Colorado, USA, regional Popular or citizens initiative [PCI] - Initiative

General Typology

Instrument
Popular or citizens initiative [PCI]
Location
Colorado, USA
Political level
regional
Local Name:
Initiative
Normative Level:
constitutional
Legally Binding:
yes
Legally Defined:

Constitution of the State of Colorado
Article V, Section 1
[...]
(2) The first power hereby reserved by the people is the initiative, and signatures by registered electors in an amount equal to at least five percent of the total number of votes cast for all candidates for the office of secretary of state at the previous general election shall be required to propose any measure by petition, and every such petition shall include the full text of the measure so proposed. Initiative petitions for state legislation and amendments to the constitution, in such form as may be prescribed pursuant to law, shall be addressed to and filed with the secretary of state at least three months before the general election at which they are to be voted upon.

(2.5) In order to make it more difficult to amend this constitution, a petition for an initiated constitutional amendment shall be signed by registered electors who reside in each state senate district in Colorado in an amount equal to at least two percent of the total registered electors in the senate district provided that the total number of signatures of registered electors on the petition shall at least equal the number of signatures required by subsection (2) of this section. For purposes of this subsection (2.5), the number and boundaries of the senate districts and the number of registered electors in the senate districts shall be those in effect at the time the form of the petition has been approved for circulation as provided by law.

(4) (b) In order to make it more difficult to amend this constitution, an initiated constitutional amendment shall not become part of this constitution unless the amendment is approved by at least fifty-five percent of the votes cast thereon; except that this paragraph (b) shall not apply to an initiated constitutional amendment that is limited to repealing, in whole or in part, any provision of this constitution.

Source: Constitution of the State of Colorado (accessed 9 June 2017)

Subject Matter:

Enacting laws and constitutional amendments via initiative

Actors

Author:
Citizen
Initiator:
Electorate : 5% of the number of votes cast for Secretary of State in the last general election
Decision maker:
Electorate

Requirements

Number Of Signatures:
5% of the total number of votes for Secretary of State in the last general election (seee below: amendments)
Available Time:
6 months from the time the title and submission clause have been fixed
Turnout Quorum:
Laws: majority In case of constitutional amendments: at least fifty-five percent of the votes cast
Approval Quorum:
Legal source does not mention specific approval quorum
Geographical Quorum:
Signatures needed for constitutional amendments: "registered electors who reside in each state senate district in Colorado in an amount equal to at least two percent of the total registered electors in the senate district provided that the total number of signatures of registered electors on the petition shall at least equal the number of signatures required by subsection (2) of this section." Source: Constitution of the State of Colorado (accessed 9 June 2017)
Excluded Issues:
Other Formal Requirements:

Constitution of the State of Colorado
Article V, Section I
[...]
(6) The petition shall consist of sheets having such general form printed or written at the top thereof as shall be designated or prescribed by the secretary of state; such petition shall be signed by registered electors in their own proper persons only, to which shall be attached the residence address of such person and the date of signing the same. To each of such petitions, which may consist of one or more sheets, shall be attached an affidavit of some registered elector that each signature thereon is the signature of the person whose name it purports to be and that, to the best of the knowledge and belief of the affiant, each of the persons signing said petition was, at the time of signing, a registered elector. Such petition so verified shall be prima facie evidence that the signatures thereon are genuine and true and that the persons signing the same are registered electors.

Colorado Revised Statutes
1-40-108. Petition - time of filing
(1) No petition for any ballot issue shall be of any effect unless filed with the secretary of state within six months from the date that the titles and submission clause have been fixed [...] and unless filed with the secretary of state no later than three months and three weeks before the election at which it is to be voted upon.

Source: Constitution of the State of Colorado and Colorado Revised Statutes (accessed 9 June 2016)

Procedural Elements

Collection Mode:
free
Specify Collection Mode:

1-40-111. Signatures - affidavits - notarization - list of circulators and notaries

(1) Any initiative or referendum petition shall be signed only by registered electors who are eligible to vote on the measure [...]

1-40-112. Circulators - requirements - training

(1) No person shall circulate a petition for an initiative or referendum measure unless the person is a resident of the state, a citizen of the United States, and at least eighteen years of age at the time the petition is circulated.

(2) (a) A circulator who is not to be paid for circulating a petition concerning a ballot issue shall display an identification badge that includes the words "VOLUNTEER CIRCULATOR" in bold-faced type that is clearly legible.

(b) A circulator who is to be paid for circulating a petition concerning a ballot issue shall display an identification badge that includes the words "PAID CIRCULATOR" in bold-faced type that is clearly legible and the name and telephone number of the individual employing the circulator.
[...]
(4) It shall be unlawful for any person to pay a circulator more than twenty percent of his or her compensation for circulating petitions on a per signature or petition section basis.
[...]

1-40-135. Petition entities - requirements - definition
[...]
(2) (a) It is unlawful for any petition entity to provide compensation to a circulator to circulate a petition without first obtaining a license [...]

Source: Colorado Revised Statutes (accessed 9 June 2017)

Wording Of Ballot Question:

Constitution of the State of Colorado, Article V, Section 1

(5.5) No measure shall be proposed by petition containing more than one subject, which shall be clearly expressed in its title [...]

1-40-106. Title board - meetings - ballot title - initiative and referendum

(1) For ballot issues, beginning with the first submission of a draft after an election, the secretary of state shall convene a title board consisting of the secretary of state, the attorney general, and the director of the office of legislative legal services or their designees. The title board, by majority vote, shall proceed to designate and fix a proper fair title for each proposed law or constitutional amendment, together with a submission clause, at public meetings [...]

1-40-115. Ballot - voting - publication

(1) Measures shall appear upon the official ballot by ballot title only. [...]

Source: Constitution of the State of Colorado and Colorado Revised Statutes (accessed 9 June 2017)

Interaction With Authorities:

Constitution of the State of Colorado
Article V, Section 1

(7.5)(a) Before any election at which the voters of the entire state will vote on any initiated or referred constitutional amendment or legislation, the nonpartisan research staff of the general assembly shall prepare and make available to the public the following information in the form of a ballot information booklet:

(I) The text and title of each measure to be voted on;

(II) A fair and impartial analysis of each measure, which shall include a summary and the major arguments both for and against the measure, and which may include any other information that would assist understanding the purpose and effect of the measure. Any person may file written comments for consideration by the research staff during the preparation of such analysis.

Colorado Revised Statutes
1-40-116. Verification - ballot issues - random sampling

(4) The secretary of state shall verify the signatures on the petition by use of random sampling. [...]

Source: Constitution of the State of Colorado (accessed 9 June 2017)

Supervision And Support:

1-40-112. Circulators - requirements - training

[...]
(3) The secretary of state shall develop circulator training programs for paid and volunteer circulators. [...]

Source: Colorado Revised Statutes (sccessed 9 June 2017)

Transparency And Finance:

Campaign finance laws are enforced by the Colorado Secretary of State-Elections Division.

Practice

Archive:
Remarks: