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colorado > Colorado Electoral Code > Initiative And Referendum

1-40-124.5. Ballot information booklet

Statute

(1) (a) The director of research of the legislative council of the general assembly shall prepare a ballot information booklet for any initiated or referred constitutional amendment or legislation, including a question, as defined in section 1-41-102 (3), in accordance with section 1 (7.5) of article V of the state constitution.

(b) The director of research of the legislative council of the general assembly shall prepare a fiscal impact statement for every initiated or referred measure, taking into consideration fiscal impact information submitted by the office of state planning and budgeting, the department of local affairs or any other state agency, and any proponent or other interested person. The fiscal impact statement prepared for every measure shall be substantially similar in form and content to the fiscal notes provided by the legislative council of the general assembly for legislative measures pursuant to section 2-2-322, C.R.S. A complete copy of the fiscal impact statement for such measure shall be available through the legislative council of the general assembly. The ballot information booklet shall indicate whether there is a fiscal impact for each initiated or referred measure and shall abstract the fiscal impact statement for such measure. The abstract for every measure shall appear after the arguments for and against such measure in the analysis section of the ballot information booklet, and shall include, but shall not be limited to:

(I) An estimate of the effect the measure will have on state and local government revenues, expenditures, taxes, and fiscal liabilities if such measure is enacted;

(II) An estimate of the amount of any state and local government recurring expenditures or fiscal liabilities if such measure is enacted; and

(III) For any initiated or referred measure that modifies the state tax laws, an estimate of the impact to the average taxpayer, if feasible, if such measure is enacted.

(c) Repealed.

(d) The director of research of the legislative council of the general assembly may update the initial fiscal impact statement prepared in accordance with section 1-40-105.5 when preparing the fiscal impact statement required by this subsection (1).

Editor’s note: Paragraph (d) is effective March 26, 2016.

(1.5) The executive committee of the legislative council of the general assembly shall be responsible for providing the fiscal information on any ballot issue that must be included in the ballot information booklet pursuant to section 1 (7.5) (c) of article V of the state constitution.

(1.7) (a) After receiving written comments from the public in accordance with section 1 (7.5) (a) (II) of article V of the state constitution, but before the draft of the ballot information booklet is finalized, the director of research of the legislative council of the general assembly shall conduct a public meeting at which the director and other members of the legislative staff have the opportunity to ask questions that arise in response to the written comments. The director may modify the draft of the booklet in response to comments made at the hearing. The legislative council may modify the draft of the booklet upon the two-thirds affirmative vote of the members of the legislative council.

(b) (I) Each person submitting written comments in accordance with section 1 (7.5) (a) (II) of article V of the state constitution shall provide his or her name and the name of any organization the person represents or is affiliated with for purposes of making the comments.

(II) The arguments for and against each measure in the analysis section of the ballot information booklet shall be preceded by the phrase: “For information on those issue committees that support or oppose the measures on the ballot at the (date and year) election, go to the Colorado secretary of state’s elections center web site hyperlink for ballot and initiative information (appropriate secretary of state web site address).”.

(2) Following completion of the ballot information booklet, the director of research shall arrange for its distribution to every residence of one or more active registered electors in the state. Distribution may be accomplished by such means as the director of research deems appropriate to comply with section 1 (7.5) of article V of the state constitution, including, but not limited to, mailing the ballot information booklet to electors and insertion of the ballot information booklet in newspapers of general circulation in the state. The distribution shall be performed pursuant to a contract or contracts bid and entered into after employing standard competitive bidding practices including, but not limited to, the use of requests for information, requests for proposals, or any other standard vendor selection practices determined to be best suited to selecting an appropriate means of distribution and an appropriate contractor or contractors. The executive director of the department of personnel shall provide such technical advice and assistance regarding bidding procedures as deemed necessary by the director of research.

(3) (a) There is hereby established in the state treasury the ballot information publication and distribution revolving fund. Except as otherwise provided in paragraph (b) of this subsection (3), moneys shall be appropriated to the fund each year by the general assembly in the annual general appropriation act. All interest earned on the investment of moneys in the fund shall be credited to the fund. Moneys in the revolving fund are continuously appropriated to the legislative council of the general assembly to pay the costs of publishing the text and title of each constitutional amendment, each initiated or referred measure, or part of a measure, and the text of a referred or initiated question arising under section 20 of article X of the state constitution, as defined in section 1-41-102 (3), in at least one legal publication of general circulation in each county of the state, as required by section 1-40-124, and the costs of distributing the ballot information booklet, as required by subsection (2) of this section. Any moneys credited to the revolving fund and unexpended at the end of any given fiscal year shall remain in the fund and shall not revert to the general fund.

(b) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, any moneys appropriated from the general fund to the legislative department of the state government for the fiscal year commencing on July 1, 2007, that are unexpended or not encumbered as of the close of the fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund and shall be transferred by the state treasurer and the controller to the ballot information publication and distribution revolving fund created in paragraph (a) of this subsection (3); except that the amount so transferred shall not exceed five hundred thousand dollars.

(c) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, any moneys appropriated from the general fund to the legislative department of the state government for the fiscal year commencing on July 1, 2008, that are unexpended or not encumbered as of the close of the fiscal year shall not revert to the general fund and shall be transferred by the state treasurer and the controller to the ballot information publication and distribution revolving fund created in paragraph (a) of this subsection (3).

(d) Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, any moneys appropriated from the general fund to the legislative department of the state government for the fiscal year commencing on July 1, 2009, that are unexpended or not encumbered as of the close of the fiscal year and that are in excess of the amount of one million forty-two thousand dollars shall not revert to the general fund and shall be transferred by the state treasurer and the controller to the ballot information publication and distribution revolving fund created in paragraph (a) of this subsection (3); except that the amount so transferred shall not exceed one million one hundred twenty-nine thousand six hundred seven dollars.

(e) Notwithstanding any provision of this subsection (3) to the contrary, on August 11, 2010, the state treasurer shall deduct one million one hundred twenty-nine thousand six hundred seven dollars from the ballot information publication and distribution revolving fund and transfer such sum to the redistricting account within the legislative department cash fund.

 

 

Source: L. 94: Entire section added, p. 1688, § 2, effective January 19, 1995.L. 96: (2) amended, p. 1511, § 35, effective July 1.L. 97: (3) added, p. 384, § 1, effective April 19.L. 2000: (1) and (3) amended and (1.5) added, p. 298, § 4, effective August 2; (1) amended, p. 1623, § 8, effective August 2.L. 2001: (1) amended, p. 223, § 1, effective August 8.L. 2004: (3) amended, p. 410, § 3, effective April 8.L. 2005: (3)(a) amended, p. 759, § 6, effective June 1; (1)(c) repealed and (1.7) added, p. 1371, § § 2, 1, effective June 6.L. 2007: (3)(b) amended, p. 2124, § 2, effective April 11.L. 2008: (3)(b) amended, p. 2325, § 2, effective April 7.L. 2009: (3)(c) added, (SB 09-224), ch. 441, p. 2445, § 2, effective March 20.L. 2010: (3)(d) added, (HB 10-1367), ch. 430, p. 2240, § 2, effective April 15; (3)(e) added, (HB 10-1210), ch. 352, p. 1639, § 14, effective August 11; (1.7) amended, (HB 10-1370), ch. 270, p. 1240, § 3, effective January 1, 2011.L. 2015: (1)(d) added, (HB 15-1057), ch. 198, p. 679, § 6, effective March 26, 2016.

 

Editor’s note: (1) Section 5 of chapter 284, 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 Senate Concurrent Resolution 94-005, enacted at the Second Regular Session of the Fifty-ninth General Assembly. The date of the proclamation of the Governor announcing the approval of Senate Concurrent Resolution 94-005 was January 19, 1995.

(2) Amendments to subsection (1) by Senate Bill 00-172 and House Bill 00-1304 were harmonized.

(3) Section 9 of chapter 198 (HB 15-1057), Session Laws of Colorado 2015, provides that the act adding subsection (1)(d) applies to initiatives that are submitted for review and comment on or after March 26, 2016.

Cross references: For the legislative declaration in the 2010 act amending subsection (1.7), see section 1 of chapter 270, Session Laws of Colorado 2010.

Definition [Expenditure]

Any purchase, payment, distribution, loan, advance, deposit, or gift of money by any person for the purpose of expressly advocating the election or defeat of a candidate or supporting or opposing a ballot issue or ballot question. An expenditure is made when the actual spending occurs or when there is a contractual agreement requiring such spending and the amount is determined.

(b) “Expenditure” does not include:

(I) Any news articles, editorial endorsements, opinion or commentary writings, or letters to the editor printed in a newspaper, magazine or other periodical not owned or controlled by a candidate or political party;

(II) Any editorial endorsements or opinions aired by a broadcast facility not owned or controlled by a candidate or political party;

(III) Spending by persons, other than political parties, political committees and small donor committees, in the regular course and scope of their business or payments by a membership organization for any communication solely to members and their families;

(IV) Any 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 made by a corporation or labor organization for the costs of establishing, administering, or soliciting funds from its own employees or members for a political committee or small donor committee.

Section 2(8) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

Definition [Issue committee]

Any person, other than a natural person, or any group of two or more persons, including natural persons:

(I) That has a major purpose of supporting or opposing any ballot issue or ballot question; or

(II) That has accepted or made contributions or expenditures in excess of two hundred dollars to support or oppose any ballot issue or ballot question.

(b) “Issue committee” does not include political parties, political committees, small donor committees, or candidate committees as otherwise defined in this section.

(c) An issue committee shall be considered open and active until affirmatively closed by such committee or by action of the appropriate authority.

Section 2(10) of article XXVIII of the state constitution.

 

(b) For purposes of section 2 (10) (a) (I) of article XXVIII of the state constitution, “major purpose” means support of or opposition to a ballot issue or ballot question that is reflected by:

(I) An organization’s specifically identified objectives in its organizational documents at the time it is established or as such documents are later amended; or

(II) An organization’s demonstrated pattern of conduct based upon its:

(A) Annual expenditures in support of or opposition to a ballot issue or ballot question; or

(B) Production or funding, or both, of written or broadcast communications, or both, in support of or opposition to a ballot issue or ballot question.

(c) The provisions of paragraph (b) of this subsection (12) are intended to clarify, based on the decision of the Colorado court of appeals in Independence Institute v. Coffman, 209 P.3d 1130 (Colo. App. 2008), cert. denied, — U.S. —, 130 S. Ct. 165, 175 L. Ed. 479 (2009), section 2 (10) (a) (I) of article XXVIII of the state constitution and not to make a substantive change to said section 2 (10) (a) (I).

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 [Secretary]

The Colorado secretary of state. C.R.S. § 1-1.5-102.

Definition [Committee]

The committee of signers described in section 1-12-108(2). C.R.S. § 1-12-100.5.

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