(Feb. 28) – A bill to recognize the chile growers of Southern Colorado with their own special license plate won voice-vote House approval this morning.

HB17-1012, sponsored by Rep. Daneya Esgar, D-Pueblo, was requested by the Pueblo Chile Growers Association, which is mounting an economic development campaign to give their products a higher profile.

“The Pueblo chile is Colorado’s chile,” she told the House. “Our local growers deserve recognition of their outstanding chiles.”

Having gotten a taste of Colorado’s effort, the New Mexico legislature is rushing through its own license plate bill recognizing its popular Hatch chiles. Today, Rep. Esgar amended her bill to make sure Colorado can win the race to establish a special plate for its chiles.

Rep. Esgar said she had been told that “Colorado shouldn’t be proud of their chiles because New Mexico is the chile capital of the United States.” That sealed the deal, and the House gave voice-vote approval to the fast-tracked bill.

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