Colorado has taken an important step on the path toward environmental justice as the Mobile Home Park Water Quality bill passed earlier this year today became law. Sponsored by Reps. Elizabeth Velasco and Andrew Boesenecker and Sen. Lisa Cutter, HB23-1257 was signed Monday by Gov. Jared Polis in Denver.
For years, Voces Unidas has heard from residents of mobile home parks in the central-mountain region with concerns over the quality of their drinking water – the off-putting taste, smell and color, stained clothing, damaged appliances, even sick children and skin rashes. They were not alone. Our 2022 Colorado Latino Policy Agenda annual survey found that almost 40% of mobile home park residents statewide do not believe their water is safe for drinking. And for years, their complaints have largely gone unheard.
HB23-1257 begins to address the issue by establishing a water testing program for mobile home parks, developing standards for an action plan to address water quality issues, creating a fund for remediation, and outlining enforcement mechanisms under the existing Mobile Home Park Act Dispute Resolution and Enforcement Program.
None of this will happen overnight, and HB23-1257 is just one of a few bills that will be required to address water quality. But by establishing a process to ensure access to clean drinking water, it serves as an important first step on the path toward environmental justice for historically marginalized mobile home park residents in the central mountains and throughout Colorado.
As the lead organization providing lobbying support, Voces Unidas played a critical role in advocating for the bill's passage. HB23-1257 was one of our top-tier legislative priorities.
Voces Unidas looks forward to the implementation of the testing program and will continue working with Rep. Velasco and other lawmakers on future legislation to ensure that Colorado fulfills its obligation to improve water quality for mobile home park residents and all Coloradans.
Learn more at www.vocesunidasaction.org/policy.