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FC067018C94CBC95872583D1006CA44E Hearing Summary




PUBLIC
BILL SUMMARY For HB19-1225

SENATE COMMITTEE ON JUDICIARY
Date Apr 3, 2019      
Location SCR 352



HB19-1225 - Referred to the Committee of the Whole - Consent Calendar


01:46:42 PM  

Senators Lee and Lundeen, co-prime sponsors, explained HB19-1225, concerning prohibiting the use of monetary bail for certain levels of offenses except in certain circumstances.  The senators emphasized that the bill will help ease jail overcrowding, as well as stop the practice of incarcerating individuals because of poverty.  The committee discussed the crimes impacted by this bill. 

01:50:24 PM  

Michael Neil, representing himself and Colorado Cross Disability Coalition, testified in favor of the bill.  He distributed a letter in support of the bill from the executive director of the Colorado Cross Disability Coalition (Attachment C).  He discussed how even short stays in jail wreak havoc on those with disabilities. 

01:54:35 PM  

Natalia Marshall spoke in favor of the bill on behalf of the family of Michael Marshall, an inmate who died while in custody at Denver County Jail for a nonviolent charge of trespassing.   She discussed how her uncle had mental health issues and could not pay bond.  She expressed hope that this bill will save lives by not incarcerating people for minor offenses.  

01:59:32 PM  

Terese Howard, representing Denver Homeless Outloud, testified in support of the bill. She discussed the impacts of jail on homeless people who do not have the money to pay bail. 

02:04:02 PM  

Becca Curry, representing the ACLU of Colorado, spoke in favor of the bill.  She discussed jail overcrowding and the consequences of incarcerating someone for minor offenses.  She distributed two handouts from the ACLU  about Colorado's jail population (Attachments D and E).

Rebecca Wallace, representing the ACLU of Colorado, testified in support of the bill.  She explained that it is a narrow bill that applies to crimes below a misdemeanor, petty offenses, traffic offenses, and municipal offenses.  She noted how only the poorest of the poor stay in jail for these offenses. She stressed the bill has received broad support from the community. 

02:10:48 PM  

Tristan Gorman, representing the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar, testified in support of the bill. She discussed the impact of jail time and the need to move people out of custody.  Maureen Cain, representing the Office of the State Public Defender, was available for questions. 

02:13:46 PM  

Bill Desomer, representing Disability Law Colorado, spoke in support of the bill.  He provided a brief history of disability law in Colorado and discussed the importance of stability factors for this population.

Amanda Bent, representing the Drug Policy Alliance, testified in support of the bill. She explained how substance abuse and criminal activity is exacerbated by poverty. 

02:19:20 PM  

Claire Levy, representing the Colorado Center on Law and Poverty, testified in support of the bill.  She discussed the financial consequences of holding someone in jail for low-level offenses.

Hazel Newman, representing herself as an 8th grader at Stanley British Primary School, testified in support of the bill.  She read a statement from Lisa Nobles of the Colorado Freedom Fund that highlighted the repercussions of keeping people in jail for low-level offenses.

02:26:41 PM  

Elisabeth Epps, representing the Colorado Freedom Fund, testified in favor of the bill.  She distributed a handout regarding organizations in support of the bill (Attachment F).  She discussed her work getting people out of jail. 



02:38:52 PM
Motion Refer House Bill 19-1225 to the Committee of the Whole and with a recommendation that it be placed on the consent calendar.
Moved Lee
Seconded
Cooke Yes
Gardner Yes
Rodriguez Yes
Gonzales Yes
Lee Yes
Final YES: 5   NO: 0   EXC: 0   ABS:  0   FINAL ACTION:  PASS






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