The measures passed by Congress and signed by President Bill Clinton in 1996 "to end welfare as we know it" were heralded as a ticket to economic self-sufficiency. The poor would be encouraged to enter the workforce and eventually leave all welfare assistance behind.
But for most of the tens of thousands of working poor families in Colorado, the vision of self-sufficiency is elusive.
States this year are passing a slew of immigrant-friendly laws, a major change from the strict enforcement measures Arizona and other states approved just a few years ago.
The November elections that put immigration back on Congress' agenda also prompted the shift at the state level. Pro-immigrant measures that had been stalled for years got new life this spring, while courts have thwarted state efforts to crack down on illegal immigration.
It is important for all organizations to periodically step back, assess what they are doing, determine what is working and what is not, and identify the external forces that are bearing down on them. However, many organizations have experience with strategic planning efforts that are often long, time consuming and complex. The trick is to assess your organization effectively and efficiently so that strategies can be developed, decisions implemented and course corrections made.
(Photo with story shows Rich Jones at governor's signing ceremony.)
By Ed Sealover Denver Business Journal
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a law Monday that requires several state departments to work together to try to match workforce needs with the types of graduates that the state's colleges are producing.
WASHINGTON – Roughly 81,500 Coloradans will exhaust unemployment benefits in 2012 if the law that lengthens the time people can collect insurance is not renewed in the next two weeks, White House officials said Thursday.
The state-by-state analysis was released in a push to lean on Republican members of Congress to compromise during a tense day of bargaining on a package that would not only extend unemployment insurance, but also give payroll tax breaks to 160 million Americans.
If Colorado were to implement a statewide paid-sick-leave law, it could cost the state 14,000 jobs and $1.93 billion in reduced economic output over four years, according to a study by the National Federation of Independent Businesses.
No such statewide proposal exists. However, a municipal paid-sick-leave ordinance will appear on the Denver ballot in November.
An NFIB official said the federation did not calculate projected impacts of the Denver ordinance but chose to estimate statewide impacts in the event that a paid-sick-leave law is proposed for Colorado.
It's now officially legislative silly season, when every special interest group tries to claim their share of credit for various legislation that passed. This time it's the Big Government Bell Policy Center using ... wait for it ... an elementary school class to claim credit for legislation that funded the free school breakfast program for students who qualified for reduced price lunches. Problem is Senator Keith King was the one who did it, not Bell Policy.