Dave DaviaDave DaviaNovember 26, 20185min206

For months, news reports, candidates and politicos touted the countdown to election day. With the votes cast and results behind us, we can turn our collective attention to another milestone on the calendar that will have a huge impact on our economy – the holiday shopping season. While retailers across the state have been preparing for a busy season, they have also been plagued with a new cabal of bureaucratic red tape that threatens their success and presents an almost insurmountable challenge for many.

Joey BunchJoey BunchMay 26, 20174min461

Colorado’s top tax collector is moving on, but it’s not clear where. The governor’s office announced this week that Barbara Brohl is stepping down in August as executive director for the Colorado Department of Revenue.

Six years on the job, Brohl oversaw the Department of Revenue’s taxation division, the Division of Motor Vehicles, the state lottery, horse racing enforcement, automobile Dealers, gaming, liquor and tobacco, as well as the recreational and medical marijuana.

“Barb has provided strong leadership to the Department of Revenue,” Gov. John Hickenlooper said in a statement. “We will miss her steadfast and guiding hand, but wish her much success in the future.”

Questions to the governor’s office and the Department of Revenue about why Brohl is stepping down and what she’s doing next didn’t get a clear answer, but it didn’t sound like anybody has hard feelings.

In the governor’s press release, Brohl called her work as a tax collector “the opportunity of a lifetime and absolutely the best job I have ever had.”

“I have had the luck, the pleasure and the honor of leading a phenomenal team through it all, without whom none of this would have been possible. We have been able to accomplish so much in the past six years and I am very proud of where this department is today.”

The governor’s office said Brohl would still be on the job until August, when Hickenlooper will have only 16 more months left in office himslf.

I asked the Department of Revenue for more details and got a lengthier statement from Brohl:

“In the past 6 years I have had the pleasure of leading the Department of Revenue, I have been involved in some of the most interesting subjects – I oversaw the implementation of new systems in Tax, Lottery, and DMV. We have improved processes, added new functionality, and elevated customer service as a core value,” she said.

“In addition, I was a named party in a U.S. Supreme Court case – DMA v. Brohl; the DMV implemented SB13-251 driver licenses and IDs for residents who cannot demonstrate lawful presence; and the Liquor Enforcement Division has begun implementation of SB16-197 – the most comprehensive liquor legislation since prohibition,” Brohl continued.

“Finally, I was responsible for the rollout of the first-in-the-world commercial regulatory system for recreational marijuana. I co-chaired the Governor’s A64 Task Force and helped to set the policy, direction, and strategy for recreational marijuana in the state. As a result, I have consulted with governments all over the country and the world as they evaluate their own drug policy, and was an invited panelist at the United Nations in Vienna.

“I love this Department so it is with mixed emotions that I have decided it is time for me to see what is next for me. I am very proud of what I have accomplished at the Department and I’m looking forward to what the universe will involve me in next!”


Rachael WrightRachael WrightMarch 9, 201711min15

… Thirty Years Ago This Week in the Colorado Statesman … According to Don Barbarick, state meteorologist with the Colorado Department of Health’s air pollution division, the Town of Parker was a relative “fail-safe area” for Denver’s “brown cloud," the notorious billow of air pollution that settled across Denver's skyline. Parker was deemed safe because of its elevation, the general direction of winds, and because the brown cloud tended to veer towards the foothills west of Parker, according to experts. “It’s an entire metro-area problem,” said Charles Stevens, a physical scientist with the Environmental Protection Agency. “It’s not just Denver. You guys say, ‘I’ll move out and get away from it’ and pretty soon there are 10,000, 20,000, 30,000 people who move out to the same area and then you’ve got your own brown cloud.”


Amy StephensAmy StephensFebruary 22, 20174min1520

There is a lot of talk in the state house these days about taxes — from tax hikes on marijuana and new taxes for improved transportation to reduced taxes on business personal property and even eliminating taxes on some personal hygiene products. However, lawmakers may want to add one more tax-related issue to this robust debate — a reexamination of rules that would make the Department of Revenue privy to the personal online shopping habits of Coloradans.


Tom RamstackTom RamstackJanuary 9, 20177min430

Governor John Hickenlooper is developing a strategy for Colorado to capitalize on a U.S. Supreme Court ruling last month that would allow the state to collect tax from online sales. The Supreme Court upheld Colorado's "Amazon tax," which could allow the state to collect taxes on out-of-state internet sales. It requires online retailers to report their sales information to the Colorado Department of Revenue. Some businesses opposed the reporting requirement and the tax as a burden on interstate commerce that they say is forbidden by the Commerce Clause in the U.S. Constitution. The Clause prohibits state action that creates an “undue burden” on interstate commerce.

Colorado PoliticsColorado PoliticsNovember 21, 201614min573

DENVER — Let thanks giving begin! Happy Monday on the beginning of what will surely be a short work week for most of us. Whether you’re traveling or inviting company into your home … We hope it is a safe and peaceful holiday for you and yours. Putting comments from the Broadway cast of Hamilton aside, anti-Trump protests appear to have calmed a bit in recent days. Fewer demonstrations in the streets and more media introspection. We’ve included a few here that examine possible changes and impacts a Trump presidency will have on Colorado. Some reporters choosing to use the “F” word … Fear. Let’s get started!