Coloradans for Practical Policies Objects to Burdensome Regulations

The coalition called for practical solutions and approaches to the EPA’s downgrade of the nonattainment zone’s status

The Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce has taken the lead in forming the Coloradans for Practical Policies coalition, which represents 12 industries with more than 400,000 employees across Colorado. Members of the coalition are dedicated to implementing practical solutions on issues impacting Coloradans’ quality of life. Coloradans for Practical Policies is invested in preserving Colorado’s environment and improving our air quality, while also implementing business friendly policy that benefits all Coloradans.

In April of this year, the EPA moved to declare the Northern Front Range and Metro Denver a “severe” violator of federal ozone standards. In mid-September, the EPA officially downgraded the region that contains Denver, Boulder, Greeley, Fort Collins and Loveland to “severe” violators of federal ozone standards.

This decision has consequences that create burdensome regulations for Colorado residents and businesses.

Coloradans for Practical Policies believes that prescriptive, one-size-fits-all state implementation plans will have adverse effects on the community and are less effective than state and local initiatives that are tailored to local concerns.

The Air Quality Control Commission recently held a hearing to discuss the EPA’s reclassification of the Northern Front Range and Metro Denver nonattainment zones. The reclassification will force Front Range drivers to pay an estimated extra 50 cents or more per gallon for “reformulated gasoline,” which is thought to reduce air pollution. This transition would cost Colorado residents and businesses upwards of $800 million for a product with only minor emissions differences from modern conventional gasoline.

It is also unlikely that an oil and gas manufacturer will produce and sell a different product, such as reformulated gasoline, just for the Northern Front Range while also producing and selling conventional gasoline for the remainder of the state. Rather, it is suspected that in-state manufacturers will exclusively produce reformulated gasoline for the entire state, subjecting areas that are in compliance to the costs associated with noncompliance regulation. Additionally, 70% of Colorado’s gasoline comes comes from out of state manufacturers. Given that reformulated gasoline is more expensive to produce and ship out of state than conventional gasoline, manufacturers might choose to leave our market entirely.

Front-line workers and low-income communities will be the most impacted by these additional cost burdens and an uncertain supply chain.

Coloradans for Practical Policies submitted formal comments at the Air Quality Control Commission Ozone rulemaking hearing, expressing additional concerns about the regulations that will come from this downgrade.

​​​​​​Governor Jared Polis also submitted a formal letter to the EPA expressing his opposition to reformulated gasoline being deployed within the Metro Denver and Northern Front range nonattainment zones. Polis stated that he hopes the EPA will work with him for a solution that better addresses air quality without having to implement reformulated gasoline. He also included that Colorado, “is not under a required deadline to propose challenges to reformulated gasoline or the reclassification more broadly,” and that he will, “pursue any opportunity available, including legal means, to avoid or delay the [reformulated gasoline] mandate.”

The Colorado Sun reported that the EPA will not exempt Colorado from a reformulated gasoline requirement, despite the Polis administration threatening legal action.
Coloradans for Practical Policies urges Colorado to avoid unnecessary regulations, let existing state ozone reduction policies have time to demonstrate impact, and recognize that some of the largest ozone contributors to our noncompliance are from matters beyond the state’s control, such as wildfires and international polluters.

If your organization is interested in joining Coloradans for Practical Policies, please contact the Chamber’s Government Affairs manager, Summer Hill, at


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Colorado Competitive Council Wraps Up Business Basecamps

The Colorado Competitive Council offers members unique opportunities to experience our state through different lenses. In their latest Business Basecamp, members traveled to the western slope for the Club 20 debates and mingled with state and federal candidates at the annual Club 20 Steak Fry.

Much of the debates centered on water policy, wildlife, environmental preservation and other rural issues. The Club 20 debates remain a staple of election year politics in Colorado, proving to be a terrific way for attendees to get informed on statewide issues.

This basecamp began the day in Rep. Monica Duran’s House District 24 at Warren Tech, which is an innovative campus for Jeffco high school students. The campus contributes to the state’s talent pipeline by training students on 32 different trades—including culinary arts, automotive mechanics, graphic design, video game design, cosmetology and more. This critical program trains and prepares the future of our workforce.

After this, members toured PorchLight, which is a family justice facility that opens its doors to victims of domestic violence. PorchLight serves as a model for other counties and municipalities to act as a location to co-locate resources and processes to ease the burden on victims, help them get justice, and provide more efficiency and empathy to guests who use the facility.

Members then toured Terumo Blood and Cell Technologies, an innovative company that has called Lakewood home since the 1920s. On this tour, members learned more about the mission of Terumo, its important investments in our community, and the innovative technological investment in research and development to find cures and treatments for blood diseases. The facility has been a staple of the community and provides life-saving treatment for patients in over 100 countries.

After such a wide-ranging tour of Rep. Duran’s House District, members got a glimpse of the vibrant House District 3, represented by Rep. Meg Froelich. We began the tour at South Platte Renew, which is a wastewater treatment facility that services more than 300,000 residents living in south Metro Denver. The important work done at the facility, which keeps our cities and society running, was appreciated by our members, and the tour did a wonderful job shedding light on wastewater treatment processes.

The tour continued at Craig Hospital, where members were able to view the facility. They were impressed by the important work and healing being done at the organization, as Craig Hospital has been recognized as a top facility in the United States.

Brewability Lab was the final stop of the tour. The founder and owner of the brewery opened it with the mission of employing people with health conditions or impairments. The brewery is tailored for accessibility—braille on beer taps, added vibrations so hearing-impaired people can experience music, and the entire facility is designed to be inclusive for all guests. Brewability Lab, in downtown Englewood, serves as an important community gathering place and is a staple of the community.

As this year’s Business Basecamps come to a close, the Colorado Competitive Council wants to thank all the organizations who invest in its mission to strengthen business interests on a statewide scale. Basecamps serve as an integral part of this mission, bring understanding and context to members, and allow us to all learn more from each other. While this year’s Basecamps have come to a close, they look forward to seeing everyone for next year’s Business Basecamps!


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