interim Chancellor, effective July 15, 2019. 

Xcel Energy aims to take over construction of a $743 million northeast Colorado wind energy project to ensure it is completed and generates savings and tax credits the company says will benefit its electrical customers and investors. The power company, the Denver metro-area's main electrical utility, seeks to win approval for taking possession of the Cheyenne Ridge Wind Project from the Colorado Public Utilities Commission in a hearing scheduled for April 24. 

A new report from the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC) on the U.S.-Mexico-Canada agreement (USMCA) marks "a key step" toward congressional action on the agreement, Business Roundtable said Thursday in a statement. The ITC report (here), required under Trade Promotion Authority, concluded that enacting USMCA would increase U.S. GDP by $68 billion (.35 percent), add 176,000 jobs and boost U.S. exports to Canada by 5.9 percent and to Mexico by 6.7 percent. "This comprehensive analysis shows that all broad industry sectors across the U.S. economy will benefit from USMCA," said Tom Linebarger, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cummins and Chair of the Business Roundtable Trade and International Committee.

NEW YORK CITY -  April 18, 2019 - The Skillful State Network, a Markle Foundation initiative, today announced its expansion to 26 member states. The governors of California, Connecticut, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, and Pennsylvania have joined the founding states in the Network's efforts to create a labor market in which skills learned anywhere are valued and people can rapidly and affordably access the information and training needed for good jobs in the digital economy. Entering its second year, the Skillful State Network fosters collaboration among innovative governors from states large and small, coast to coast and across the political spectrum. The governors in the Skillful State Network have made workforce development a state priority and are committed to acting on proven practices that enable their residents and employers to thrive. 

Listen at KDMT 1690 AM Denver's Money Talk from 
4-5 p.m. Monday through Friday or  live stream online. Podcasts are available at and on your favorite podcast app the day after live airing.

Stream or Download These Recent Episodes

4th Annual Aerospace and STEM Summit - University of Colorado


State of the State - COBRT and CiviCO

Annual Members Meeting - Colorado Succeeds

COBRT partnership opportunities are now available. 

Get noticed. 
Support policy efforts. 
Invest in Colorado.

Enjoy this week's newsletter? Have ideas that can improve the newsletter's coverage in the future? 


Colorado Business Roundtable, P.O. Box 5608, Denver, CO 80216
Sent by in collaboration with
Constant Contact