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S_AGR_2017A 04/06/2017 Committee Summary

Final

STAFF SUMMARY OF MEETING



SENATE COMMITTEE ON AGRICULTURE, NATURAL RESOURCES, & ENERGY

Date: 04/06/2017
ATTENDANCE
Time: 01:37 PM to 06:33 PM
Cooke
X
Coram
X
Place: SCR 357
Court
X
Donovan
X
This Meeting was called to order by
Fenberg
X
Senator Sonnenberg
Fields
X
Jones
X
This Report was prepared by
Marble
X
David Beaujon
Scott
X
Baumgardner
X
Sonnenberg
X
X = Present, E = Excused, A = Absent, * = Present after roll call
Bills Addressed: Action Taken:
Conf 17-Water Quality Control Commission, Water Quality Control Commission

Role and activities of the Colorado Foundation for Water Education

SB17-235

SB17-271

HB17-1219

HB17-1233

HB17-1008
Favorably Refer to Full Senate

Briefing only

Postponed Indefinitely

Witness Testimony and/or Committee Discussion Only

Referred to the Committee of the Whole - Consent Calendar

Referred to the Committee of the Whole

Referred to the Committee of the Whole



01:38 PM - Confirmation: Water Quality Control Commission



Trisha Oath, Administrator for the Water Quality Control Commission, introduced the Governor's appointments to the Water Quality Control Commission and discussed the role of the commission.



01:38 PM



Barbara Biggs of Denver, reappointed for a term expiring February 15, 2019, discussed her experience and interest in serving another term on the Water Quality Control Commission (Attachment A).




170406 AttachA.pdf170406 AttachA.pdf



01:40 PM



Kevin Greer of Englewood, appointed for a term expiring February 15, 2019, discussed his experience and interest in serving on the Water Quality Control Commission (Attachment A).














01:40 PM



Fredrick Menzer of Breckenridge, appointed for a term expiring February 15, 2019, discussed his experience and interest in serving on the Water Quality Control Commission (Attachment A).




01:42 PM



Jane Clary of Centennial, appointed for a term expiring February 15, 2020, discussed her experience and interest in serving on the Water Quality Control Commission (Attachment A).



01:44 PM



David Baumgarten of Gunnison, reappointed for a term expiring February 15, 2020, and a representative who lives west of the Continental Divide, discussed his experience and interest in serving another term on the Water Quality Control Commission (Attachment A).

BILL: Conf 17-Water Quality Control Commission, Water Quality Control Commission
TIME: 01:46:58 PM
MOVED: Baumgardner
MOTION: Refer the appointment of to the Water Quality Control Commission, Water Quality Control Commission to the full Senate with a favorable recommendation. The motion passed on a vote of 10-1.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Cooke
Yes
Coram
Yes
Court
Yes
Donovan
Yes
Fenberg
Yes
Fields
Yes
Jones
Yes
Marble
No
Scott
Yes
Baumgardner
Yes
Sonnenberg
Yes
Final YES: 10 NO: 1 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS

01:48 PM -- Colorado Foundation for Water Education



Jayla Poppleton, Executive Director, Colorado Foundation for Water Education, discussed the role of the foundation and identified Citizen Guides to water policy and other information resources prepared by her organization. She also invited the committee to attend the CFWE President's reception on May 12, 2017.

















01:55 PM -- SB 17-235



Senator Crowder and Senator Todd, co-prime sponsors, described the provisions of Senate Bill 17-235 concerning a pilot project for seaplanes landing in state parks and distributed a resolution of the Colorado Aeronautical Board concerning seaplanes (Attachment B). Current Division of Parks and Wildlife rules prohibit seaplanes from landing in or taking off from state park bodies of water. No later than June 1, 2018, the division is required to create a pilot project that allows seaplanes to land on at least two lakes located at different state parks. The Parks and Wildlife Commission will choose lakes on which the use of motorboats is allowed and the division has the right to control the use of the surface. The seaplane is required to comply with all federal and state laws applicable to aircraft and vessels. Before a pilot lands on waters of the state at a state park the pilot is required to be certified in aquatic nuisance species identification, inspection, and decontamination techniques; land the seaplane at a specific Colorado airport for inspection and decontamination; communicate with park personnel where the seaplane will land; and purchase a park pass for that park. As long as the pilot does not land on another body of water, aquatic nuisance inspection and decontamination is only required every 30 days. The pilot project is repealed September 1, 2020.



170406 AttachB.pdf170406 AttachB.pdf



The following persons testified on the bill:



02:03 PM --
Kristin Green, Conservation Colorado, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of invasive species to Colorado water ways.



02:07 PM --
Chris George, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill .



02:09 PM --
Chris Gibbons, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill.



02:10 PM --
Less Gregor, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about overuse and crowding of Colorado's lakes.



02:11 PM --
Mark Keeft, Colorado Marine Dealers Association, spoke in opposition to the bill.



02:14 PM --
David Garacke, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about overuse and crowding of Colorado's lakes.



02:18 PM --
David Crowley, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about overuse and crowding of Colorado's lakes.



02:21 PM --
Dianna Orf, Colorado Water Congress, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of invasive species to Colorado water ways. She also discussed budget shortfalls in the state's aquatic nuisance species (ANS) program and responded to questions from the committee about ANS in other states and the basis for her opposition to the bill.



02:31 PM --
Brad Wind, Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways. He also discussed the cost of ANS control programs and responded to questions about the impact and challenge of controlling ANS





02:37 PM --
Elizabeth Brown, ANS Program Coordinator, Division of Parks and Wildlife, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways. She also discussed budget shortfalls in the state's ANS program due to declines in severance tax revenue and responded to questions from the committee about seaplanes on private lakes in Colorado and training for state ANS inspectors.



02:47 PM -- Keith Taylor, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about overuse and crowding of Colorado's lakes and the spread of ANS.



02:50 PM --
Margaret Taylor, Division of Parks and Wildlife, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways and the use of sea planes in Colorado during emergencies.



02:58 PM --
Justin Jones, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways. He also discussed measures and costs to mitigate the impact of ANS.



03:04 PM --
Michael Charpentier, Colorado Marine Dealers Association, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about overuse and crowding of Colorado's lakes.

.

03:05 PM --
Brandon Ranson, Denver Water, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways.



03:10 PM --
Chris Treese, Colorado River Water Conservation District, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways. He also responded to questions from the committee about ANS identified in Colorado waterways.



03:13 PM --
Jen Boulton, Audubon Society of Colorado, Colorado Trout Unlimited, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways.



03:16 PM --
Kellen Freidlander, Colorado Marine Dealers Association, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about overuse and crowding of Colorado's lakes and the spread of ANS.



03:19 PM --
Cleve Wortham, representing himself, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about over use and crowding of Colorado's lakes.



03:21 PM --
Pat Ratliff, South Metro Water Supply Authority, spoke in opposition to the bill and expressed concern about the spread of ANS to Colorado water ways.



03:22 PM --
Raymond Hawkins, Seaplane Pilots Association, spoke in support of the bill and distributed a checklist for seaplane inspections and a copy of his testimony (Attachment C). He also discussed seaplane landings on Lake Merideth, a private lake in Colorado, and responded to questions from the committee about certification for seaplane pilots, length of lake needed to takeoff land a seaplane, and environmental impacts from seaplanes.



170406 AttachC.pdf170406 AttachC.pdf



03:35 PM --
Gary Toby, Colorado Pilots Association, spoke in support of the bill and discussed certification and training for seaplane pilots and the risk of seaplanes colliding with boaters.











03:39 PM --
Ed Kleiman, Celtech, spoke in support of the bill and responded to prior testimony about ANS inspections and risks to boaters. He also discussed use of seaplanes for firefighting and responded to questions from the committee about amphibious planes used to fight wildfires.



03:50 PM --
Chris Swathwood, Colorado Aviation Business Association, spoke in support of the bill and discussed the regulation of seaplanes in other states.



03:54 PM --
Jessica Freeman, Colorado Agricultural Aviation Association, spoke in support of the bill and discussed use of seaplanes for firefighting. She also responded to questions from the committee about the risk of ANS being spread by seaplanes.



03:57 PM --
David Couch, UAS Colorado, spoke in support of the bill and discussed the use of seaplanes for firefighting.



03:59 PM --
Cheryl Baker, Lake Aircraft, spoke in support of the bill and discussed economic benefits of expanded use of seaplanes in Colorado. She also responded to questions from the committee about seaplane boat accidents.



04:02 PM --
John Mellema, representing himself, spoke in support of the bill.



04:09 PM --
Mr. Hawkins returned to respond to questions from the committee about the risk of ANS being spread by seaplanes.



04:10 PM



The chair closed testimony, and Senator Crowder and Senator Todd closed their remarks on the bill.

BILL: SB17-235
TIME: 04:19:09 PM
MOVED: Sonnenberg
MOTION: Refer Senate Bill 17-235 to the Committee on Appropriations. The motion failed on a vote of 4-7.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Cooke
Yes
Coram
No
Court
No
Donovan
No
Fenberg
No
Fields
No
Jones
No
Marble
Yes
Scott
Yes
Baumgardner
No
Sonnenberg
Yes
Final YES: 4 NO: 7 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: FAIL






BILL: SB17-235
TIME: 04:22:42 PM
MOVED: Baumgardner
MOTION: Postpone Senate Bill 17-235 indefinitely using a reversal of the previous roll call. There was no objection to the use of the reverse roll call, therefore, the bill was postponed indefinitely. The motion passed without objection.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Cooke
Coram
Court
Donovan
Fenberg
Fields
Jones
Marble
Scott
Baumgardner
Sonnenberg
Final YES: 0 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION:



04:23 PM -- SB 17-271



Senator Cook, prime sponsor, described the provisions of Senate Bill 17-271 concerning investor-owned utility cost recovery transparency. The bill requires an investor-owned utility to provide an applicant who is applying for a service extension for his or her property a written cost estimate and work schedule within 35 days of receiving the application. The utility may not commence work until the applicant signs and returns the estimate and schedule along with the payment of estimated costs. When the utility completes the service extension work, it must send the applicant an itemized statement of actual costs. If these costs exceed the estimate, the applicant is required to pay the utility the difference within 35 days of receipt. If costs are less than the estimate, the utility must refund the difference; no timeline is set in the bill for the utility refund. The bill also establishes procedures for adding properties to the service line extension, reimbursing property owners that have already paid a portion of the costs of the extended service line, and a mechanism for enforcing the procedures set forth in the bill.



The following persons testified on the bill:



04:29 PM --
Ted Neimi, Xcel Energy, spoke in opposition to the bill and explained that his company is involved in certain litigation that he may not be able to address. He also responded to questions from the committee about his opposition to the bill.



04:34 PM --
Mitch Peebley, Black Hills Energy, spoke in opposition to the bill and responded to prior questions from the committee regarding service extensions and other issues.



04:44 PM --
Bret Jones, Black Hills Energy, spoke in opposition to the bill and discussed the service extension process. He also responded to questions from the committee about the service extension application and complaint process.











04:57 PM --
Heidi Morgan, Black Hills Energy, spoke in opposition to the bill.



04:58 PM --
Kevin Kerrigan, Atmos Energy, spoke in opposition to the bill and discussed his company's service extension policies. He also responded to questions from the committee about the service extension process, the reason his company is opposed to the bill, and the effect of the bill on other ratepayers.



05:03 PM --
Bill Skewes, Colorado Association of Commerce and Industry, spoke in opposition to the bill.



05:09 PM --
Chris Elliot, Colorado Builds, spoke in support of the bill and discussed the master planning process and the utility extension process for such developments. He also responded to questions from the committee about the service extension process.



05:16 PM --
Tom Brinkman, Colorado Builds, spoke in support of the bill and discussed the master planning process and the utility extension process for such developments. He also responded to questions from the committee about the service extension process.



05:21 PM --
Bill Angelovic, Remington Homes, spoke in support of the bill and discussed costs related to utility service delays.



05:25 PM --
Rip Reid, RRR Ventures, spoke in support of the bill.



05:29 PM --
Rich Corbetta, Colorado Builds, spoke in support of the bill.



05:33 PM --
Mr. Neimi returned to answer questions from the committee about prior testimony in support of the bill and the PUC complaint process.



05:43 PM



The chair closed testimony, and the bill was laid over.



05:43 PM -- HB 17-1219



Senator Crowder and Senator Donovan, co-prime sponsors, described the provisions of House Bill 17-1219 that extends the Colorado Water Conservation Board (CWCB) fallowing and leasing pilot program. Under current law, the CWCB in the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) administers a pilot program to demonstrate the practice of fallowing irrigated agricultural land and temporarily leasing the associated water rights. Fallowing refers to the practice of leaving plowed agricultural land unseeded for one or more growing seasons. Current law allows the CWCB to authorize up to ten projects with a duration of ten years each. Of these ten projects, the CWCB may authorize no more than three projects in any one of the four major river basins: the South Platte, the Arkansas, the Rio Grande, and the Colorado. Applications to sponsor a pilot project must be received by the CWCB no later than December 31, 2018. All pilot projects must be completed by 2029. This bill makes the following changes to the program: the CWCB may authorize up to 15 pilot projects;. no more than five pilot projects may be located in any one of the four major river basins; applications to sponsor a project must be received by December 31, 2023; and all projects must be completed by 2034.





The following persons testified on the bill:



05:45 PM -- Dr. John Stulp, Water Policy Advisor for the Governor, testified in support of the bill and explained the need for the pilot projects. Dr. Stulp responded to questions from the committee regarding the pilot program and the need to extend it by five years. He also explained that the Catlin Pilot Project in the Lower Arkansas River Basin is currently the only pilot project in the state.



05:52 PM -- Glen Hirakata, Hirikata Farms, spoke in support of the bill and explained he is a participant in the Catlin Pilot Project in the Lower Arkansas River Basin.



05:54 PM --
Jen Boulton, Colorado Audubon Society, Colorado Trout Unlimited, spoke in support of the bill.



05:54 PM --
Chris Treese, Colorado River Water Conservation District, spoke in support of the bill.



05:56 PM --
Leah Martinsson, Lower Arkansas Valley Water Conservancy District, spoke in support of the bill and explained why more pilot projects have not been implemented.



06:00 PM -- Dianna Orf, Colorado Water Congress, spoke in support of the bill.



06:01 PM



The chair closed testimony, and Senator Crowder and Senator Donovan closed their remarks on the bill.

BILL: HB17-1219
TIME: 06:02:34 PM
MOVED: Donovan
MOTION: Refer House Bill 17-1219 to the Committee of the Whole with a recommendation that it be placed on the consent calendar. The motion passed on a vote of 11-0.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Cooke
Yes
Coram
Yes
Court
Yes
Donovan
Yes
Fenberg
Yes
Fields
Yes
Jones
Yes
Marble
Yes
Scott
Yes
Baumgardner
Yes
Sonnenberg
Yes
Final YES: 11 NO: 0 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS









06:03 PM -- HB 17-1233



Senator Crowder, prime sponsor, described the provisions of House Bill 17-1233 concerning protection of water historical consumptive use analysis. Under current law, if the owner of a water right brings an action to water court to change the amount of water the owner may use, the amount of water that can be changed is limited to the historical consumptive use of water under the water right. Water usage that results from participation in a government-sponsored water conservation program is not considered in determining the historical consumptive use in water divisions 4, 5, or 6. The bill applies this rule statewide to include water divisions 1, 2, 3, and 7. The bill clarifies that water conservation projects include pilot projects, and that the applicable government-sponsored program approved by a state agency are limited to those with explicit statutory jurisdiction over water conservation or water rights.



The following persons testified on the bill:



06:05 PM -- Glen Hirikata, Hirikata Farms, spoke in support of the bill and explained that he has a farm in the Lower Arkansas River Basin.



06:06 PM --
Dr. John Stulp, Water Policy Advisor for the Governor, spoke in support of the bill and stated that the purpose of the legislation is to protect water users from future quantification of their water rights due to participation in a government sponsored program. He also discussed a program near the Town of Gilcrest to address high groundwater and how it would benefit from this bill and responded to questions from the committee about groundwater and surface water use in this area.



06:18 PM -- Dianna Orf, Colorado Water Congress, spoke in support of the bill.



06:19 PM --
Chris Treese, Colorado River Water Conservation District, spoke in support of the bill and responded to questions from the committee about the implementation of previous legislation related to water conservation.



06:21 PM --
Jim Miggs, representing himself, discussed recent legislation to authorize the use of rain barrels and proposed an amendment to expand the use of precipitation harvest.





06:24 PM



The chair closed testimony, and Senator Crowder closed his remarks on the bill.

BILL: HB17-1233
TIME: 06:25:41 PM
MOVED: Donovan
MOTION: Refer House Bill 17-1233 to the Committee of the Whole. The motion passed on a vote of 6-5.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Cooke
No
Coram
No
Court
Yes
Donovan
Yes
Fenberg
Yes
Fields
Yes
Jones
Yes
Marble
Yes
Scott
No
Baumgardner
No
Sonnenberg
No
Final YES: 6 NO: 5 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS



06:27 PM -- HB 17-1008



Senator Sonnenberg, prime sponsor, described the provisions of House Bill 17-1008 concerning greywater regulation exemptions for scientific research. Under current law, the Water Quality Control Commission (commission) in the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) adopts rules concerning water quality. One set of rules has been adopted for the control and use of graywater. Graywater refers to wastewater that, prior to being treated or combined with other wastewater, is collected from certain fixtures within residential, commercial, or industrial buildings for a beneficial use. This bill, recommended by the Water Resources Review Committee, authorizes the use of graywater for scientific research involving human subjects, and sets minimum requirements for conducting such research. Research must be conducted on behalf of an educational institution. Graywater research conducted pursuant to this bill's authority need not comply with the commission's water quality control regulations.



The following persons testified on the bill:



06:28 PM --
Dianna Orf, Colorado Water Congress, spoke in support of the bill.



06:29 PM --
Jim Miggs, representing himself, discussed the benefits of greywater use to help save water.





06:30 PM



The chair closed testimony on the bill.

BILL: HB17-1008
TIME: 06:31:45 PM
MOVED: Sonnenberg
MOTION: Refer House Bill 17-1008 to the Committee of the Whole. The motion passed on a vote of 10-1.
SECONDED:
VOTE
Cooke
Yes
Coram
Yes
Court
Yes
Donovan
Yes
Fenberg
Yes
Fields
Yes
Jones
No
Marble
Yes
Scott
Yes
Baumgardner
Yes
Sonnenberg
Yes
Final YES: 10 NO: 1 EXC: 0 ABS: 0 FINAL ACTION: PASS



06:33 PM



The committee adjourned.