As we gear up for another busy session in the Colorado General Assembly and carry forward support for critical legislation to advance sustainable and multimodal transportation once again, we’re recalling the great things you helped accomplish in 2022 through collective community input, advocacy, and outreach.
Two “Commuting” Bills that Moved the Needle on Traffic Congestion, Air Quality in 2022
During the 2022 session, environmental and sustainable transportation bills were introduced; many ended up being passed into law. The Colorado General Assembly voted to green-light two important bills aimed at moving the needle on traffic congestion and air quality by improving access for Coloradans to alternative transportation options.
To further incentivize businesses to continue to encourage alternative transportation in the workplace, the Alternative Transportation Options Tax Credit bill, HB 22-1026, replaced an existing income tax deduction for expenses incurred by employers when providing alternative transportation options to employees with a refundable income tax credit of 50% of such expenses for such employers. The credit is allowed for income tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2023, but before January 1, 2025. Commuting Solutions, in partnership with DRCOG’s Way to Go program, is offering employers in Colorado’s northwest region take advantage of this tax credit. Learn more about Colorado Clean Commute here.
The Colorado Assembly also passed SB22-180. This bill established a grant program in the Colorado Energy Office for the Northwest Regional Transportation District (RTD) and other state transit associations to make free train and bus fares available to the public for at least 30 days during ozone season, which can reduce exposure to air pollutants and improve the well-being of all Coloradans.
This bill allowed the Northwest’s RTD Regional Transportation District to launch its first zero-fare transit campaign, “Zero Fare for Better Air.” The statewide campaign covered the costs of transit fares for the entire month of August, when Colorado’s smog reaches peak ozone levels.
The Commuting Solutions board of directors took positions of support for both bills and others.
Bicycling Safety, Environmental Progress Among Other 2022 Legislative Wins
Another successful transportation campaign that came about through 2022 legislation was the Colorado Safety Stop law. This law allows Colorado bicyclists to legally proceed, safely of course, through state intersections. Under the new law, when an intersection is clear and a bicyclist has the right of way, “bicyclists ages 15 and older may now treat stop signs as yield signs and treat stop lights as stop signs,” according to BicycleColorado.
Even more pro-environment laws were passed by the CO Legislature in 2022: Bills governing everything from climate change to recycling, EVs to greenhouse gas emissions, were voted up. Colorado News Online has a partial rundown here of other successful bills passed in 2022.
Business, Civic Leaders Set to Convene for ‘14th Legislative Breakfast’ on January 5 to Ring in Colorado’s 2023 Legislative Session
We can’t take the legislative successes of 2022 for granted! As we look ahead to the next session, there’s more work ahead to bring to life our community’s top transportation priorities. Here’s how you can continue supporting the coming legislation that will provide for a cleaner, more accessible Colorado! You can discover what our community is prioritizing for the upcoming 2023 Colorado General Assembly at our 14th Legislative Breakfast on Jan. 5. This annual event features presentations from distinguished thought leaders and highlights Commuting Solutions and the Northwest Mayors & Commissioners Coalition’s legislative priorities. The breakfast serves as a key mechanism to further federal, state, and regional progress and collaboration in transportation. Register here.