DENVER (AP) — Colorado paid more than $630,000 last year to a group of personal and business associates of Gov. Jared Polis that had volunteered to help the state manage its way through the COVID-19 pandemic by tracking people’s movements, according to records obtained by The Denver Gazette.
When that group’s work was done, the state began paying another $1 million to a startup company created by two people tied to the first group’s work.
Neither of the contracts was publicly bid, but rather were the result of an executive order Polis issued in April 2020 declaring a disaster emergency that suspended state laws requiring bids on purchases relating to the pandemic.
State health officials defended the deals as valuable to their work battling the outbreak.