The 2020 legislative session in Colorado kicks off on January 8 and runs through May 6.

 

Bicycle Colorado will be there throughout, advocating for safety bills for bicyclists and other vulnerable road users. 

Our top priorities this year reflect the broad themes of our strategic plan. This year we’ll be working on legislation that will encourage safer road behaviors, create places to bike and expand the bicycling movement. 

We’ll work, for the fourth year in a row, to pass Colorado’s first “Hands-Free” or distracted driving bill; we’ll help introduce new legislation that will solidify your right-of-way in the bike lane, including through intersections; and we’ll fight legislation to ban automated enforcement technologies. We are also looking at legislative approaches to incentivize e-bike purchases, a statewide study of rail-trail opportunities, and ways to discourage hit and runs across Colorado. 

We’ll update this page regularly with information about the 2020 legislative session, so be sure to check back.

Together, with a unified voice, we can make a difference and continue to make Colorado the best place to ride a bike!

We support a clearer right-of-way for bicyclists

YES on Senate Bill 20-061, the bike lane bill

The latest: the bill was signed by Governor Jared Polis on Friday, March 20, 2020, becoming law! A big win for bicyclists. 

Currently, bike lanes are undefined in Colorado law. We want to change that.

Senate Bill 20-061, also known as the Bike Lane Bill, defines bike lanes in the law and adds protections for bicyclists riding in them. It will be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee this coming Monday, February 3. Your senator needs to hear from you in support of the legislation! 

The new definition establishes bike lanes as any portion of the roadway that has been designated by striping, signage or pavement markings. It also states that a bike lane continues through an intersection even when unmarked by the previously-mentioned tools.

In addition to defining bike lanes in Colorado law, Senate Bill 061 establishes that bicyclists have the right of way in the bike lane and drivers must yield the right-of-way to a bicyclist—whether they are making a turn, entering a parking spot, or simply idling out of the way of other motor vehicle traffic. Drivers who don’t yield the right-of-way to bicyclists will be subject to a new fine should this legislation pass, and if drivers in the bike lane are the cause of a crash they will be subject to additional careless driving penalties. The bill eliminates a current gray area regarding who has the right-of-way in an intersection between drivers turning and bicyclists going straight when involved in a crash.

We believe bicyclists in the bike lane should be prioritized and protected and the rules of the road should be clarified for bicyclists and drivers. Let your legislators know that you agree by sending them a note to the right. 

The bike lane bill is sponsored by Senator Mike Foote, with whom we worked to pass the Vulnerable Road User law last year, and Representative KC Becker, Speaker of the House. You can view the full bill text by clicking here

Thank you for your support!

See the full bill text here.

We support reducing distracted driving

YES on Senate Bill 20-065, the hands-free driving bill

The latest: the bill passed the Transportation and Energy Committee by a vote of 5-0. It now heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee. 

Your Senators need to hear from you!

Senate Appropriations Committee Members

Rachel Zenzinger, chair, district 19; Jefferson county

Dominick Moreno, vice chair, district 21; Adams county

Mike Foote, district 17; Boulder county

Bob Gardner, district 12; El Paso county

Julie Gonzales, district 34; Denver county

Chris Hansen, district 31; Arapahoe and Denver counties

Dennis Hisey, district 2; Clear Creek, El Paso, Fremont, Park and Teller counties

Bob Rankin, district 8; Garfield, Grand, Jackson, Moffat, Rio Blanco, Routt and Summit counties

Robert Rodriguez, district 32; Denver county

Rob Woodward, district 15; Larimer county

See the full bill text here.

Bicycle Colorado is proud to support the hands-free driving bill, aimed at decreasing distracted driving throughout Colorado. Addressing this issue is critical to improving the safety of our roads for all users. We need your help!

This issue and bill relate directly to Coloradans’ health and safety. Data from the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) indicates that 620 people died on Colorado roads in 2018 alone. Moreover, between 2012 and 2016, approximately 57,300 distracted-driving crashes occurred with an average of 40 distracted-distracted driving crashes occurring daily in 2016. Forty per day.

Current law prohibits the use of cellular phones while driving only for individuals who are under 18. This year’s hands-free bill:

  • Extends the prohibition to drivers of all ages;
  • Extends the existing prohibition of the use of wireless telephones to include all mobile electronic devices; and
  • Establishes the penalties as $50 and 2 points for a first violation, $100 and 2 points for a second violation, and $200 and 4 points for a third or subsequent violation
  • Creates an exception to the prohibition of the use of mobile electronic devices for drivers who use a mobile electronic device while a hands-free accessory is engaged; and
  • Repeals a sentence enhancement for a violation that causes bodily injury or death.

We believe this bill is critical to improving the safety of all road users, especially vulnerable users such as bicyclists and pedestrians, and we are committed to seeing it pass through the legislature. After the bill is introduced, please reach out and let your legislators know that this bill is critical to addressing our state’s rising crash and fatality rates but more so, ensuring the safety of Coloradans and visitors who travel on our state’s roads.

Bicycle Colorado
@BicycleColo

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  • We’ve heard from a lot of #BicycleColorado members and supporters lately about the joy they’ve felt while riding their bikes in recent days! Our next few posts will feature some of their stories. This one comes from Larry H: “Dixon Reservoir, W. Fort Collins, via my Alaskan Fatback! Note Bear Spray is now Cougar Spray!”
  • We’ve heard from a lot of #BicycleColorado members and supporters lately about the joy they’ve felt while riding their bikes in recent days! Our next few posts will feature some of their stories. This one comes from Carly N: “Just had to share that Baxter and I have definitely been enjoying some rides! Thanks for all you do!”
  • We’ve heard from a lot of #BicycleColorado members and supporters lately about the joy they’ve felt while riding their bikes in recent days! Our next few posts will feature some of their stories. This one comes from Jenny and Stan S.: “We went with 2 neighbors to Utah prior to the lockdown for solitary bike and hiking. Photos of blue/green MTB trail in Dead Horse State Park. The trails were empty and dry. The visitor center had too many people for my comfort. Later Utah visitor centers closed. Mercifully, most  bathrooms remained open.

We traveled with bleach spray, wipes, gloves, buffs, raincoats (to wear indoors!). We ate inside our car and motel room. PBJ and frozen turkey pot pies.”