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H_JUD_2016A 04/07/2016 01:38:31 PM Committee Summary

Final

STAFF SUMMARY OF MEETING



HOUSE COMMITTEE ON JUDICIARY

Date: 04/07/2016
ATTENDANCE
Time: 01:38 PM to 05:31 PM
Carver
*
Court
X
Place: HCR 0112
Foote
X
Lawrence
X
This Meeting was called to order by
Lundeen
X
Representative Kagan
Melton
X
Salazar
X
This Report was prepared by
Van Winkle
X
Bo Pogue
Willett
*
Lee
*
Kagan
X
X = Present, E = Excused, A = Absent, * = Present after roll call
Bills Addressed: Action Taken:
HB16-1307

HB16-1391

HB16-1307

SB16-085
Postponed Indefinitely

Referred to the Committee of the Whole

Postponed Indefinitely

Referred to the Committee of the Whole





01:39 PM -- HB16-1307



The committee was called to order. A quorum was present. Representative Melton, prime sponsor, presented House Bill 16-1307, concerning threats against persons at postsecondary education institutions. Representative Melton explained the effect of the bill and discussed its need. Representative Melton explained the effect of amendment L.004 (Attachment A). Representative Melton responded to questions regarding the penalties assessed for lodging threats under the bill, and the reasons why the scope of the bill is limited to postsecondary education institutions. Discussion ensued regarding the potential deterrent effect of the bill. The following persons testified regarding HB 16-1307:



16HouseJud0407AttachA.pdf16HouseJud0407AttachA.pdf



01:51 PM --
Dr. Nancy McCallin, representing the Colorado Community College System, and Dr. Steven Jordan, representing Metropolitan State University of Denver, testified in support of the bill. Dr. McCallin cited statistics on violence at postsecondary institutions, and discussed the benefits of increasing penalties for making threats at higher education institutions. Dr. McCallin cited incidents where threats were made against campuses, and the impact of these threats. Dr. Jordan discussed security issues at his university, and the nature of threats lodged against higher education institutions. He discussed disruptions caused by threats to higher education institutions.



















02:01 PM



Dr. McCallin responded to questions regarding differing standards for search warrants based on the severity of the crime, and the deterrent effect of HB 16-1307. Discussion ensued on this last point. Discussion followed regarding what constitutes an "invitee" under the bill.





02:11 PM



Dr. McCallin and Dr. Jordan responded to questions regarding why the scope of the bill is limited to postsecondary education institutions.





02:12 PM -- HB16-1391



Representative Pabon, prime sponsor, presented House Bill 16-1391, concerning a prohibition against nonattorneys providing legal services related to immigration matters. Representative Pabon explained the effect of the bill and discussed its need. Representative Pabon responded to questions regarding other laws that may cover the behavior that is criminalized by the bill. The following persons testified regarding HB 16-1391:



02:23 PM --
Ms. Nicole Ruiz, representing the Hispanic Affairs Project, testified remotely in support of the bill. Ms. Ruiz discussed the problem of notary fraud on the Western Slope, through which immigrants are fraudulently targeted, and cited examples of this fraud. Ms. Ruiz clarified the function of her organization, and the applicability of the bill to certain immigration statutes.



02:29 PM --
Ms. Imelda Mulholland, representing herself as an immigration attorney, testified remotely in support of the bill. Ms. Mulholland explained how fraudulent misrepresentation during the provision of services to immigrants has impacted her clients, and discussed the remedies provided by the bill. Ms. Mulholland responded to questions regarding the applicability of the bill to those participating in the U.S. guest worker program.



02:36 PM --
Ms. Alissa Gardenswartz, representing the Attorney General's Office, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Gardenswartz discussed the benefits of the bill in the area of combatting fraud. Ms. Gardenswartz responded to questions regarding the scope of the fraud addressed by the bill, and advice that notaries public may dispense to clients.



02:41 PM -- Ms. Cristina Saldivar, representing herself, testified in support of HB 16-1391. Ms. Saldivar explained how her family was impacted by fraud perpetrated by a notary public. Ms. Saldivar responded to questions regarding how the notary convinced her family to enlist the notary's services.



02:46 PM --
Ms. Denise Maes, representing the American Civil Liberties Union, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Maes discussed the impact of the fraud covered by the bill.



02:49 PM --
Mr. Erik Johnson, representing the Colorado Bar Association, testified in support of the bill. Mr. Johnson discussed the consumer protection aspects of the bill, and the need for additional tools to address the type of fraud covered by the bill. Mr. Johnson explained how the functions of a notary differ between the U.S. and other countries.



















02:55 PM --
Ms. Tricia Murphy, representing herself, testified in support of HB 16-1391. Ms. Murphy discussed the differing qualifications of notaries and attorneys, and the fraud perpetrated by notaries targeting immigrants.



02:57 PM --
Mr. Jeff Joseph, representing himself, testified in support of the bill. Mr. Joseph addressed questions raised during earlier discussion, and discussed the victims of notary fraud targeting immigrants. He discussed the scope of the problem.





03:01 PM



No amendments were offered to HB 16-1391. Representative Pabon provided closing remarks in support of the bill. Various committee members provided their positions on the bill. Representative Pabon responded to questions regarding the effect of certain provisions in the bill.

BILL: HB16-1391
TIME: 03:02:34 PM
MOVED: Court
MOTION: Refer House Bill 16-1391 to the Committee of the Whole. The motion passed on a vote of 7-4.
SECONDED: Salazar
VOTE
Carver
Yes
Court
Yes
Foote
Yes
Lawrence
No
Lundeen
No
Melton
Yes
Salazar
Yes
Van Winkle
No
Willett
No
Lee
Yes
Kagan
Yes
Final YES: 7 NO: 4 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS

































03:12 PM -- HB16-1307



The committee returned to hearing testimony on HB 16-1307. Committee members received a fact sheet supporting the bill, prepared by the Department of Higher Education (Attachment B). The following persons testified regarding the bill:



16HouseJud0407AttachB.pdf16HouseJud0407AttachB.pdf



03:15 PM --
Dr. John Nicoletti, representing the Colorado Community College System, testified in support of HB 16-1307. Dr. Nicoletti discussed the profiles of those who lodge threats against and commit violence at higher education institutions, and countermeasures that may be employed against these perpetrators. Dr. Nicoletti responded to questions regarding the countermeasures that may be taken against a felonious act versus an act triggering a misdemeanor. Dr. Nicoletti responded to further questions regarding actions that may be taken against those who may present a threat to a postsecondary education institution, and the impact of increasing criminal penalties on these types of perpetrators.





03:27 PM



Discussion ensued regarding the typical profile of a person who makes threats at postsecondary education institutions. Discussion returned to the potential effect of increasing the level of punishment for the activity covered by the bill. Dr. Nicoletti responded to questions regarding successes associated with legislation similar to HB 16-1307.



03:33 PM --
Ms. Carrie Thompson, representing the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar, testified in opposition to the bill. Ms. Thompson explained that the scope of the bill is too broad. Ms. Thompson responded to questions regarding the constitutionality of the bill, and her opinion of amendment L.004. Discussion ensued on this point. Discussion returned to differences in arrest warrants for felonies as compared to misdemeanors.





03:47 PM



Discussion ensued regarding jurisprudence surrounding threats, and the mens rea element for the crimes covered by the bill. Discussion followed regarding how a judge might rule on issuing warrants associated with the behavior addressed by HB 16-1307.





04:03 PM



Ms. Thompson responded to questions regarding the increased punishments associated with raising threats on higher education institution from a misdemeanor to a felony.



04:05 PM --
Ms. Denise Maes, representing the American Civil Liberties Union, testified in opposition to the bill. Ms. Maes explained that the bill violates the "true threat" doctrine, and questioned whether the bill will affect behavior. Ms. Maes responded to questions regarding constitutional challenges to existing law concerning threats to educational institutions, and the mens rea component of the crimes covered by the bill.















04:15 PM --
Ms. Susan Payne, representing the Safe2Tell Program, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Payne discussed the seriousness of making threats against higher education institutions, and the need for tools to address these threats. Ms. Payne discussed the benefits of increasing the charge for these threats to a felony. Discussion returned to the benefits of increasing the charge to a felony, and the scope of the problem addressed by the bill.





04:29 PM



Ms. Payne responded to questions regarding the potential for applying the felony charge for threats to K-12 institutions. Discussion ensued regarding the prioritizing of misdemeanors and felonies by law enforcement.



04:35 PM --
Ms. Lys Runnerstrom, representing the Twentieth Judicial District, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Runnerstrom distributed a written copy of her testimony to the committee (Attachment C).



16HouseJud0407AttachC.pdf16HouseJud0407AttachC.pdf



04:40 PM --
Mr. Andy Dorsey, representing Front Range Community College (FRCC), testified in support of the bill. Mr. Dorsey discussed the effects of closing a campus because of threats, concerns of students following threats, and a specific incident involving a threat against an FRCC campus.



04:44 PM --
Mr. Gosha Croitor, representing the FRCC Student Government, testified in support of the bill. He discussed threats against the school, and their effects on students.



04:47 PM --
Sheriff Chris Johnson, representing the County Sheriffs of Colorado, testified in support of HB 16-1307. Sheriff Johnson responded to questions regarding comparative levels of seriousness of crimes against property and persons.



04:52 PM --
Ms. Geri Anderson, representing Aims Community College, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Anderson explained why the bill does not apply to K-12 institutions, and how the bill creates an additional barrier that allows law enforcement to intervene.



04:56 PM --
Ms. Nancy Wahl, representing the Colorado Community College System, testified in support of the bill. Ms. Wahl explained that different jurisdictions treat threats differently. Discussion ensued regarding how elevating the proscribed behavior from a misdemeanor to a felony will change behavior.



































05:01 PM



Representative Melton explained the effect of amendment L.004. Discussion ensued regarding the targeting of individuals by threats under the amendment, as opposed to targeting higher education institutions. Mr. Jerry Barry, Office of Legislative Legal Services, provided input on the issue. Representative Melton clarified the intent of the bill.

BILL: HB16-1307
TIME: 05:02:05 PM
MOVED: Melton
MOTION: Adopt amendment L.004 (Attachment A). The motion failed on a vote of 5-6.
SECONDED: Lee
VOTE
Carver
Yes
Court
No
Foote
No
Lawrence
No
Lundeen
Yes
Melton
Yes
Salazar
No
Van Winkle
Yes
Willett
No
Lee
No
Kagan
Yes
YES: 5 NO: 6 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: FAIL





















































05:14 PM



Representative Melton provided closing remarks in support of HB 16-1307. Various committee members provided their positions on the bill.

BILL: HB16-1307
TIME: 05:15:06 PM
MOVED: Melton
MOTION: Refer House Bill 16-1307 to the Committee on Appropriations. The motion failed on a vote of 3-8.
SECONDED: Court
VOTE
Carver
No
Court
Yes
Foote
Yes
Lawrence
No
Lundeen
No
Melton
Yes
Salazar
No
Van Winkle
No
Willett
No
Lee
No
Kagan
No
YES: 3 NO: 8 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: FAIL



























































05:20 PM

BILL: HB16-1307
TIME: 05:20:20 PM
MOVED: Kagan
MOTION: Postpone House Bill 16-1307 indefinitely. The motion passed on a vote of 8-3.
SECONDED: Lee
VOTE
Carver
Yes
Court
No
Foote
No
Lawrence
Yes
Lundeen
Yes
Melton
No
Salazar
Yes
Van Winkle
Yes
Willett
Yes
Lee
Yes
Kagan
Yes
Final YES: 8 NO: 3 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS





05:21 PM -- SB16-085



Representative Willett, prime sponsor, presented Senate Bill 16-085, concerning the "Colorado Uniform Trust Decanting Act." Committee members received a fact sheet in support of the bill, prepared by the Uniform Law Commission (Attachment D). Representative Willett defined decanting, and explained the effect of the bill. The following person testified regarding SB 16-085:



16HouseJud0407AttachD.pdf16HouseJud0407AttachD.pdf



05:25 PM --
Mr. Stan Kent, representing the Uniform Law Commission of the Colorado Bar Association, testified in support of the bill. Mr. Kent responded to questions regarding the intent of the bill.

































05:30 PM



No amendments were offered to SB 16-085.

BILL: SB16-085
TIME: 05:30:22 PM
MOVED: Willett
MOTION: Refer Senate Bill 16-085 to the Committee of the Whole. The motion passed on a vote of 11-0.
SECONDED: Salazar
VOTE
Carver
Yes
Court
Yes
Foote
Yes
Lawrence
Yes
Lundeen
Yes
Melton
Yes
Salazar
Yes
Van Winkle
Yes
Willett
Yes
Lee
Yes
Kagan
Yes
Final YES: 11 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS





05:31 PM



The committee adjourned.


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