The Electeds Town Hall meeting with representation from Central, East Central, and Southeast Denver focused on updates from each of the representatives and featured an update from Senator Chris Hansen on budget issues being addressed by legislators.

Some of the more notable updates were:

  • Denver Public Schools (DPS)
    • Remote learning survey is up
      • Asking how families and kids are doing
      • Take the survey here
    • DPS is keeping up with health officials
      • Listening to what they have to say
    • DPS has their own School Performance Frameworks (SPF)
      • They are wanting feedback on this – you can give your opinion here
    • Senate going back into session May 25th
      • Biggest historical budget cut
        • $3.3 – 3.5 billion cut to general fund from a 14 billion budget total
      • Main focuses and priorities
        • Workers
        • Small businesses
      • There are 370 bills in the system – now they are prioritizing them
        • #1 – no brainers
        • #2 – need to consider seriously
        • #3 – last resort items
      • What will help?
        • State reserve fund of $800 million
        • CARES act dollars
      • What is hurting Colorado?
        • Gallagher amendment
          • Absence of business property taxes will be another approximate $350 million deficit
          • A lot of these taxes usually go to K-12 school system
        • TABOR amendment
          • Limits the amount of revenue the State of Colorado can retain and spend
        • It’s time to take a look at both these amendments because it’s hindering COVID-19 response at the legislative level
      • Hopeful a relief package will still come through
    • RTD update
      • Fare free until further notice
      • Ridership at 70% of normal
      • CARES act set aside funds for RTD
        • These are reimbursement funds though
          • They have to spend it first and then get the money paid back to RTD
        • Denver based ridership is the majority of riders now
          • Commuter & rail lines have dropped the most
        • If a bus is too full don’t board, a back up bus will follow along
        • On the next town hall COO will be joining to give more RTD updates
      • Denver is keeping some streets closed for pedestrian traffic through Labor Day
      • Restaurants considering using parking lots and sidewalks for patrons
      • Check out weareopendenver.com
        • Identify local business that are open around you!