DENVER – Senate Democrats killed Senator Owen Hill’s (R-Colorado Springs) Senate Bill 19-060, which would have increased the tax credit for educators who purchase supplies for their classrooms – from $250 to $750.
The legislation, which was supported by the Colorado Education Association, had a tumultuous journey as Senate Democrats refused to hear testimony during its first-scheduled committee hearing on January 31st. Teachers who arrived to testify in favor of the legislation were turned away, only to be unable to attend a second-scheduled hearing during the school day.
“I’m disappointed,” said Senator Paul Lundeen (R-Monument). “We had a chance to put money in teachers’ paychecks. Not lip service, actual money in teachers’ paychecks. This bill would have given $22 million back to Colorado teachers who are clearly motivated teachers.”
Senate Bill 19-060 died on a party-line vote and comes on the heels of Senate Democrats putting down Senate Bill 19-022, which would have provided bonuses to approximately half of Colorado’s teachers.
“Democrats keep saying the State isn’t doing enough for teachers, yet they’ve killed legislation to provide bonuses to half of Colorado’s teachers and have now killed legislation to provide a tax credit to them for the supplies they purchase,” said Senator Hill. “If they’re going to reject every serious proposal that puts money in the pockets of our teachers, then it’s time for them to stop pretending that they actually care.”