Federal spending deal includes $170 million for Colorado communities

United States Capitol
Mark Tenally/AP Photo
The United States Capitol building, east facade, at dawn is seen in this general view, Monday, Jan. 27, 2020, in Washington, D.C.

Included in today’s $1.5 trillion omnibus spending deal is over $170 million for projects and programs in Colorado.

The money will come through an old process, known as earmarks, but with a new name: Community Project Funding. Just as in the past, it’s funding requested by Senators and Representatives for projects in their state or districts.

Rep. Ed Perlmutter is “very happy” that all 10 of his requests were met.

“I mean these are things that will benefit different parts of the 7th congressional district dealing with law enforcement, roads, health care, we’ve got some stuff for education and health clinics.”

Leadership brought member-directed funding back to Congress after it was banned in 2011 when then-President Barack Obama and Republicans pushed to end the practice due to concerns over wasteful spending and budget deficits.

Now that the practice is back, but with more transparency to prevent waste and corruption, according to congressional leaders. Colorado Democrats made use of the member-directed funding opportunities by helping earmark about 100 projects for local governments, universities, hospitals, law enforcement and non-profits across the state.

Colorado Republicans have already shunned its return. And it’s possible Republicans will remove the practice once again if they gain control of the House next fall.

But for now, the practice is here to stay. And to make the process more transparent than in years past, all members of Congress must make public their requests, show need and prove no one in the member’s family would benefit from the funds.

Colorado Springs will see the most funding through military construction. Sen. Michael Bennet requested $30 million for a fitness center at Schriever Air Force Base, while Sen. John Hickenlooper asked for $24,726,000 for a New Cadet Prep School Dormitory for the U.S. Air Force Academy.

Several Colorado Democrats teamed up on requests. Bennet and Hickenlooper are listed on more than 60 requests, while Crow is on 9, DeGette on 10, Neguse on 10, and Perlmutter on 10.

While the funding is included in the bipartisan omnibus spending agreement, Congress has yet to pass the bill. That is expected to take several days. In the meantime, Congress is poised to pass another short-term continuing resolution to keep the government going. Government funding runs out on Friday.

Clinica Family Health for facilities and equipmentAdams County5,407,000Bennet
Adams County Food Bank Building PurchaseAdams County525,000Hickenlooper
Expanding Services to Domestic Violence VictimsAdams County2,000,000Perlmutter, Crow, Neguse
US Army Corps of Engineers: Corps of Engineers (Civil) Investigations Adams & Denver Counties, South Platte RiverAdams County and Denver400,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Early Childhood Council of the San Luis Valley to expand access to high-quality early childhood careAlamosa110,000Bennet
Adams State University for mechanical engineering laboratories, which may include the purchase of equipmentAlamosa1,100,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome for purchase of equipmentAurora950,000Crow
UC Health Trauma Services for an at-risk intervention and mentoring violence prevention program, including mental health treatment and other servicesAurora450,000Crow
Village Exchange Center Community Center Renovation ProjectAurora1,700,000Crow and Hickenlooper
Safe Outdoor SpacesAurora1,350,000Crow, Bennet and Hickenlooper
University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus for health workforce initiativeAurora1,000,000Crow, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Children’s Hospital Colorado, Anschutz Medical Campus for a health training initiativeAurora500,000Crow, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Community Mental Health Center for facilities and equipmentAurora1,000,000Crow
University of Colorado Boulder, JILA Laboratory EquipmentBoulder950,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Crisis Intervention Response InitiativeBoulder255,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
University of Colorado Boulder for college access and success initiativeBoulder275,000Neguse, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Airport Airfield Lighting ImprovementBroomfield270,000Perlmutter
Clear Creek County Collaborative Care CenterClear Creek County1,000,000Neguse and Hickenlooper
US Air Force Academy High-Bay Vehicle Maintenance: Unspecified Minor ConstructionColorado Springs4,360,000Bennet
Fund Pikes Peak United Way Family Success CenterColorado Springs250,000Bennet
US Air Force Academy New Cadet Prep School DormitoryColorado Springs24,726,000Hickenlooper
Colorado Wildfire Risk Reduction and Resilient Forests ProjectColorado State Forest Service3,650,000Bennet
Kids in Need of Dentistry (KIND) for facilities and equipmentCommerce City100,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Reaching HOPE to provide mental health services to trauma survivorsCommerce City321,000Hickenlooper
Commerce City Quiet ZonesCommerce City615,000Perlmutter
Kids First Health Care for facilities and equipmentCommerce City800,000Perlmutter and Hickenlooper
Craig Affordable Housing Infrastructure ProjectCraig979,000Bennet
Drinking Water and/or Clean Water Project for Water and Wastewater Emergency GeneratorsCraig1,080,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Mi Casa Resource Center for a workforce development programDenver20,000DeGette
Permanent supportive housing TGTHR CODenver2,000,000Bennet
Servicios de La Raza to expand mental and behavioral health care services for incarcerated and at-risk individualsDenver160,000Bennet
CareerWise Colorado for career and technical education, including youth apprenticeships and employer engagementDenver776,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
City of Denver Youth Crisis Response Team InitiativeDenver384,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Denver Community Foot Patrol Crime Prevention InitiativeDenver122,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Affordable Apartment ConstructionDenver1,450,000DeGette
Center for African American Health for facilities and equipmentDenver1,000,000DeGette
Urban Peak Shelter Reconstruction ProjectDenver3,000,000DeGette and Hickenlooper
Affordable Housing Creation at Stay Inn SiteDenver2,000,000DeGette and Hickenlooper
Colorado Coalition for the Homeless for facilities and equipmentDenver2,000,000DeGette and Hickenlooper
Mile High United Way for behavioral health services for young adults experiencing homelessnessDenver100,000DeGette and Hickenlooper
La Clinica Tepeyac for facilities and equipmentDenver2,000,000DeGette, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Denver Health and Hospital Authority for facilities and equipmentDenver1,200,000DeGette, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Jewish Family Service of Colorado for workforce development activities, including technology and equipmentDenver500,000DeGette, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Montbello FreshLo community hubDenver1,455,000Hickenlooper
National Institute for Medical Assistant Advancement for a training program, including technology and equipmentDenver450,000Perlmutter, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Savio House for facilities and equipmentDenver300,000Perlmutter
Community Awareness Program Improvement - Byrne Counterterrorism Education Learning Lab (CELL)Denver987,000Hickenlooper
Denver Police Department Outreach Case CoordinatorDenver244,000Hickenlooper
Generational Opportunities to Achieve Long-Term Success (GOALS) ProgramDouglas County1,000,000Crow, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Big Canyon Water LineDove Creek1,760,000Bennet
Durango Bus Acquisition, Charging Infrastructure and Technical ServicesDurango and Archuleta County522,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Durango Affordable Housing DevelopmentDurango3,000,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Fort Lewis College Regional Agriculture and Food SecurityDurango159,999Hickenlooper
Eagle County Bus Facilities and Charging InfrastructureEagle County1,201,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Mountain Family Health Centers for facilities and equipmentEdwards1,500,000Hickenlooper
Schriever AFB Fitness CenterEl Paso County30,000,000Bennet
Colorado State University - Soil Carbon Sequestration ResearchFort Collins$1,000,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Colorado State University for a college access and success initiativeFort Collins1,000,000Neguse
Regional Rural 911 Telecommunications and Data Program ExpansionFremont and Custer counties1,601,000Bennet
Gilpin County Office of Emergency ManagementGilpin County138,557Neguse
Roaring Fork Valley Permanent Supportive Housing ProjectGlenwood Springs750,000Bennet
Glenwood Springs South Bridge ProjectGlenwood Springs1,000,000Hickenlooper
Valley Settlement acquisition and retrofit of buses for the El Busesito Preschool ProgramGlenwood Springs285,000Hickenlooper
SH 93 Widening and Relocation DesignGolden2,320,000Perlmutter
Design, engineering, and construction for early childhood education center at Colorado West Healthcare SystemGrand Junction2,000,000Bennet
Fund Grand Junction Affordable Housing DevelopmentGrand Junction1,400,000Hickenlooper
Gunnison Valley Bus AcquisitionGunnison County1,460,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Hayden Entrepreneurial CenterHayden2,867,000Bennet
Water Treatment Plant UpgradeHotchkiss91,000Hickenlooper
Fuels Reduction ProjectJefferson County358,000Neguse
Southwest Colorado Regional Response, Investigative, Search, Rescue, and Recovery Capabilities Enhancement - La Plata County Sherrif's OfficeLa Plata County166,000Bennet
Region 9 Economic Development District to improve substance use disorder treatmentLa Plata County150,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Water Treatment PlantLa Veta600,000Hickenlooper
YMCA of Northern Colorado Childcare Programming and Site ConsolidationLafayette1,000,000Hickenlooper
Mental Health Partners to provide community mental health and well-being services to mitigate the long term impacts of traumaLafayette275,000Neguse
Lake County Community Justice NavigatorLake County$495,000Bennet
Community Justice CenterLake County3,575,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Easterseals Colorado Center for Inclusive Employment and ProgramsLakewood980,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Red Rocks Community College for a credential attainment initiative related to STEMLakewood300,000Perlmutter
Perry Stokes Airport (TAD) Pavement UpgradesLas Animas County450,000Hickenlooper
Boys & Girls Clubs of Larimer County collaborative childcare campus and community hubLoveland1,500,000Bennet
City of Loveland Pulliam Community Building RenovationsLoveland1,000,000Neguse
Grand Valley Bus AcquisitionMesa County1,223,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Water Tank Replacement projectMinturn1,000,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Rural Development Community Facilities Moffat County CourthouseMoffat County4,650,000Bennet
Rural Development Community Facilities Montrose County Courthouse RenovationMontrose County7,725,000Hickenlooper
Big Springs Emergency EgressNederland525,000Neguse
Western Slope Community Clinic & Urgent CarePalisade$1,000,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Coal Mine Methane SolutionsPitkin County1,200,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Parkview Medical Center for facilities and equipmentPueblo500,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Cogency Power Solar ProjectRangely5,000,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Central Sewer System ProjectRico2,500,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Valley-Wide Health Systems, Inc. for facilities and equipmentRocky Ford250,000Bennet
Enhanced Outcrop Methane CaptureSouthern Ute Indian Tribe2,500,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Boys & Girls Clubs in Colorado, Inc. to provide mental health services to promote social/emotional well-being among youth, including those exposed the traumaStatewide2,000,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Sterling Permanent Supportive HousingSterling550,000Bennet
Summit County Sheriff’s Office to support a mental health response teamSummit County 423,000Bennet
Search and Rescue Training and Vehicle Storage FacilitySummit County500,000Neguse, Bennet and Hickenlooper
Body-Worn Cameras for the Thornton Police DepartmentThornton310,000Perlmutter
Thornton De-Escalation Training SimulatorThornton125,000Hickenlooper
Rural Development Community Facilities Kwiyagat Community Academy K-5 Education BuildingUte Mountain Ute Tribe2,000,000Bennet
Ute Mountain Ute Housing Improvement ProjectUte Mountain Ute Tribe2,000,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
White Mesa Law Enforcement Service ExpansionUte Mountain Ute Tribe784,000Hickenlooper
Vail Bus Acquisition and Charging InfrastructureVail1,650,000Bennet and Hickenlooper
Water System Old Valve ReplacementWalden90,000Bennet
Wellington Fire Protection District for mental health trainingWellington18,000Hickenlooper
National Lao-Hmong MemorialWestminster250,000Perlmutter

Editor's Note: This story was updated to include additional community projects.