Please join us on January 30 for our third forum of the 2017 legislative session!
Colorado Secretary of State, Wayne Williams
Wayne Williams has served as Colorado’s Secretary of State since 2014. Prior to his election, Secretary Williams served as the El Paso County Clerk & Recorder from 2011 to 2015, where he oversaw efforts to expand services to citizens by adding more than a dozen 24/7 drop boxes and consistently running elections that were recognized as both cost-effective and voter-friendly. Before serving as county clerk, citizens of El Paso County elected Secretary Williams County Commissioner from 2003 to 2011 where he played a key role in obtaining approval of the Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority (PPRTA). Secretary Williams graduated from Brigham Young University in 1986 with honors and from the University of Virginia Law School in 1989. He lives in Colorado Springs with his wife, Holly, and they have four children.
Secretary Williams will present to the Colorado Social Legislation Committee on the implementation of Propositions 107 and 108, respectfully. Both propositions were passed by Colorado voters this past November and promise to profoundly impact the manner in which Colorado’s future elections are conducted. We are honored to have Secretary Williams present to CSLC and invite all members to attend what promises to be both an educational and entertaining event.
Where: Basement of First Baptist Church of Denver; 1373 Grant Street, Denver, CO 80203
When: January 30, 2017 12:00PM-1:15PM
Please join us on January 9 for our first weekly forum of the 2017 legislative session!
Featuring: Carol Hedges, Executive Director of the Colorado Fiscal Institute
Carol Hedges has been an important part of the research, policy and advocacy community in Colorado for more than 15 years. She served as policy director for Governor Roy Romer in the late 1990s focusing on human service, education and budget policy. As program officer at the Piton Foundation in Denver, Ms. Hedges directed the Denver Workforce Initiative, a project of the Annie E. Casey Jobs Initiative. While serving as a senior policy analyst with the Bell Policy Center, Ms. Hedges authored Ten Years of TABOR, a comprehensive study of the effects of Colorado’s Taxpayers Bill of Rights. As a recognized expert on the effects of Colorado’s TABOR amendment, Ms. Hedges has been involved in education efforts on TABOR-like proposals across the country.
Ms. Hedges will provide an insightful overview of the fiscal outlook in Colorado and the implications for Colorado’s legislators and advocates as they begin their work in 2017. We are thrilled to have Ms. Hedges present at our first weekly forum of the 2017 legislative session. Please be sure to attend what promises to be a fantastic presentation!
Where: Basement of First Baptist Church of Denver; 1373 Grant Street, Denver, CO 80203
When: January 9, 2017 12:00PM-1:30PM
LOS ANGELES — Escalating their battle to stamp out an unprecedented spread of street encampments, city officials have begun seizing tiny houses from homeless people in South Los Angeles.
Elvis Summers, who built and donated the structures, removed seven of the gaily painted wooden houses — which come with solar-powered lights and American flags — on Wednesday and Thursday ahead of a scheduled city sweep.
Summers, an L.A. resident who says he was once homeless, had placed them within encampments on overpasses along the 110 Freeway, for homeless people to use instead of tents.
But three structures impounded earlier this month remain in a city storage lot, a Bureau of Sanitation spokeswoman said, and the city notified occupants they would be “discarded.”
“These people are beaten down so hard, you give them any opportunity to be normal, it lifts them up,” Summers said.
Councilman Curren Price, who represents the neighborhood, said the houses pose serious health and safety risks.
“I’m getting complaints from constituents who have to walk into the streets to avoid them,” Price said.
Authorities destroyed needles, drug setups and a gun seized from one or more of the houses and tents during an earlier cleanup.
Some advocates for the homeless see the single-story structures — about the size of garden shed — as a cheap and safer alternative to having the homeless sleep on the sidewalks.
Neighbors and other opponents, however, say they provide cover for lawlessness and criminal activity.
“They are only homes for prostitution, shooting up, smoking up,” said June Ellen Richard, 54, who has lived all her life within blocks of one of the freeway overpasses where the tiny houses were parked.
Mayor Eric Garcetti’s spokeswoman, Connie Llanos, said he is committed to getting homeless people into permanent housing and services.
“Unfortunately, these structures can be hazardous to the individuals living in them and to the community at large,” Llanos said in a statement.
“When the city took the houses, they didn’t offer housing, they straight kicked them out,” Summers said.
The tiny house crackdown came as the city continues to struggle to balance enforcement with housing and other aid for the burgeoning homeless population.
The city passed a tough new sweeps ordinance that identified tiny houses as “bulky items” subject to immediate confiscation. More than 30,000 people sleep in city streets in Los Angeles County.
While the city also adopted a plan to end homelessness over the next decade, officials have not identified a source for money to tackle the $2 billion problem.
Summers said he has built and placed 37 tiny houses from Van Nuys to Inglewood, with help from volunteers and more than $100,000 in donations from people around the world drawn to his online video campaign.
“It’s not a permanent solution, but nobody is doing anything for shelter right now,” said Summers, who added that the houses should default to him rather than be destroyed. “They keep just saying we need permanent housing we’re, but it never happens.”
Price said there are alternatives including shelters but the tiny house people reject them.
Kenner Jackson, who lives in a tiny house with his wife, Becky, and terrier, Cowboy, said officials were “taking houses from people who need them right now. … Their plan isn’t anything.”
Jackson said the city hauled away homeless people’s possessions while leaving bulky items like mattresses and chairs that residents dump next to the freeway.
Johnny Horton, 60, whose heavily bandaged legs were scored with wounds from uncontrolled diabetes, wept silently Wednesday as he contemplated going back to sleeping in the street.
“Laying on that tent on the sidewalk it’s impossible to keep clean,” Horton said. He said the staff at the Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center, which discharged him Tuesday, said they’d try to get him housing, but it would take one to three months.
“I grew up in this neighborhood,” Horton said.
Posted on Julia Briggs Cannon’s tiny house next to the city impound notice were several fliers seeking the whereabouts of her husband, Larry Joe Cannon.
Cannon, 58, said her husband, a Vietnam-era Marine veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder and memory loss, was hospitalized with a seizure Feb. 5, then disappeared.
Cannon turned up Friday, but the couple’s house was gone. As Summers drove off with her house on a flat-bed trailer, she sat on a thin bedroll on the ground and pointed to the concrete.
“I’m staying right here,” she said, her eyes filling with tears.
Mission: The Colorado Social Legislation Committee is a coalition of persons and organizations interested in legislation related to human needs and human services, especially at the state level. CSLC is a non-partisan, all volunteer organization.
P.O. Box 300165
Denver, CO 80203
Request for CSLC Position on State Legislation
Request must be made by a CSLC member & be for a bill which has been introduced.
Desired Position: __ Support _____ Oppose
Person/Organization making the request:
This is our policy for bill endorsement/opposition:
Member requests CSLC to endorse/oppose one week.
The following week the request is discussed. Requesting member briefly states why CSLC should support or oppose. Other members are invited to briefly state why CSLC should support or oppose the bill. CSLC members should feel free to debate whether a requested position be taken as it reflects on our credibility and reputation. The purpose is not to rubberstamp a request, but to add our voice for legislation consistent with our values.
Members are ask to vote: (a) Do they support the bill? b. Do they oppose the bill? c. Do they prefer CSLC have no position on the bill? d. Do they abstain? An official position requires a majority of members present who vote that day.
When CSLC members have voted, CSLC may be listed among organizations supporting or opposing the legislation, and our position will be noted in the Executive Committee minutes and on the CSLC website.
If you are requesting that CSLC communicate its support/opposition to legislators, the following information must be provided. If this information is provided, CSLC’s Legislative Liaison will prepare a letter, signed by the CSLC President, for distribution to the Committee of Reference next scheduled to hear this bill. Please write one or two paragraphs that state 1) what the bill would do and 2) the primary reasons why CSLC should support or oppose the bill. (Fact sheets are welcome, but please do not attach a fact sheet in place of a summary).
What the bill will do
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A bill previously considered by the members and on which a position has been established by vote of the membership may be reconsidered when significant changes are made to the bill and it is again brought to the attention of the members of CSLC. An announcement and short justification for reconsideration shall be sent by email to the membership during the week prior to reconsideration and a vote taken at a regularly scheduled meeting of the membership. Form can be completed and given to or emailed to Diane Rich firstname.lastname@example.org