January 21, 2008 6:50 AM
Lights! Camera! Legislate!
By Alan Gathright
You wanted more transparency and openness in state government -- you got it!
Or maybe you're just tired of "Cheers" re-runs.
Today the Colorado legislature makes history with live "gavel-to-gavel" coverage of floor action starting at 1 p.m. on Comcast Digital Cable Channel 165.
Coloradans will also be able to access live video feeds at www.coloradochannel.net, where archives of House floor "shows" also will be available for 18 months.
"We will catapult this Capitol into the 21st century," House Speaker Andrew Romanoff, D-Denver, said in a statement Sunday. "For the first time in the history of Colorado, our legislature will go live – on television and on the Internet."
"Our goal is to make Colorado’s government the most transparent, the most accountable, the most citizen-friendly in America," Romanoff said. "Too many citizens just don’t have the time to come to the Capitol in person, so we’re bringing it home. We’re bringing the statehouse to your house. "
And for you digital-cable surfing, political junkies who can't get enough of McDreamy House Speaker Romanoff or the chamber's Unpredictable Reality TV star, Rep. Douglas Bruce: Broadcasts are available via Comcast's On Demand service one week after they originally air.
Officially called "Colorado Open House," it's been compared to C-SPAN -- but with more sizzle, of course.
House lawmakers have been taking plenty of ribbing about telegenic primping from camera-shy Senate colleagues, who will continue just allowing audio broadcasts of proceedings on the General Assembly Web site -- www.leg.state.co.us
"Next year, we hope to add the Senate, and, eventually, committee hearings as well," Romanoff said.
House Majority Leader Alice Madden, D-Boulder, teased jittery lawmakers to be ready -- and looking marvelous! -- today.
"So you might think about your hair, your makeup and your close-up," Madden reminded colleagues Friday.
Have questions about House TV show?
Contact: Who do I contact to get the Colorado Channel on cable television? If you have internet access on your computer, you may go to http://www.comcast.com, or call 1-800-266-2278.