Colorado House Republicans offer amendments to remake civil rights commission

An amendment offered by Rep. Yeulin Willett of Grand Junction sought to ensure that members of the commission are subject to the standards of conduct set by the Colorado code of judicial conduct. Wist said administrative law judges are held to that code, but the commission is not, although it makes quasi-judicial rulings. Rep. Paul Lundeen of Monument asked that the commission be extended five years instead of nine, as recommended in the sunset review.

While the amendments may not have succeeded in the judiciary committee, it’s a good bet that at least some of those amendments, and perhaps others, may surface again in the committee, on the House floor or if and when the bill makes it to the Senate.

Democratic Rep. Leslie Herod of Denver offered the only successful amendment, to simply extend the commission and division for nine more years, without other recommendations submitted in the sunset review. Committee co-chair Rep. Joe Salazar of Thornton said Democrats hoped offering a “clean bill” without the other recommendations, which included heightened fines for discrimination based on complaints involving public accommodations, would make the bill palatable to Republicans, especially those in the Senate.

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