SB 176 was heavily amended on Thursday in order to get it out of the Senate Education Committee. The bill went from being a "shall" bill to a "may" bill. Essentially, other than making a statement in statute, the bill would have little, if any, effect for charter schools seeking assistance with their capital construction costs. Charter schools spend anywhere from 10 to 30% of their per pupil operating revenue for capital construction. School districts have access to taxpayer-generated bond revenue that charter schools do not.
Sen. Peter Groff noted during the hearing on the bill that charter school students comprise more than 7% of the state's public school population and yet receive less than 2% of bond revenues. Further data supporting inequity in charter school capital funding is in the Colorado League of Charter Schools' "Shortchanged Charters: How Funding Disparities Hurt Colorado Charter Schools."
The bill now goes to the floor of the Senate for second reading.