The First Regular Session of Colorado’s 74th General Assembly kicked off January 9, 2023. We will update this page throughout the session to reflect Colorado Center on Law and Policy’s anti-poverty priorities and, as new bills are introduced, our positions on them.


CCLP’s priorities for 2023

HB23-1126: Medical Debt Credit Reporting Protections

One in 8 Coloradans (12.1%) has medical debt in collections. Here in Colorado, medical debt is also reported on consumer reports and credit reports. This compounds the harm for those facing debt, by impacting financial health and reducing economic stability, creating barriers for affected individuals wherever consumer reports are used.

HB23-1126 would improve the credit reporting situation for 700,000 Coloradans by:

  • Stopping medical debt from being included on credit reports by adding it to the list of types of information that consumer reporting agencies are not allowed to report.
  • Ensuring more Coloradans’ personal information is protected by narrowing the circumstances when otherwise protected information can be shared.
  • Informing impacted consumers about their new rights by requiring debt collectors to notify Coloradans with medical debt that medical debt can no longer be included on credit reports, except under narrow circumstances.

CCLP is proud to SUPPORT HB23-1126, learn more on our HB1126 action page here.

HB23-1112: Income tax credits for struggling families

Workers in the lowest paid jobs can’t afford to meet basic needs. Those with young children face the biggest gap between earnings and cost of basic needs. A new bill could increase the State Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and increase the State Child Tax Credit (CTC). These two tax credits have been proven effective in reducing poverty.

HB23-1112 would bolster both of these tax credits by increasing the credits a Coloradan can claim. For income tax years commencing on or after January 1, 2024, the bill increases the earned income tax credit that a resident individual can claim on their state income tax return to 40% of the federal credit claimed on the resident individual’s federal income tax return. For income tax years commencing on or after January 1, 2024, the bill changes the definition of “eligible child” to match the age of eligibility for the federal credit, increases percentages of the federal credit that a resident individual can claim for the child tax credit on their state income tax return by 20%, 10%, or 5% depending on the resident individual’s income level, and requires the department of revenue to adjust for inflation the income levels set forth to determine eligibility for the credit.


CCLP SUPPORTS HB23-1112 in expanding income tax credits for struggling families. Read more about HB23-1112 here and about HB23-1112 EITC & CTC Expansion Fact Sheet (Fact sheet provided by Colorado Fiscal Institute.)

HB23-1124: Funding SNAP E&T

Bill sponsors: Rep. Mandy Lindsay and Sen. Rhonda Fields.

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program’s Employment and Training component (SNAP E&T) provides training and support services for SNAP-eligible individuals. This bill proposes to expand that training and support, and expand funding for new and existing third-party partners to provide these services. This bill will renew the funding for enhanced training, employment and support services for a further 2 years, providing $3 million in additional state funding over that time, and drawing down an additional $3m in federal funding. These are much-needed resources as the pandemic’s Public Health Emergency draws to a close.

HB23-1124 requires the general assembly to annually appropriate $1.5 million from the general fund to the department of human services for continued employment support and job retention services and to continue to support work-based learning opportunities for Colorado employment first participants.


CCLP and the SKills2Compete – Colorado Coalition SUPPORT HB23-1124, funding SNAP E&T for Colorado. Read more on our new HB23-1124 SNAP E&T Fact Sheet. (PDF, updated 2023-02-01)

SB23-007: Adult Education

Sponsors: Senator Rachel Zenzinger, Senator Barbara Kirkmeyer, Representative Cathy Kipp, Representative Marc Catlin

300,000 Colorado adults lack a high school diploma. Many of the same individuals also have limited or no digital skills. Without these skills, people face limited job options, lower wages and challenges in daily activities. SB23-007 would help Coloradans by:

  • Making changes to adult education programs to better serve adults with less than a 9th grade education
  • Adding digital literacy as a core function of adult education
  • Allowing Community Colleges to grant high school diplomas to their own students.

CCLP SUPPORTS SB23-007, enhancing adult education in Colorado. Read SB23-007 Fact Sheet and endorsers (as of 4.14.23) and about Adult Education in Colorado here. (Both fact sheets provided by Spring Institute.)


HB23-1190: Affordable Housing Right of First Refusal

Sponsors: Representative Andrew Boesenecker, Representative Emily Sirota, Senator Faith Winter

Colorado has 160,597 extremely low-income renter households, but only has 46,219 affordable and available rental homes. The Right of First Refusal bill:

  • Preserves affordability for renters and prevents their displacement.
  • Keeps the seller in the driver’s seat and allows for competition. Local governments can match the selling price driven by the market.
  • Exempts certain transfers of property that are not open-market sales and waives transactions when the buyer agrees to affordability protections.
  • Promotes local control and governments can choose to participate. Nothing in this bill requires a local government to exercise its authority.
  • Will allow governments to put recent affordable housing funding (ARPA, Prop 123) to good use.

CCLP SUPPORTS HB23-1190, creating a right of first refusal for tenants of affordable housing. Read the HB23-1190 Fact Sheet and endorsers (Fact sheet updated March 21, 2023 and was provided by Maiker Housing Partners and Colorado Poverty Law Project.)


2023 State Legislation List

​Throughout the legislative session, CCLP compiles a list of bills concerning economic opportunity and poverty reduction. This list will include bill sponsors, assigned committees, and the organizations that have expressed their support for or opposition to each bill.

Updated June 8, 2023.

2023 Skills2Compete Workforce and Skills Legislation at the Capitol

The following bills in the 2023 Colorado General Assembly focus on some issues related to skills training for adult Colorado workers.

Updated June 9, 2023.

2023 Tenant Protections Bills

The following bills in the 2023 Colorado General Assembly focus on some issues related to tenant protections.

Updated June 9, 2023.

2023 Legislative Preview banner


To maintain health and well-being, people of all ages need access to quality health care that improves outcomes and reduces costs for the community. Health First Colorado, the state's Medicaid program, is public health insurance for low-income Coloradans who qualify. The program is funded jointly by a federal-state partnership and is administered by the Colorado Department of Health Care Policy & Financing.

Benefits of the program include behavioral health, dental services, emergency care, family planning services, hospitalization, laboratory services, maternity care, newborn care, outpatient care, prescription drugs, preventive and wellness services, primary care and rehabilitative services.

In tandem with the Affordable Care Act, Colorado expanded Medicaid eligibility in 2013 - providing hundreds of thousands of adults with incomes less than 133% FPL with health insurance for the first time increasing the health and economic well-being of these Coloradans. Most of the money for newly eligible Medicaid clients has been covered by the federal government, which will gradually decrease its contribution to 90% by 2020.

Other populations eligible for Medicaid include children, who qualify with income up to 142% FPL, pregnant women with household income under 195% FPL, and adults with dependent children with household income under 68% FPL.

Some analyses indicate that Colorado's investment in Medicaid will pay off in the long run by reducing spending on programs for the uninsured.


Hunger, though often invisible, affects everyone. It impacts people's physical, mental and emotional health and can be a culprit of obesity, depression, acute and chronic illnesses and other preventable medical conditions. Hunger also hinders education and productivity, not only stunting a child's overall well-being and academic achievement, but consuming an adult's ability to be a focused, industrious member of society. Even those who have never worried about having enough food experience the ripple effects of hunger, which seeps into our communities and erodes our state's economy.

Community resources like the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as Food Stamps, exist to ensure that families and individuals can purchase groceries, with the average benefit being about $1.40 per meal, per person.

Funding for SNAP comes from the USDA, but the administrative costs are split between local, state, and federal governments. Yet, the lack of investment in a strong, effective SNAP program impedes Colorado's progress in becoming the healthiest state in the nation and providing a better, brighter future for all. Indeed, Colorado ranks 44th in the nation for access to SNAP and lost out on more than $261 million in grocery sales due to a large access gap in SNAP enrollment.

See the Food Assistance (SNAP) Benefit Calculator to get an estimate of your eligibility for food benefits.


Every child deserves the nutritional resources needed to get a healthy start on life both inside and outside the mother's womb. In particular, good nutrition and health care is critical for establishing a strong foundation that could affect a child's future physical and mental health, academic achievement and economic productivity. Likewise, the inability to access good nutrition and health care endangers the very integrity of that foundation.

The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) provides federal grants to states for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition information for low-income pregnant, breastfeeding and non-breastfeeding postpartum women and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk.

Research has shown that WIC has played an important role in improving birth outcomes and containing health care costs, resulting in longer pregnancies, fewer infant deaths, a greater likelihood of receiving prenatal care, improved infant-feeding practices, and immunization rates

Financial Security:
Colorado Works

In building a foundation for self-sufficiency, some Colorado families need some extra tools to ensure they can weather challenging financial circumstances and obtain basic resources to help them and their communities reach their potential.

Colorado Works is Colorado's Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program and provides public assistance to families in need. The Colorado Works program is designed to assist participants in becoming self-sufficient by strengthening the economic and social stability of families. The program provides monthly cash assistance and support services to eligible Colorado families.

The program is primarily funded by a federal block grant to the state. Counties also contribute about 20% of the cost.


Child care is a must for working families. Along with ensuring that parents can work or obtain job skills training to improve their families' economic security, studies show that quality child care improves children's academic performance, career development and health outcomes.

Yet despite these proven benefits, low-income families often struggle with the cost of child care. Colorado ranks among the top 10 most expensive states in the country for center-based child care. For families with an infant, full-time enrollment at a child care center cost an average of $15,140 a year-or about three-quarters of the total income of a family of three living at the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).

The Colorado Child Care Assistance Program (CCCAP) provides child care assistance to parents who are working, searching for employment or participating in training, and parents who are enrolled in the Colorado Works Program and need child care services to support their efforts toward self-sufficiency. Most of the money for CCCAP comes from the federal Child Care and Development Fund. Each county can set their own income eligibility limit as long as it is at or above 165% of the federal poverty level and does not exceed 85% of area median income.

Unfortunately, while the need is growing, only an estimated one-quarter of all eligible children in the state are served by CCCAP. Low reimbursement rates have also resulted in fewer providers willing to accept CCCAP subsidies.