‘Daunting’ job ahead, says newly minted Rep. Bradford

Legislature sits down to a full plate

DENVER — “So help me God.”

With those words, state Rep. Laura Bradford, R-Collbran, and 99 of her state House and Senate peers began Wednesday what legislative leaders called the most challenging session in a
generation.

With challenges such as a faltering economy, multimillion-dollar budget shortfalls and crumbling roads, Bradford said her first session should be “interesting” as she grapples with a series of challenging and weighty responsibilities as a lawmaker.

“We just want to focus on (keeping) the jobs that are already here,” Bradford said.

“It’s really daunting,” she added.

Though she expressed hope that the Legislature can guide the state to economic stability,

Bradford’s words mirrored those of her leaders who challenged the General Assembly to focus on nurturing Colorado’s business climate and job growth this year.

“These tough times paint the backdrop for much of what we do in the next 120 days. And these tough times will beckon the best thinking — and tough choices — by us all,” Senate Minority Leader Josh Penry, R-Grand Junction, said in his opening-day speech.

Speaker of the House Terrance Carroll, D-Denver, challenged the General Assembly to work together through the state’s economic downturn, despite whatever challenges and controversies arise.

Carroll said his caucus will focus on introducing tax credits for businesses creating jobs in Colorado and providing some relief for companies seeking loans.

“We will do everything in our power to preserve the critical services that create opportunity,” he said.

House Minority Leader Mike May, R-Parker, challenged his peers to use bipartisan solutions to solve the state’s problems.

“We do our best work when we work together,” May said.


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