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House GOP Newsletter  
Monday, March 07, 2016 Like 

♦To Refund or Not to Refund?

♦Video Weekly Update  ♦Upcoming Bills Press Releases In the News

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House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso - Loveland (51)

To Refund or Not to Refund?

By House Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso (R-Loveland)

The Hospital Provider Fee (HPF) has dominated many conversations at the legislature this session, but outside of the State Capitol, little is known about this issue. In short, the HPF is a budget maneuver that helps hospitals cover the ever increasing costs of Colorado's Medicaid program and uncompensated health care. So why has the HPF suddenly become such a contentious subject? The answer is simple; how the state classifies the HPF will determine whether Colorado taxpayers will receive their constitutionally-guaranteed refunds.

In 1992, Colorado voters approved the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights, or TABOR. TABOR is designed to limit the growth of government by capping the amount of money our state can keep each year. Any monies collected above the revenue limit must be refunded to Colorado taxpayers.

This leads us to one of the legislature's core debates this year: whether to reclassify the HPF as an enterprise and exempt it from TABOR. If we do this, the state will not exceed the revenue limit and there will be no refunds for Colorado taxpayers. Setting aside competing legal opinions as to the constitutionality of reclassifying the HPF, the ultimate question is who should decide if taxpayers get a refund—the government or the taxpayers. On one side of this issue stand Governor Hickenlooper and other Democrats, who want the state to keep your refunds. On the other side stands Republicans who support TABOR and believe keeping taxpayer refunds without asking taxpayers' permission violates the spirit and letter of the Colorado constitution.

The governor and other Democrats claim that making the HPF an enterprise will solve all Colorado's budget problems. The reality is the amount of money the Democrat's plan would produce is less than one percent of our state budget, and will make little impact on the many areas the Democrats claim it will fix. In my seven years at the legislature, our general fund revenue has grown more than 43 percent, nearly $3 billion dollars. With such substantial government growth, there is little evidence of a budget crisis; rather, a failure to prioritize existing funds for transportation and education has led Democrats to try to keep your refunds. Taking more money from taxpayers without their consent will not solve our challenges. We have the money and our budget is growing, but using some budget maneuver is definitely no substitute for responsible fiscal policy.

Thank you for taking the time to read our newsletter. If you have thoughts about the Hospital Provider Fee, please contact me. You can keep up with all of our caucus updates by following us on Twitterand Instagram, liking us on Facebook or visiting www.coloradohousegop.com.

Sincerely,

Brian DelGrosso

Weekly Update

Representative Don Coram (R-Montrose) discusses a bill signing and a disappointing party-line vote for this week's House GOP Weekly Update.

Click Here for more Weekly Updates and GOP videos.

 

Upcoming Bills

**Tuesday, March 8** 

Public Health Care and Human Services




Press Releases

In the News

 Tweets of the Week 

Bob Rankin
Fighting the good fight for NW Colorado.

Honored as Legislator of the Year by Mental Health America of Colorado.

Thanks for all of the "happy birthday wishes". Debbie and I spent the day having fun with five of our granddaughters. We had some great barrel races with stick horses on the lawn. Maintaining freedom in this Country for these kids makes it all worthwhile!

Capitol Pictures

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Minority Leader Brian DelGrosso (R-Loveland) speaks to the Colorado Rural Electric Association during their day at the Capitol.

Representative J Paul Brown (R-Ignacio), who operates a family sheep ranch in southern Colorado, thanks House Sergeants for a birthday gift: an antique shepherd's hook.

You can keep up with all of our updates by following us on Twitter, liking us on Facebook or visiting COHouseGOP.com.

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