Note: Meet at the Fort Collins Park-N-Ride at Harmony Road and I-25 at 9:00 AM Tuesday to carpool to the bill signing in Denver. For more information, email Nora at firstname.lastname@example.org.
GOVERNOR RITTER TO SIGN HB-1161 ON TUESDAY
Bill to become Colorado law May 20
Next step: rulemaking process to draft detailed regulations
Posted May 15, 2008, Updated May 16, 2008
Representative Randy Fischer notified supporters of HB-1161 today that Governor Ritter plans to sign the bill at 10:30 AM Tuesday, May 20 at the Capitol in Denver. Fischer and Rep. John Kefalas took the lead in drafting the bill in response to Powertech Uranium Corp.'s proposal to mine uranium near Fort Collins.
Rep. Randy Fischer
Fischer is a civil engineer and runs an engineering consulting firm specializing in abandoned mine cleanup.
According to a knowledgeable source, Fischer was instrumental in negotiating bill amendments with Powertech and other mining industry representatives. While the amendments narrowed the scope of the bill somewhat and addressed a few industry concerns, Fischer, Kefalas, and Senate sponsor Steve Johnson refused to weaken the core provisions of the bill pertaining to permitting, mine operation safety, and post-mining aquifer restoration.
When the bill becomes law on Tuesday, the state's regulatory rulemaking process will begin. Staff from the Colorado Division of Reclamation Mining & Safety will formulate detailed regulations to implement and enforce the provisions of HB-1161.
The rulemaking process is described in Title 24 - Article 4 of the Colorado Revised Statutes, "Rule-making and Licensing Procedures by State Agencies." The state has also published a flowchart, "Rulemaking Process: Deadlines and Timelines."
The process includes a public hearing and opportunities for submission of comments. Public participation is vital to ensure that the final regulations adhere to the intent of the bill. It is unclear how long it will take for the regulations to become effective, but the process is likely to last several months.
Rep. Fischer's communication today acknowledges the tenacity of northern Colorado residents who worked for passage of HB-1161:
Thank you all for your extraordinary efforts to get our uranium protection standards bill - HB-1161 - passed during the 2008 legislative session. You probably already know this, but I wanted to make sure you knew that Governor Ritter plans to sign the bill on Tuesday, May 20, at 10:30 am at the Capitol. I truly hope you can make it to the bill signing. You deserve to be recognized for your hard work and constant effort during the session.
Rulemaking Process: Deadlines and Timelines (flowchart)
TITLE 24 GOVERNMENT – STATE : ADMINISTRATION - ARTICLE 4 - Rule-making and Licensing Procedures by State Agencies
Full text of HB-1161 - May 2, 2008