Fee hike for cop training wins praise of legislators

A bipartisan cadre of state lawmakers Tuesday praised Republican Grand Junction Rep. Steve King’s plan to increase vehicle registration fees by 35 cents to better fund police training.

House Bill 1036 passed its first full-House vote Tuesday afternoon with numerous lawmakers saying the fee increase is a sensible way to underwrite public safety.

“This is about improving traffic safety for all of us,” Rep. Jerry Frangas, D-Denver said. “It’s a good approach. It’s fiscally prudent.”

Under the bill, King’s fee increase is expected to send an additional $1.49 million to the Peace Officer Standards and Training program every year. King said his bill will help rural police agencies receive training even as they slash their budgets to confront the ongoing recession.

“I have heard that the time of a downturn is not the time to look at an increase in fees,” King said, “but, quite frankly, in the time of an economic downturn is exactly the time you want better-trained, better-prepared law enforcement.”

House Bill 1036 could come up for its final vote in the House as early as today.


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