Condo defects bill appears dead at Colorado Legislature

Photo: Condominiums in Lakewood (AP Photo)
Workers completing the facades on a row of condominiums in the Denver area.

A bill that sought to limit lawsuits over condominium construction defects appears dead for the session after a House committee on Monday failed to approve it.

Supporters fear that will mean new condo construction will continue to be sluggish and rental rates will keep going up.

Lakewood Mayor Bob Murphy said the state is on the verge of a housing crisis. He thought the bill would address that by encouraging condo development. Those units are generally the most affordable for young professionals, seniors and lower-income individuals.

“I use the word community building, not home building," Murphy said. "There are broad, broad implications to the lack of affordably-priced housing, owner-occupied housing and these are just some of them.”

The bill received bipartisan support in the Senate, but failed in the House committee controlled by Democrats.

Democratic House Speaker Dickey Lee Hullinghorst said she didn’t think the legislation would spur condo development. But thought it would harm home owners in combatting shoddy construction in court.

“That doesn't represent the average taxpayer in Colorado," Hullinghorst said. "That gives big corporate home builders a break and I'm not inclined to support that.”

Hullinghorst said the House is working on passing other viable efforts to deal with affordable housing before the session concludes on May 6.