This morning Governor Polis gave his State of the State speech in the House chambers surrounded by members of the General Assembly and invited guests. He began by touting successes from past years to protect women’s reproductive health care, ensuring Coloradans can love who they love, and welcoming migrants to our community. 
 
Then Governor Polis spoke to the need for affordable housing, touting the implementation efforts currently underway from last year’s investments and the need to break down government barriers to ensure all Coloradans can access housing as well as infrastructure including a statewide roads and transportation system. Much of his speech focused on efforts to adjust land use code to better allow for public private partnerships to create affordable housing. Governor Polis also touted accomplishments on reducing property taxes, adjustments to the homestead exemption, and his support for reducing the state income tax. 
 
The Governor’s remarks highlighted water and devastating climate events that continue to challenge communities all around the state including ranchers and farmers and those in the suburbs. The Governor’s remarks expressed increased urgency to invest in water planning grants and wildfire firefighting and prevention efforts. Governor Polis spoke to his continued commitment to achieve rapid gains to the state’s goals and ensuring clean options are affordable for our state, including energy creation, electric vehicles, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Governor Polis said that too often healthcare costs are much too high, forcing Coloradans to choose between basic needs and taking care of their families. He touted the Colorado Option plan enrollment numbers, expansion of CHP+ and passing pharmaceutical rebates on to consumers. In acknowledging that we have a lot more to do, Governor Polis spoke to the high cost of hospital care and the need to address cost transparency coupled with the high cost of prescription drugs. He said the “time is now” to hold middlemen accountable and reduce premiums for Coloradans. He said that some large hospitals are making record profits and paying zero taxes, and it's time we hold them accountable. 
 
Education remains a key priority of the Polis administration, and the Governor touted the Department of Early Childhood Education and free full day kindergarten as investments that are saving families money every year. This coupled with historic investments to buy down the budget stabilization factor, invest in math intervention, and high school diploma completion and workforce training are all areas of focus for him in the upcoming legislative session. 
 
Governor Polis took a moment of silence for the five lives lost in the horrific Club Q shooting in Colorado Springs and led a standing ovation for the two heroes who stopped the shooting and were guests in the gallery during today’s speech. He concluded his remarks by noting that he plans to work with the General Assembly to strengthen the current Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) gun law by expanding to district attorneys and others. 
 
The full text of Governor Polis’s 2023 State of the State address can be found here.