(Nov. 1) – Two leading House Democrats responded to Gov. John Hickenlooper’s 2014-2015 budget outline with positive reviews. The House Democrats’ comments come in response to the Hickenlooper administration’s letter and press release articulating the Governor’s priorities for the 2014-2015 budget.
“Governor Hickenlooper has demonstrated leadership these past three years on Colorado’s budget,” said Rep. Jenise May (D-Aurora), the newest member of the JBC. “His budget team has provided the framework for the responsible bipartisan budgets we’ve passed recently, and we are in a strong position to recover from Colorado’s devastating floods because of that fiscal prudence. But we have to keep it up, because the challenge before us is huge.
“I’m pleased that the proposal boosts the general fund reserve to ensure we can continue to recover from this year’s fires and floods, while also limiting growth,” May continued.
Speaker Mark Ferrandino noted that in addition to positioning the state to recover from Colorado’s recent natural disasters, the governor’s budget letter also proposes funding a number of other essential priorities, including increases to education funding. Specifically, the speaker highlighted the governor’s boost to higher education, including a proposal to limit tuition increases to no more than 6 percent and free up additional funding for financial aid including merit-based scholarships.
“This letter signals the governor’s commitment to our schools, and would be another step forward for our chronically underfunded system of education,” he said. “I am especially encouraged that the governor’s budget infuses critical resources into our colleges and universities, and addresses college affordability head-on. There’s much work to be done, but the governor has charted a good path for the JBC and the legislature.”