Temporary Adjournment of General Assembly Continues
Senate Democrats follow the guidance of public health experts and refrain from gathering
Denver, CO – Today the Senate President procedurally convened the chamber in order to extend the legislature’s temporary suspension due to the ongoing public health crisis.
On March 14, 2020, the General Assembly voted to temporarily adjourn the legislative session until March 30, in the interest of public safety. With the increase of COVID-19 cases in Colorado, as well as the Governor’s standing statewide stay-at-home order, it remains clear that it is unsafe to resume lawmaking at this time. Therefore, the General Assembly has decided to continue the suspension.
In accordance with the guidance of public health experts, Senate Democrats made the decision to refrain from gathering in the Capitol today.
“In the face of unprecedented risk to our community, the best thing we can do is support our medical professionals by staying home. We need to lead by example and honor the courageous work being done on the frontlines, not rigidly cling to technicalities,” said Majority Leader Steve Fenberg, D-Boulder. “There will be a time to return to do the people’s work that gets Colorado back on its feet, but for now we need to listen to our public health experts and work to ensure they have the resources and equipment they need to save lives.”
Currently, Colorado hospitals are set to pass critical care capacity by the end of April if strict social distancing measures are not adhered to. Therefore, as no rule, statute, or constitutional requirement exists that mandates the passing of a resolution to continue the General Assembly’s suspension, the Senate will stand adjourned, as it remains best practice to avoid large, unnecessary gatherings at all costs.
“With the continued spread of COVID-19 throughout Colorado, it is unsafe for us to officially reconvene the legislature at this time. Our work at the Capitol is critically important but not more important than the health and safety of our communities. As a practicing paramedic, I would be remiss not to drive home the dire nature of this pandemic and just how important it is to reduce transmission. It is clear that those who are advocating for anything less than complete compliance with the Governor’s orders along with the advice of Dr. Fauci and the CDC, are painfully out of touch with the severity of this situation,” said Senate President Leroy Garcia, D-Pueblo. “At the end of the day, we will come out of this stronger and more resilient than ever, but for the time being, the best thing we can do is be patient and diligently follow the guidance of our public health experts.”
Under Article V, Section 11 of the Colorado Constitution the Senate has again adjourned temporarily but will continue to monitor the situation closely to determine if and when a formal convening is safe or necessary.
# # #
About the Colorado Senate Democrats
The 19-member Senate Democratic Caucus for the 2020 legislative session includes Senators Leroy Garcia, Kerry Donovan, Pete Lee, Tammy Story, Julie Gonzales, Stephen Fenberg, Rachel Zenzinger, Jessie Danielson, Dominick Moreno, Brittany Pettersen, Jeff Bridges, Faith Winter, Nancy Todd, Joann Ginal, Mike Foote, Angela Williams, Rhonda Fields, Chris Hansen and Robert Rodriguez.