2024 Policy Positions


February 8, 2024

The Denver Foundation is proud to lend our voice to important issues that impact our community. Every year, we engage in policy proposals at the local and state level in the areas of economic opportunity, education, environment, housing, and transportation, and at the federal level on issues that the philanthropic and nonprofit sectors.

This year, there are several exciting policy proposals that will keep residents safe and healthy at home, preserve affordable housing options, and promote free transit during ozone season. 

We examine policy issues to ensure they align with the foundation priorities and our policy principles, which we developed based on our policy framework and feedback from nonprofit organizations, grantees, fundholders, and community members.   

Below are the policy positions we are taking during the 2024 legislative session: 

 

Df Grantpriorityicons Economic OpportunityEconomic Opportunity


We believe economic opportunity is achievable when the community has the tools and resources to build individual and community wealth. 

SB24-053: Racial Equity Study 

  • What this is about: This bill establishes a study that looks as state policy to determine any historical and ongoing effects of slavery and systemic racism on Black Coloradans.  
  • Why we care: It is imperative to understand these issues if we want to support racial equity. By collecting data and stories connected to the experience of Black Coloradans we can better understand how where policies have impacted wealth building, education, housing, and other important issues. 
  • Status: Passed Senate State, Veterans, & Military Affairs and referred to Senate Finance.  For more information about this policy, click here.

 

Environment, Climate, and Housing


We believe that environmental justice begins with targeted policy efforts and investments in under-resourced communities to address the impacts of climate change. 

We believe the continuum of housing programs designed to address affordable housing and homelessness should be well-funded and respond to the history of exclusionary housing policies.   

SB24-094- Safe Housing for Residential Tenants 

  • What this is about: This bill updates Colorado’s Warranty of Habitability law which requires landlords to maintain a minimum standard of healthy housing.  
  • Why we care:  Tenants deserve a clearer process to request repairs from landlords, such as fixing mold issues or sewage leaks. This bill also aims to increase access to cooling options during episodes of extreme heat, which will benefit individuals with a disability or prone to chronic health issues.  
  • Status: Introduced and referred to Senate Local Government and Housing. For more information about this policy, click here.
  • Other items: A fact sheet on the bill is available HERE. And you can read the press release about the bill introduction on our website.  

 

Df Grantpriorityicons HousingHousing


We believe the continuum of housing programs designed to address affordable housing and homelessness should be well-funded and respond to the history of exclusionary housing policies.   

HB24-1007: Prohibit Residential Occupancy Limits 

  • What this is about: This bill prevents local governments from enacting or enforcing limits on how many unrelated people can live together, unless there are health, safety, or welfare concerns.  
  • Why we care: This bill helps preserve affordable housing options, such as cooperatives or renting a room within a multi-room home. These housing options are inclusive and reduce barriers to individuals and families looking to find housing near their jobs, schools, or communities they grew up in.  This is a particularly important tool as we work to address the affordable housing crisis in Colorado. 
  • Status: Passed the House Transporation, Housing, and Local Government Committee, as amended, and awaiting consideration by the House of Representatives. For more information about this policy, click here.

HB24-1098 Cause Required for Eviction of Residential Tenant 

  • What this is about: This bill establishes a framework for when a landlord can legally evict a tenant. Such reasons include non-payment of rent, lease violations, or criminal activity.  
  • Why we care: The two most common self-reported causes of homelessness in Denver are inability to pay rent and eviction. This bill would give more Coloradans a greater sense of housing security, and a safe and stable place to call home, regardless of their zip code, race, or income level.    
  • Status: Introduced and will be considered in House Transporation, Housing, and Local Government Committee on 1/29. For more information about this policy proposal, click here.

HB24-1175: Local Goverments Rights to Property for Affordable Housing 

  • What this is about: This bill establishes a process for local governments to make offers to purchase existing affordable housing and market-rate multi-family developments that become available for sale.  
  • Why we care: Preserving the long-term affordability of existing properties will help increase Colorado’s affordable housing supply and mitigate the displacement of community members from their homes.  
  • Status: For more information about this policy proposal, click here. 

 

Df Grantpriorityicons TransportationTransportation


We believe that access to reliable and affordable public transportation options is a core function of a thriving community 

SB24-032: Methods to Increase the Use of Transit  

  • What this is about: This bill continues funding for free transit during ozone season, creates a youth fare-free transit grant program for the Regional Transporation District, and establishes a statewide transit pass exploratory committee.  
  • Why we care: Funding is a critical aspect of increasing transit access to individuals and families that are cost-burdened. This policy proposal continues programs that have been successful by investing more in our transit systems.  
  • Status: Passed the Senate Transportation and Energy Committee, as amendment, and referred to Senate Finance Committee. For more information about this policy proposal, click here.