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Campus gun bill advances, tax credits don’t

The Colorado House had a packed day Monday while the 35 senators took the day off the celebrate Presidents Day.

The full House spent more than three hours Monday again debating four Democratic gun-control measures, including House Bill 13-1226, which would ban carrying of concealed weapons on Colorado college campuses.

The House went into the late evening Friday on preliminary debate of the four bills.

The campus weapons ban passed 34-31 on Monday’s final vote, sending it and the other gun bills to the Senate, where an equally long number of hours will be consumed in debate in the next few weeks.

The long floor debate set back the afternoon meeting of the House Education Committee, which worked until past 5:30 p.m. on its agenda.

Here’s the rundown on what happened in committee:

House Bill 13-1176 – This was the House version of a Republican bill that would have allowed parents and donors to take income tax credits for private school tuition, donations to private school scholarships and for the cost of home-schooling students. The bill got a polite but fairly short hearing before the committee’s Democratic majority killed the bill 7-6. The Senate Education Committee killed a different version of the idea last week (see story).

House Bill 13-1165 – This measure would require the state community college system to create a “career pathway” program for students who want to be trained for careers in manufacturing industries. It’s sponsored by freshman Rep. Jim Wilson, R-Salida, a former superintendent, and it’s supported by the community college system and industry groups. Get the details here.

Some Democratic committee members rhetorically wrung their hands about the bill’s $1 million price tag, but the committee approved the bill 8-4, sending it to the House Appropriations Committee, which will decide on whether there’s enough money in the state budget for pay for it.

House Bill 13-1219 – This is the 2013 version of the annual bill to clean up various obsolete, conflicting or need-to-be-tweaked portions of state education law, recommended by the state Department of Education. The committee chewed on the bill for a while but passed it 13-0. Get the details on the measure in this legislative staff summary.

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