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1-40-106.5. Single-subject requirements for initiated measures and referred constitutional amendments – legislative declaration

Statute

(1) The general assembly hereby finds, determines, and declares that:

(a) Section 1 (5.5) of article V and section 2 (3) of article XIX of the state constitution require that every constitutional amendment or law proposed by initiative and every constitutional amendment proposed by the general assembly be limited to a single subject, which shall be clearly expressed in its title;

(b) Such provisions were referred by the general assembly to the people for their approval at the 1994 general election pursuant to Senate Concurrent Resolution 93-4;

(c) The language of such provisions was drawn from section 21 of article V of the state constitution, which requires that every bill, except general appropriation bills, shall be limited to a single subject, which shall be clearly expressed in its title;

(d) The Colorado supreme court has held that the constitutional single-subject requirement for bills was designed to prevent or inhibit various inappropriate or misleading practices that might otherwise occur, and the intent of the general assembly in referring to the people section 1 (5.5) of article V and section 2 (3) of article XIX was to protect initiated measures and referred constitutional amendments from similar practices;

(e) The practices intended by the general assembly to be inhibited by section 1 (5.5) of article V and section 2 (3) of article XIX are as follows:

(I) To forbid the treatment of incongruous subjects in the same measure, especially the practice of putting together in one measure subjects having no necessary or proper connection, for the purpose of enlisting in support of the measure the advocates of each measure, and thus securing the enactment of measures that could not be carried upon their merits;

(II) To prevent surreptitious measures and apprise the people of the subject of each measure by the title, that is, to prevent surprise and fraud from being practiced upon voters.

(2) It is the intent of the general assembly that section 1 (5.5) of article V and section 2 (3) of article XIX be liberally construed, so as to avert the practices against which they are aimed and, at the same time, to preserve and protect the right of initiative and referendum.

(3) It is further the intent of the general assembly that, in setting titles pursuant to section 1 (5.5) of article V, the initiative title setting review board created in section 1-40-106 should apply judicial decisions construing the constitutional single-subject requirement for bills and should follow the same rules employed by the general assembly in considering titles for bills.

 

 

Source: L. 94: Entire section added, p. 73, § 1, effective January 19, 1995.

Editor’s note: Section 2 of chapter 22, Session Laws of Colorado 1994, provided that the act enacting this section was effective on the date of the proclamation of the Governor announcing the approval, by the registered electors of the state, of SCR 93-004, enacted at the First Regular Session of the Fifty-ninth General Assembly. The date of the proclamation of the Governor announcing the approval of SCR 93-004 was January 19, 1995. (See L. 95, p. 1427.)
 
ANNOTATION

Law reviews. For article, “The Single-Subject Requirement For Initiatives”, see 29 Colo. Law. 65 (May 2000).

In determining whether a proposed measure contains more than one subject, the court may not interpret the language of the measure or predict its application if it is adopted. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 255, 4 P.3d 485 (Colo. 2000).

In order to violate the single subject requirement, the text of the measure must relate to more than one subject and have at least two distinct and separate purposes which are not dependent upon or connected with each other. The single subject requirement is not violated if the matters included are necessarily or properly connected to each other. In re Proposed Ballot Initiative on Parental Rights, 913 P.2d 1127 (Colo. 1996).

In order to pass constitutional muster, a proposed initiative must concern only one subject. In other words, it must effectuate or carry out only one general object or purpose. In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 73, 135 P.3d 736 (Colo. 2006); In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 74, 136 P.3d 237 (Colo. 2006).

The intent of the requirement that an initiative be limited to a single subject is to ensure that each proposal depends on its own merits for passage. Matter of Proposed Initiative 1996-17, 920 P.2d 798 (Colo. 1996); Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 105, 961 P.2d 1092 (Colo. 1998).

Subsection (1)(a)(I) prohibits the joinder of incongruous subjects in the same petition. Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 105, 961 P.2d 1092 (Colo. 1998).

The intent of the single-subject requirement is to prevent voters from being confused or misled and to ensure that each proposal is considered on its own merits. Matter of Ballot Title 1997-98 No. 74, 962 P.2d 927 (Colo. 1998).

The single-subject requirement must be liberally construed so as not to impose undue restrictions on the initiative process. Matter of Ballot Title 1997-98 No. 74, 962 P.2d 927 (Colo. 1998).

The single-subject requirement is not violated simply because an initiative with a single, distinct purpose spells out details relating to its implementation. As long as the procedures specified have a necessary and proper relationship to the substance of the initiative, they are not a separate subject. Matter of Ballot Title 1997-98 No. 74, 962 P.2d 927 (Colo. 1998); In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 255, 4 P.3d 485 (Colo. 2000).

A proposed measure that tends to effect or to carry out one general purpose presents only one subject. Consequently, minor provisions necessary to effectuate the purpose of the measure are properly included within its text. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 256, 12 P.3d 246 (Colo. 2000).

Just because a proposal may have different effects or that it makes policy choices that are not invariably interconnected does not mean that it necessarily violates the single-subject requirement. It is enough that the provisions of a proposal are connected. Here, the initiative addresses numerous issues in a detailed manner. However, all of these issues relate to the management of development. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 256, 12 P.3d 246 (Colo. 2000).

To evaluate whether or not an initiative effectuates or carries out only one general object or purpose, supreme court looks to the text of the proposed initiative. The single-subject requirement is not violated if the “matters encompassed are necessarily or properly connected to each other rather than disconnected or incongruous”. Stated another way, the single-subject requirement is not violated unless the text of the measure “relates to more than one subject and has at least two distinct and separate purposes that are not dependent upon or connected with each other”. Mere implementation or enforcement details directly tied to the initiative’s single subject will not, in and of themselves, constitute a separate subject. Finally, in order to pass the single-subject test, subject of the initiative should also be capable of being expressed in the initiative’s title. In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 73, 135 P.3d 736 (Colo. 2006); In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 74, 136 P.3d 237 (Colo. 2006).

Subjecting proposed initiative to a limitation imposed by the U.S. constitution, as interpreted by the U.S. supreme court, does not violate single-subject requirement. All state statutory and constitutional measures are subject to implicit limitation that the U.S. constitution, as interpreted by the U.S. supreme court, may require otherwise; a finding that such limitation violates the single-subject requirement would result in no measure satisfying the single-subject requirement. In re Ballot Title 2007-2008 No. 61, 184 P.3d 747 (Colo. 2008).

Likewise, provision allowing state to act in accordance with the U.S. constitution, as interpreted by U.S. supreme court, does not violate single-subject requirement. In re Ballot Title 2007-2008 No. 61, 184 P.3d 747 (Colo. 2008).

Measure is not deceptive or surreptitious merely because its content depends on the U.S. constitution, as interpreted by the U.S. supreme court. In re Ballot Title 2007-2008 No. 61, 184 P.3d 747 (Colo. 2008).

The fact that provisions of measure may affect more than one statutory provision does not itself mean that measure contains multiple subjects. Where initiative requiring background checks at gun shows also authorizes licensed gun dealers who conduct such background checks to charge a fee, the initiative contains a single subject. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 255, 4 P.3d 485 (Colo. 2000).

Single-subject requirement eliminates the practice of combining several unrelated subjects in a single measure for the purpose of enlisting support from advocates of each subject and thus securing the enactment of measures that might not otherwise be approved by voters on the basis of the merits of those discrete measures. In re Petitions, 907 P.2d 586 (Colo. 1995); In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996).

A proposed measure impermissibly includes more than one subject if its text relates to more than one subject and if the measure has at least two distinct and separate purposes that are not dependent upon or connected with each other. In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996); In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 235(a), 3 P.3d 1219 (Colo. 2000).

Grouping the provisions of a proposed initiative under a broad concept that potentially misleads voters will not satisfy the single-subject requirement. In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996); In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 Nos. 245(b), 245(c), 245(d), and 245(e), 1 P.3d 720 (Colo. 2000); In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 Nos. 245(f) and 245(g), 1 P.3d 739 (Colo. 2000).

Neither this section nor § 1(5.5) of article V of the state constitution creates any exemptions for initiatives that attempt to repeal constitutional provisions. Also, no special permission exists for initiatives that seek to address constitutional provisions adopted prior to the enactment of the single-subject requirement. In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996).

The term “measure” includes initiatives that either enact or repeal. In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996).

In cases of repeal, the underlying constitutional provision to be repealed must be examined in order to determine whether the repealing and reenacting initiative contains a single subject. If a provision contains multiple subjects and an initiative proposes to repeal the entire underlying provision, then the initiative contains multiple subjects. On the other hand, if an initiative proposes anything less than a total repeal, it may satisfy the single-subject requirement. In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996).

The single-subject requirement does not apply to municipal initiatives. Bruce v. City of Colo. Springs, 200 P.3d 1140 (Colo. App. 2008).

Title-setting board has no duty to advise proponents concerning possible solutions to a single-subject violation. Comment by the board is within its sound discretion; requiring comment would unconstitutionally expand the board’s authority and shift initiative-drafting responsibility from proponents to the board. In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996).

If the title-setting board rejects an initiative for violating the single-subject requirement, then proponents may pursue one of two courses of action. They may either (1) commence a new review and comment process, or (2) present a revised title to the board. In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4, 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996).

Single-subject requirement for ballot initiatives met where provisions in initiative make reference to the initiative’s subject and the provisions are sufficiently connected to the subject. Matter of Title, Ballot Title, 917 P.2d 292 (Colo. 1996).

An election provision in a measure does not constitute a separate subject if there is a sufficient connection between the provision and the subject of the initiative. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 235(a), 3 P.3d 1219 (Colo. 2000).

Title board is vested with considerable discretion in setting the title, ballot title and submission clause, and summary. In reviewing actions of the title board, court must liberally construe the single-subject and title requirements for initiatives. Matter of Title, Ballot Title, 917 P.2d 292 (Colo. 1996); Matter of Title, Ballot Title, Submission Clause, 917 P.2d 1277 (Colo. 1996).

Proposed initiative contains only one subject. Although initiative is comprehensive, all of its numerous provisions relate to the single subject of reforming petition rights and procedures. Matter of Petition for Amend. to Const., 907 P.2d 586 (Colo. 1995).

Proposed initiative that applies a $60 tax credit contains only one subject, even though it applies the credit to more than one tax and requires the state to replace monthly local government revenues lost because of the tax credit. Matter of Proposed Petition for an Amendment to the Constitution Adding Paragraph (d) Section (8) of Section 20 of Article X (Amend TABOR No. 32), 908 P.2d 125 (Colo. 1995).

The texts of the initiatives encompass the single subject of gaming activities conducted by nonprofit organizations. The initiatives detail what games of chance may be conducted, who may conduct such games, and how such games may be conducted. In re Proposed Init. Bingo-Raffle Lic. (I), 915 P.2d 1320 (Colo. 1996).

Proposed initiative did not violate the single-subject requirement where “the public’s interest in state waters” was sufficiently narrow and connected with both a “public trust doctrine” and the assignment of water use rights to the public or a watercourse. Matter of Title, Ballot Title, Submission Clause, 917 P.2d 1277 (Colo. 1996).

Proposed initiative did not contain more than one subject merely because it provided for alternative ways to accomplish the same result. The alternate ways were related to and connected with each other and plainly did not violate the single-subject requirement. Matter of Proposed Initiative 1996-17, 920 P.2d 798 (Colo. 1996).

Initiative that assessed fees for water pumped from beneath trust lands and then allocated the pumping fees for school finance was not considered two subjects by the court because the theme of the purpose of state trust lands and the educational recipient provide a unifying thread. Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 105, 961 P.2d 1092 (Colo. 1998).

Proposed initiative concerning uniform application of laws to livestock operations was upheld without opinion against challenges on basis of single-subject requirement and on other grounds. Matter of Proposed Initiative 1997-98 No. 112, 962 P.2d 255 (Colo. 1998).

Measure to recognize marriage between a man and a woman as valid does not contravene the single subject requirement of this section. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 Nos. 227 and 228, 3 P.3d 1 (Colo. 2000).

Proposed initiative that employs a growth formula limiting the rate of future development, delineates a system of measurement to determine the “base developed” area of each jurisdiction, allows for alternative treatment of commenced but not completed projects, excludes low-income housing, public parks and open space, and historic landmarks, and establishes a procedure for exemptions does not violate the constitutional prohibition against single subjects. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 235(a), 3 P.3d 1219 (Colo. 2000).

Proposed initiative that prohibits school districts from requiring schools to provide bilingual education programs while allowing parents to transfer children from an English immersion program to a bilingual program does not contain more than one subject. In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 258(A), 4 P.3d 1094 (Colo. 2000).

Enforcement provision under which election will be declared void and revenues collected pursuant to election will be refunded is directly tied to initiative’s purpose of eliminating pay-to-play contributions and, therefore, is not a separate subject. Clause in question should be interpreted as nothing more than an enforcement or implementation clause that does nothing more than incorporate inherent right of taxpayers to challenge tax, spending, or bond measures when they have standing to do so. Thus, enforcement provision is not a separate subject but rather is tied directly to initiative’s single subject. In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 73, 135 P.3d 736 (Colo. 2006).

Proposed initiative that modifies only the existing rights and interests in water between private individuals and the public is a cohesive proposal to create a new water regime and contains a single subject of public control of waters. Its provisions are necessarily and properly connected to each other because they define the purpose of the initiative, describe the broadened scope of the public’s control over the state’s water resources, and outline how to implement and enforce a new dominant public water estate. In re Ballot Title 2011-2012 No. 45, 2012 CO 26, 274 P.3d 576.

Proposed initiative that requires a statewide setback for new oil and gas development in this state and establishes that the statewide setback requirement is not a taking of private property under the state constitution contains a single subject. The “not a taking” provision applies only to the statewide setback requirement that would be established and is, therefore, properly connected to the requirement. In re Ballot Title 2013-2014 Nos. 85, 86, 87, 2014 CO 62, 328 P.3d 136.

Proposed initiative that defines “fee” for purposes of all Colorado constitutional provisions, laws, administrative rules, directives, and public legal documents as “a voluntarily incurred government charge in exchange for a specific benefit conferred on the taxpayer, which fee should reasonably approximate the payer’s fair share of the costs incurred by the government in providing said specific benefit”, contains a single subject. In re Ballot Title 2013-2014 No. 129, 2014 CO 53, 333 P.3d 101.

Proposed initiative contains more than one subject. Citizen initiative that retroactively creates substantive fundamental rights in charter and constitutional amendments approved after 1990, requires the word “shall” in such amendments be mandatory regardless of the context, establishes standards for judicial review of filed petitions, provides that challenges to petitions can be upheld only if beyond a reasonable doubt by a unanimous supreme court, and contains other substantive and procedural provisions relating to recall, referendum, and initiative petitions contains more than one subject. Amendment to Const. Section 2 to Art. VII, 900 P.2d 104 (Colo. 1995).

Proposed initiative that establishes a tax credit and sets forth procedural requirements for future ballot titles contains more than one subject. Matter of Title, Ballot Title Sub. Cl., 900 P.2d 121 (Colo. 1995).

Initiative that contains both tax cuts and mandatory reductions in state spending on state programs violates the single subject requirement. Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 88, 961 P.2d 1106 (Colo. 1998).

Proposed initiative that repealed the constitutional requirement that each judicial district have a minimum of one district court judge; deprived the city and county of Denver of control over Denver county court judgeships; immunized from liability persons who criticize a judicial officer regarding his or her qualifications; and altered the composition and powers of the commission on judicial discipline contains more than one subject. Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 64, 960 P.2d 1192 (Colo. 1998); Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 95, 960 P.2d 1204 (Colo. 1998).

Proposed initiative that also proposed to make all municipal court judges subject to its term of office and retention provisions and expanded the jurisdiction of the commission on judicial discipline to include municipal court judges contains more than one subject. Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 95, 960 P.2d 1204 (Colo. 1998).

Proposed initiative that creates a tax cut, imposes new criteria for voter approval of tax, spending, and debt increases, and imposes likely reductions in state spending on state programs contains at least three subjects. Matter of Title, Ballot Title and Sub. Cl., and Summary for 1999-2000 No. 37, 977 P.2d 845 (Colo. 1999).

Proposed initiative that creates a tax cut and imposes new criteria for voter approval of tax, spending, and debt increases contains multiple subjects. Matter of Title, Ballot Title and Sub. Cl., and Summary for 1999-2000 No. 38, 977 P.2d 849 (Colo. 1999).

Proposed initiative has more than single subject and, therefore, is unconstitutional. Initiative presents multiple subjects: (1) Time limits for tax measures; (2) time limits for public debt authorizations; and (3) time limits for voter-authorized relief from spending limits. While voters may well be receptive to a broadly applicable 10-year limitation upon the duration of any tax increases, they may not realize that they will be simultaneously limiting their ability to incur multiple-fiscal year district debt obligation to fund public projects. Voters would also be limiting prospectively the duration of all future ballot issues designed to provide relief from TABOR’s wholly independent spending caps. Voters are entitled to have each of these separate subjects considered upon its own merits. In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 74, 136 P.3d 237 (Colo. 2006).

Initiative that proposed the creation of a new Colorado department of environmental conservation and the creation of a mandatory public trust standard that would have required the department to resolve conflicts between economic interest and public ownership and public conservation values in lands, waters, public resources, and wildlife in favor of public ownerships and public values contained multiple subjects. In re Ballot Title 2007-2008 No. 17, 172 P.3d 871 (Colo. 2007).

Initiative that comprehensively revamps constitutional recall provisions and allows recall of non-elected state and local officers contains more than one subject. In re Ballot Title 2013-2014 No. 76, 2014 CO 52, 333 P.3d 76.

Proposed initiative that creates a new legal regime, the Colorado public trust doctrine, to govern the public’s rights in waters of natural streams contains a single subject. The proposed initiative does not contain an array of disconnected subjects joined together to garner support from various factions and does not contain surreptitious provisions that will surprise voters. In re Ballot Title 2011-2012 No. 3, 2012 CO 25, 274 P.3d 562.

Definition [Contribution]

(a) (I) The payment, loan, pledge, gift, or advance of money, or guarantee of a loan, made to any candidate committee, issue committee, political committee, small donor committee, or political party;

(II) Any payment made to a third party for the benefit of any candidate committee, issue committee, political committee, small donor committee, or political party;

(III) The fair market value of any gift or loan of property made to any candidate committee, issue committee, political committee, small donor committee or political party;

(IV) Anything of value given, directly or indirectly, to a candidate for the purpose of promoting the candidate’s nomination, retention, recall, or election.

(b) “Contribution” does not include services provided without compensation by individuals volunteering their time on behalf of a candidate, candidate committee, political committee, small donor committee, issue committee, or political party; a transfer by a membership organization of a portion of a member’s dues to a small donor committee or political committee sponsored by such membership organization; or payments by a corporation or labor organization for the costs of establishing, administering, and soliciting funds from its own employees or members for a political committee or small donor committee.

Section 2(5) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

 

C.R.S. § 1-45-103 further adds:

(b) “Contribution” includes, with regard to a contribution for which the contributor receives compensation or consideration of less than equivalent value to such contribution, including, but not limited to, items of perishable or nonpermanent value, goods, supplies, services, or participation in a campaign-related event, an amount equal to the value in excess of such compensation or consideration as determined by the candidate committee.

(c) “Contribution” also includes:

(I) Any payment, loan, pledge, gift, advance of money, or guarantee of a loan made to any political organization;

(II) Any payment made to a third party on behalf of and with the knowledge of the political organization; or

(III) The fair market value of any gift or loan of property made to any political organization.

C.R.S. § 1-45-103.

Definition [State]

A state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Ballot]

(a) A federal write-in absentee ballot;

(b) A ballot specifically prepared or distributed for use by a covered voter in accordance with this article; or

(c) A ballot cast by a covered voter in accordance with this article.

(2) “Covered voter” means:

(a) A uniformed-service voter defined in paragraph (a) of subsection (9) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from this state by reason of active duty and who otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(b) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, was last eligible to vote in this state and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements;

(c) An overseas voter who, before leaving the United States, would have been last eligible to vote in this state had the voter then been of voting age and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements; or

(d) An overseas voter who was born outside the United States, is not described in paragraph (b) or (c) of this subsection (2), and, except for a state residency requirement, otherwise satisfies this state’s voter eligibility requirements if the last place where a parent, legal guardian, spouse, or civil union partner of the voter was, or under this article would have been, eligible to vote before leaving the United States is within this state.

C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Definition [Person]

Any natural person, partnership, committee, association, corporation, labor organization, political party, or other organization or group of persons. Section 2(11) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

Definition [Election]

Any election under the “Uniform Election Code of 1992” or the “Colorado Municipal Election Code of 1965”, article 10 of title 31, C.R.S. C.R.S. § 1-7.5-103.

Definition [Spending]

Funds expended influencing or attempting to influence the selection, nomination, election, or appointment of any individual to any state or local public office in the state and includes, without limitation, any purchase, payment, distribution, loan, advance, deposit, or gift of money or anything of value by any political organization, a contract, promise, or agreement to expend funds made or entered into by any political organization, or any electioneering communication by any political organization. C.R.S. § 1-45-103.

Definition [Dependent]

A spouse, civil union partner, or dependent of a covered voter described in subsection (2) of this section who is a resident of this state but who is absent from the state by reason of the active duty or service of the covered voter. C.R.S. § 1-8.3-102.

Cases

Colorado Cases

Out-of-State Cases

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 255

Citation: 4 P.3d 485 (Colo. 2000)

Year: 2000

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/67edcad53f3fcce43fbc32bdf1e32b25

Case Summary: Holding that former statutory deadline for filing fiscal impact statement was not jurisdictional; late submission of fiscal impact statement substantially complied with that statutory deadline; objectors' filing of petitions for review did not preclude the board from correcting clerical errors in the summary; titles and summary did not violate single-subject requirement; titles and summary were not misleading; and fiscal impact statement was adequate.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Proposed Ballot Initiative on Parental Rights

Citation: 913 P.2d 1127 (Colo. 1996)

Year: 1996

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/9e698036a78b0d568c8ce6eb7447dfee

Case Summary: Holding that initiative embraced only a single subject; title, ballot title, submission clause, and summary were adequate; and therefore, fiscal impact statement was adequate.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 73

Citation: 135 P.3d 736 (Colo. 2006)

Year: 2006

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/3857c0beaead04995fbc8be6ac2acbaa

Case Summary: Holding that enforcement provision was not a separate subject in violation of the single subject rule; titles were fair, sufficient, and clear; and finally, titles did not misstate the scope of the initiative.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2005-2006 No. 74

Citation: 136 P.3d 237 (Colo. 2006)

Year: 2006

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/2acbf5d670c0ed9932818e0cf3a08036?query=136%20P[...]

Case Summary: Holding that the initiative setting time limits for measures that would raise taxes, authorize public indebtedness, and authorize voter relief from spending limits violated the single-subject requirement.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Proposed Initiative 1996-17

Citation: 920 P.2d 798 (Colo. 1996)

Year: 1996

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/35406e720c3f9963fa0710f1b2005f2a

Case Summary: Holding that initiative titles and summary were misleading in that they failed to disclose that initiative would affect only the six-county Denver metropolitan area and that  fiscal impact statement in summary was inaccurate.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 105

Citation: 961 P.2d 1092 (Colo. 1998)

Year: 1998

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/71c961029fc35b606615f2b161c4bd6d

Case Summary: Holding that initiative to require water conservation district to make payments for the benefit of state and local school districts based on use of basin water did not violate single-subject requirement; titles and summary for such initiative were not misleading or confusing; board did not abuse its discretion in changing statutory governance provisions of the water conservation district; titles and summary for initiative to add a statutory requirement that water conservation districts refund monies received from court judgments for attorney fees and court costs was not misleading; and “refund to taxpayers” was not a prohibited catch phrase.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Ballot Title 1997-98 No. 74

Citation: 962 P.2d 927 (Colo. 1998)

Year: 1998

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/0fa640bff35287ce44c9b70666e9cc06

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiative to impose “school impact fees” on newly constructed housing encompassed only one subject and that language used by the Title Board in setting the titles fairly and accurately conveyed the proposal's central ramifications.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 256

Citation: 12 P.3d 246 (Colo. 2000)

Year: 2000

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/2b12669d64aa50a40b5f4e0d4980d684?query=In%20re[...]

Case Summary: Holding that proponents' amendments to the original draft of the initiative petition were not required to be resubmitted to the directors of the legislative council; initiative to add “Citizen Management of Growth” provisions to the state Constitution did not violate the single-subject requirement; and titles and summary were not misleading.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2007-2008 No. 61

Citation: 184 P.3d 747 (Colo. 2008)

Year: 2008

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/8150474823b08873ec9f5213f0e24478

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiative seeking to prohibit discrimination and preferential treatment did not violate single subject requirement; the title of proposed initiative fairly and correctly expressed the meaning of the initiative; and the title did not conflict with other proposed initiative.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Petitions

Citation: 907 P.2d 586 (Colo. 1995)

Year: 1995

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/7b9e9873136047eee0a016f4e6ad7c33

Case Summary: Holding that initiative pertaining to initiative and referendum petition rights and procedures did not violate the single subject requirement of the State Constitution and that title, ballot title and submission clause, and summary correctly and fairly reflected the true intent and meaning of the proposal.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Proposed Initiative 1996-4

Citation: 916 P.2d 528 (Colo. 1996)

Year: 1996

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/927f87c1172a2b8df6e74f1c72ecd1f9?query=916%20P[...]

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiatives to repeal state constitutional provisions were not exempt from the single subject requirement; no special exemption from the single subject requirement exists for proposed initiatives that seek to address constitutional provisions adopted before the enactment of the requirement; and the initiative proposing to repeal parts of the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights amendment addressed topics related to spending and revenue limits, elections, local responsibility for state mandated programs, and emergency reserves and, thus, did not satisfy the single subject requirement, despite the fact that each subsection addressed “limiting government spending.”

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 235(a)

Citation: 3 P.3d 1219 (Colo. 2000)

Year: 2000

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/86f3129eea33291d1fc5a8c7e87425c1

Case Summary: Holding that initiative to add state a constitutional amendment for conservation of natural lands and open space did not violate the single-subject requirement and that the titles were clear regarding the meaning of “base developed area” and the identification of the annual nature of  growth limitations.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 Nos. 245(b), 245(c), 245(d), and 245(e)

Citation: 1 P.3d 720 (Colo. 2000)

Year: 2000

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/74bd0850c206e05e4adb37b0ceb338f7

Case Summary: Holding that initiatives did not violate the single-subject requirement by including provisions converting magistrate positions into constitutional judicial officers or by possibly requiring funding to support the creation of four-year-term magistrate positions.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Bruce v. City of Colo. Springs

Citation: 200 P.3d 1140 (Colo. App. 2008)

Year: 2008

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/31d8c1b6ba49a5488f1cf5496a92c452

Case Summary: Holding that the single subject rule for legislative measures applies only to statewide measures and not to municipal initiatives and that constitutional challenge to the single subject rule had to be decided before the trial court could determine whether initiative violated it.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Title, Ballot Title

Citation: 917 P.2d 292 (Colo. 1996)

Year: 1996

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/ddc236d6eeef3e120cbb8ba057412b1d?query=917%20P[...]

Case Summary: Holding that provisions of initiative preventing the state from increasing its regulatory role over education of children in nonpublic schools and encouraging General Assembly to repeal laws impeding the ability of public schools to provide quality of education equal to or greater than that in nonpublic schools were sufficiently connected with parental choice of quality educational programs to satisfy single-subject requirement.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Proposed Petition for an Amendment to the Constitution Adding Paragraph (d) Section (8) of Section 20 of Article X (Amend TABOR No. 32)

Citation: 908 P.2d 125 (Colo. 1995)

Year: 1995

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/753010866e7ea4a2b9833ab609c65f01

Case Summary: Holding that ballot initiative seeking to establish tax credits for six state or local taxes did not violate the single-subject requirement; the title and ballot title of ballot initiative submission clause did not confuse and mislead voters; and fiscal impact statement contained in constitutional ballot initiative summary accurately described fiscal impact of initiative.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Proposed Init. Bingo-Raffle Lic. (I)

Citation: 915 P.2d 1320 (Colo. 1996)

Year: 1996

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/b181b5f4a4680ea03b74ee866bdb0daa

Case Summary: Holding that title, ballot title, submission clause, and summary did not violate single-subject requirement and that they adequately described provisions and features of initiatives and adequately disclosed important features of initiative.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Title, Ballot Title, Submission Clause

Citation: 917 P.2d 1277 (Colo. 1996)

Year: 1996

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/4b01fd43fe548b8c36581aa76680eeb9

Case Summary: Holding that initiative seeking to add provisions to the Constitution mandating adoption and defense of the “public trust doctrine” regarding state waters and providing for granting of water use rights to the public and to any watercourse satisfied single-subject requirement; title was not misleading, confusing, subjective, or ambiguous, and did not constitute an impermissible “catch phrase”; and failure to disclose that “public trust doctrine” was undefined was not fatal to the titles.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Proposed Initiative 1997-98 No. 112

Citation: 962 P.2d 255 (Colo. 1998)

Year: 1998

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/3d2b06a6019205cd083241ef49fcb835

Case Summary: Affirming action of title setting board in fixing the title, ballot title, submission clause, and summary  for a proposed constitutional amendment to provide that state laws and regulations concerning all livestock operations be uniform and based upon the similarity in the potential impact on the environment of all such livestock operations.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 Nos. 227 and 228

Citation: 3 P.3d 1 (Colo. 2000)

Year: 2000

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/d082df80033670f6f7602960024ac97b?query=3%20P.3[...]

Case Summary: Holding that initiatives specifying that a marriage must be between a man and a woman to be recognized as valid did not contain more than one subject; titles and summaries were not misleading, unfair, and inaccurate; and titles and summaries did not contain an impermissible catch phrase.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 1999-2000 No. 258(A)

Citation: 4 P.3d 1094 (Colo. 2000)

Year: 2000

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/8edd8bc3b589048e733f7be65d8030ac

Case Summary: Holding that elimination of school boards' powers to require bilingual education was not a separate subject violating the single-subject requirement; titles and summary were materially defective in failing to summarize the provision that no school district or school could be required to offer a bilingual education program; and titles that characterized initiative as requiring that all children in Colorado public schools be taught English “as rapidly and effectively as possible” contained improper catch phrase.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2011-2012 No. 45

Citation: 274 P.3d 576 (Colo. 2012)

Year: 2012

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/298a7fefdc0df4e3da8b1c118173f233

Case Summary: Holding that proposed ballot initiative to expand the scope of public control over all of the state's water did not violate single-subject requirement and that titles were sufficiently clear to satisfy clear title requirement.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2013-2014 Nos. 85, 86, 87

Citation: 328 P.3d 136 (Colo. 2014)

Year: 2014

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/0273798f2fb7d90edfc6650c9e93f51d

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiatives, which established alternative setback distances and provided that setbacks were not considered takings under the state Constitution, satisfied the single-subject requirement; failure of titles for proposed initiatives to inform voters that initiatives did not bar takings claims under the federal Constitution did not render titles noncompliant with clear-title requirement; initiatives were not misleading in referring to the state's oil, gas, other gaseous and liquid hydrocarbons and carbon dioxide in defining the phrase “oil and gas development”; the term “statewide setback” as included in title, ballot title, and submission clauses was not an impermissible “catch phrase” and was not misleading; titles for the alternative initiatives did not conflict with one another; and titles for two alternative versions were not misleading by omitting hydraulic fracturing as one of the methods of oil and gas development to which setback requirements would apply.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Amendment to Const. Section 2 to Art. VII

Citation: 900 P.2d 104 (Colo. 1995)

Year: 1995

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/a85764476ef05b1b2359d19672debb3d

Case Summary: Holding that initiative dealing with petition procedures impermissibly encompassed more than one single subject and that the title selected by the board was not a clear, concise summary of the initiative.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Title, Ballot Title and Submission Clause, and Summary with Regard to a Proposed Petition for an Amendment to the Constitution of the State of Colorado Adding Subsection (10) to Section 20 of Article X (Amend Tabor 25)

Citation: 900 P.2d 121 (Colo. 1995)

Year: 1995

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/73b3c4bd43cf74057fbdb20ac0c18cc9

Case Summary: Holding that Secretary of State and Attorney General had authority to delegate their duty to serve on the Title Board to others, but that an initiative covering a tax credit and procedure for future ballot titles violated single subject requirement.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 88

Citation: 961 P.2d 1106 (Colo. 1998)

Year: 1998

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/6d198d9cf772a950142e7e6bc336347b

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiative violated the constitutional prohibition on initiatives with multiple subjects, because it contained both tax cuts and mandatory reductions in state spending on state programs.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 64

Citation: 960 P.2d 1192 (Colo. 1998)

Year: 1998

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/4b414ccaab7b7d6c3b98e92be4fc2fbe

Case Summary: Holding that initiative violated constitutional prohibition against initiatives with multiple subjects, because it contained provisions unrelated to establishing qualifications for judicial officers.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Title, Ballot Title for 1997-98 No. 95

Citation: 960 P.2d 1204 (Colo. 1998)

Year: 1998

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/bf8db20532e407fc9ff0db0d044e72d9

Case Summary: Holding that initiative violated single subject requirement for proposed initiatives, because it contained provisions which were unrelated to its stated purpose of establishing judicial qualifications.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: Matter of Title, Ballot Title and Sub. Cl., and Summary for 1999-2000 No. 37

Citation: 977 P.2d 845 (Colo. 1999)

Year: 1999

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/bd39187c4b14b91d5733176536f13105

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiative violated State Constitution's single-subject requirement and that titles and summary designated by the Board were unclear; initiative created a tax cut, imposed new criteria for voter approval of revenue and spending increases, and imposed likely reductions in state spending on state programs.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2007-2008 No. 17

Citation: 172 P.3d 871 (Colo. 2007)

Year: 2007

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/ed19f679792cf218b1a670c6e20e9261

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiative created a department of environmental conservation and mandated a public trust standard; therefore, it violated the constitutional single subject requirement for initiative measures.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2013-2014 No. 76

Citation: 333 P.3d 76 (Colo. 2014)

Year: 2014

Case URL: https://www.ravellaw.com/opinions/342356ba889c114ee25d1d14a20a9f3b

Case Summary: Holding that proposed initiative violated single-subject requirement, because it both preemptively changed the manner in which recall elections for state and local officers would be triggered and conducted and instituted a new constitutional right to recall non-elected officers.

Case State: colorado

Case Name: In re Ballot Title 2011-2012 No. 3

Citation: 274 P.3d 562 (Colo. 2012)

Year: 2012

Case URL: https://perma.cc/YRF2-A5JM

Case Summary: Holding that proposed public "rights in the waters of natural streams” ballot initiative did not violate single-subject requirement and that titles for initiative were sufficiently clear to satisfy constitutional clear title requirement.

Federal Cases

Regulations & Guidance