Governor to visit, sign geothermal bill May 30


Staff Writer

Next Friday, May 30, Gov. John Hickenlooper will visit Pagosa Springs to sign HB14-1222 — a bill concerning geothermal energy generation and financing — into law.

The ceremony at which Hickenlooper will sign the bill is scheduled to begin at 12:15 p.m. on May 30, in Centennial Park (behind the Archuleta County Courthouse). The ceremony is open to the public.

Centennial Park is the future site for the Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership’s facility.

Along with the governor, other dignitaries expected to be in attendance are Sen. Michael Bennet (D), Rep. Scott Tipton (R), Colorado Rep. Mike McLachlan (D), and Doug Hollet, director of geothermal technology for the U.S. Department of Energy.

Per Pagosa Springs Police Chief Bill Rockensock, 5th Street leading to the parking lot at Centennial Park will be closed from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Parking, however, will be available in the lot adjacent to the courthouse at the corner of 5th Street and U.S. 160.

HB14-1222, titled Clean Energy Private Activity Bonds, pertains specifically to geothermal generation and clean energy projects and aims to mitigate financial risk and enable local ownership of geothermal production. HB14-1222 modifies the existing C.R.S. 30-20-1203, which outlines eligible clean energy project financing, county approval and private activity bond financing.

The Colorado bill was sponsored by McLachlan in the House and Gail Schwartz (D) and Ellen Roberts (R) in the Senate.

It was sent to the governor on April 30. En route to the governor, the bill received 55 “yes” votes from Democrats and five from Republicans. It received 38 “no” votes from Republicans, with two Republicans excused.