Adams State hosts Gov. Hickenlooper in bill signing


Gov. Hickenlooper signs HB 16-144 into law, surrounded by veterans, local officials, and Adams State trustees.

Witnessed by a number of San Luis Valley veterans, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed into law HB 16-144 on the campus of Adams State University, May 27. The bill exempts from state property tax those veterans of the U.S. armed forces with a one-hundred percent, permanent disability, as determined by the Federal Department of Veterans Affairs. Also present were two bill sponsors, Dist. 62 Representative Ed Vigil and Dist. 32 Senator Larry Crowder, both of the San Luis Valley.

Hickenlooper also signed into law SB 16-153, which encourages Judicial District Nominating Commissions to give preference to candidates who reside within the county where a judgeship vacancy occurs. Bill sponsor Rep. James Wilson, of Salida, also attended the signing. Vigil & Crowder were also co-sponsors.

It is estimated HB 16-144 will positively affect 400-500 veterans statewide. Adams State alumnus Matt Martinez, a Marine veteran and Veterans Coordinator at the university, said, "I am glad this bill passed with bipartisan support. It will have an important impact in the San Luis Valley, which is home to more than 7,000 veterans." Also in attendance were three members of the Veterans at Adams State (VAAS), Eli Jarret, Joe Schlabach, and James Owens.

By Julie Waechter