Turtle touted as Colorado state reptile | VailDaily.com

Turtle touted as Colorado state reptile

Steven K. Paulson
Associated Press
Vail, CO Colorado

DENVER, Colorado ” Bills that would eliminate the deadline for filing a sex-assault lawsuit, make a turtle the state reptile and allow Broncos season ticket holders to resell their seats are among hundreds of measures being proposed by lawmakers this year.

Lawmakers also are proposing a plan to ban pesky political telephone solicitations, unless you really want them.

The bills were introduced Wednesday as the 2008 Legislature got under way.

Sen. Lois Tochtrop, D-Thornton, is sponsoring a bill that would overturn ticket-seller rules that she said unfairly limit the rights of season ticket holders to sell their tickets to others.

She said the bill is aimed at Ticketmaster, which handles ticket sales for the Broncos.

Ticketmaster spokesman Joe Freeman said he hasn’t seen the bill and couldn’t comment on it. He said the company policy supports ticket resale if consumers and entertainment producers are protected and laws are respected.

Kirk Dyer, the Broncos’ executive director of ticket operations, said the team offers season ticket holders the option of reselling their seats through Ticketmaster’s team exchange program, but don’t require it. Those who use the service are required to sell tickets at face value.

He said if ticket holders want to sell their tickets to a neighbor, “we have no problem with that. There is no way for us to enforce it.”

Officials of the Colorado Rockies, Denver Nuggets and Colorado Avalanche did not immediately return calls seeking comment.

Tochtrop said the proposed law would apply only to season tickets and would have no effect on Denver’s ban on scalping.

Rep. Gwyn Green, D-Golden, will offer a bill to remove the statute of limitations on filing civil suits over alleged sexual assaults.

Lawmakers killed a similar proposal two years ago that would have suspended the legal deadline for filing lawsuits in child sexual abuse allegations, opening a one-year window for claims dating as far back as 1971. It also would have given people until their 53rd birthday to file sex-abuse lawsuits in future allegations. Current law sets the deadline at age 24.

“It will help people learn who these predators are so parents can protect their children. It also would allow victims to get justice,” Green said.

Sen. Bob Hagedorn, D-Aurora, is offering a bill that would require tobacco companies to sell cigarettes that automatically extinguish themselves after two nursing home residents in Colorado died last year from smoke inhalation in fires caused by burning cigarettes. Hagedorn said about 20 other states have similar laws.

David Sutton, spokesman for Philip Morris USA, said he would prefer a uniform federal law on “fire-safe” cigarettes but doesn’t oppose new state initiatives if they’re in line with laws already in effect in other states.

A bill sponsored by Rep. Cherylin Peniston, D-Westminster, and Sen. Jennifer Veiga, D-Denver, would make the western painted turtle the state reptile.

Peniston said the bill was suggested by school children in Adams County after they discovered the state didn’t have a state reptile.

“Originally they thought they’d have a rattlesnake, but they were worried that people might think they were being too mean,”

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