As the last decade rounded the corner, I knew my life was going to forever change. I was about to meet one of the most important people in my entire life. After months of waiting, my wife and I welcomed our baby girl, Isadora Yael Fenberg, into the world at 1:40pm on December 30th.
As I embark on another legislative session, which begins today, it’s clear to me that my world has changed a bit. I’ve changed. Now I’m a father.
Now it’s personal.
I’m more motivated than ever to fight for Colorado’s–and Isa’s–future. And, although this might be the sleep deprivation talking, I’m increasingly optimistic (and impatient!) when it comes to creating that future.
For example, I want Isa and other kids in Colorado to be able to play outside all summer long, not just on days when there isn’t a high ozone alert. That’s why I’ll be introducing legislation and fighting to aggressively clean up Colorado’s air quality. This includes funding for increased inspections of emitters, better engagement with the scientific community in policymaking, deeper and more continuous air monitoring for methane and cancer-causing emissions, and cleaning up dirty diesel emissions that cause ozone.
It also means giving local communities more control over the chemicals that are released into our air, land, and water. Currently, it’s illegal for a local government to have any oversight over where and when dangerous chemicals from pesticides are used. This session, I hope to change that. We all breathe the same air, drink the same water, and recreate in the same streams, so we should be more responsible about how each of our actions impact the health and safety of the larger community.
And, of course, there is still much work to be done on the existential threat of climate change. There will be several pieces of legislation this year to continue to take action on climate, but one that I’m very excited about is a bill that will provide incentives for homeowners, builders, and commercial property owners to phase out their use of natural gas for home heating. The technology for heat pumps and on-demand water heaters are here and we need to rapidly deploy them to replace outdated technologies that rely on fossil fuels for our daily living.
Of course, these are just a few issues. Over the coming days and weeks, I’ll be sharing more about the Senate Dems’ bold agenda. There are so many important issues that I and the Democratic caucus will be working on over the next 120 days–bringing down the cost of health care, providing student debt relief, and addressing our growing mental health crisis, just to name a few.
Time to get to work. Who needs to sleep??