#Coleg Notebook: The cycle of poverty meets the cycle of smoothie

The Cycle of Poverty

The Colorado House debated a series of poverty-related bills on Monday. First, lawmakers passed a ban on using Electronic Benefit Cards in strip clubs and weed dispensaries. Then, legislators battled over two measures to raise minimum wage. Rep. Daniel Kagan, D-Cherry Hills Village, used that juxtaposition to describe how the cycle of poverty costs taxpayers and debases the poor:

“After we impoverish them, and we subsidize them, we then humiliate them with rules that say: ‘You didn’t earn that money. We gave you that money, so you can’t use your benefits card in a strip club or a liquor store, because you are scrounging from us.’ So we impoverish, we subsidize, and we humiliate… I urge you to stop this cycle and start paying our lowest-earning workers a living wage, so we don’t have to subsidize them, and we don’t feel encouraged to humiliate them as well.”

Higher education victory for veterans

Measures to increase higher-education funding have not exactly been bipartisan this session. Democrats’ measures to give top Colorado high school students free in-state tuition, to cap tuition increases indefinitely and to make student loan repayments tax deductible have all failed on party lines.

But today, the House unanimously approved a measure that would extend in-state tuition to all Colorado veterans, their families and spouses. The change is required in order for the state to keep up with federal requirements. Feshman Rep. Jon Keyser, R-Morrison, presented a bill that snags $55 million in matching federal GI dollars to fund it.

Dr. Chaps takes aim at reporters in latest episode of “Pray in Jesus Name”

After inflammatory comments about the recent feticide in Longmont dominated last week’s headlines, Rep. Gordon Klingenschmitt, R-Colorado Springs, took to his televangelist series as alter ego Dr. Chaps to apologize for his comments and to decry the reporters who covered them.   

You’ll notice that The Colorado Independent’s columnist Mike Littwin has a starring role in the rebuttal portion of the show.

Hickenlooper gets his shake on

With textbook Hickenlooper charm, the state’s governor tweeted a special blend of goofiness and Colorado values with this carbon-neutral bike blender:

Image by J.K. Poon