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Speaker McCluskie: Connecting with Colorado: Progress and Goals for Legislative Session

Sep 29, 2023

This op-ed appeared in The Flume on Sept. 29, 2023.

With the legislative session just around the corner, I wanted to share an update about what I’ve been working on this summer and some of my goals for the next session. While in session, I must spend most of my time in Denver, but I always look forward to the summer months when I can reconnect with our community.

Recently, I held town halls and constituent meetings in Park, Summit, Grand, Jackson, Lake, and Chaffee counties. I feel incredibly fortunate to have the opportunity to drive across Colorado’s most beautiful district and connect with the hard-working local families who are the heart of our mountain and rural communities.

In this last session, we worked to save Coloradans money on what are often the three most expensive costs for families: housing, health care, and child care. We also passed legislation to bolster Colorado’s workforce, protect our air and water, and increase education funding to historic levels.

This past session, we delivered real resultson the issues that matter most to Coloradans by:

Investing a record amount toward Colorado’s K-12 public schools, which equates to more than $10,600 in per-pupil funding, reducing the Budget Stabilization factor by $180 million and a $30 million investment for rural schools.  

Establishing the wolf depredation compensation fund to compensate livestock owners and agricultural producers for the depredation of livestock and working animals by wolves.

Sending Proposition 123 dollars out the door as soon as possible to provide funding for affordable housing across Colorado’s diverse communities.

Investing $45 million over two years for aspiring professionals in high-demand fields to receive free college toward short-term degrees and industry certificates.

Creating an insurer-of-last-resort or FAIR Plan for individuals and businesses who can’t get property coverage in the traditional market due to the threat of wildfire.  

Establishing a Colorado River Drought Task Force, which will make policy recommendations for a collaborative solution to future drought on the Colorado River.

I am immensely proud of the bipartisan progress that I and the rest of the legislature have made, but we know there is still a lot of work left to do. I remain focused on making sure the voices of rural Coloradans are heard clearly at the Capitol. I am committed to ensuring that people can live where they work, afford a health care plan that doesn’t break the bank, obtain accessible, high-quality childcare options, and have access to sustainable water for agriculture, municipal use, and outdoor recreation.

I look forward to continuing discussions with community members to ensure voices are heard ahead of this upcoming legislative session. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact my office at

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