Colorado Legislation Session Begins in January

The 2023 Colorado Legislative Session will begin on Jan. 9, 2023, and the American Heart Association is excited about what we hope to accomplish.


Tobacco control issues will once again be front and center. This year, however, the focus will be on improving some existing legislation.

Colorado has existing legislation regarding buffer zones, or distance from tobacco vendors from schools and day cares, which is set at 500 feet. However, the state law allows localities to have less restrictive policies and smaller buffer zones. That’s not consistent with legislation regulating the alcohol and cannabis retailers.

Additionally, legislation will be introduced to make sure the Colorado Department of Revenue has authority to regulate online tobacco sales and that counties have the ability to issue tobacco retail licenses.

AHA will also make sure Healthy School Meals for All is implemented correctly with no changes to the funding source passed by Colorado residents this past November.

Government Relations Director Eric Heydorn will work on this legislation during the session. Eric joined the AHA back in April and was key in the AHA’s support of Proposition FF, Healthy School Meals for All, passing. Here’s a bit about Eric:

Eric comes to the American Heart Association with more than 15 years of experience in health care nonprofits, including the last four-plus years in government relations with the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network and the Alzheimer’s Association.  Driven by health equity, access to care and tobacco control, Eric is excited to advance his career at AHA. 

After growing up in Ohio and attending Bowling Green State University, Eric’s career took him to several East Coast cities, including Wilmington, NC; Baltimore, Raleigh, NC, and Washington DC before he moved west to Colorado in the Fall of 2017.  Since arriving in Denver, Eric has enjoyed exploring new hikes with his dog, Harvey, snowboarding, camping and finding breweries with a nice patio.  When he’s not outside, Eric might be binging podcasts, reading suspense novels or rewatching VEEP. 

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