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Colorado Revised Statutes Title 1. Elections § 1-45-117. State and political subdivisions--limitations on contributions

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(1)(a)(I) No agency, department, board, division, bureau, commission, or council of the state or any political subdivision of the state shall make any contribution in campaigns involving the nomination, retention, or election of any person to any public office, nor shall any such entity make any donation to any other person for the purpose of making an independent expenditure, nor shall any such entity expend any moneys from any source, or make any contributions, to urge electors to vote in favor of or against any:

(A) Statewide ballot issue that has been submitted for the purpose of having a title designated and fixed pursuant to section 1-40-106(1) or that has had a title designated and fixed pursuant to that section;

(B) Local ballot issue that has been submitted for the purpose of having a title fixed pursuant to section 31-11-111 or that has had a title fixed pursuant to that section;

(C) Referred measure, as defined in section 1-1-104(34.5);

(D) Measure for the recall of any officer that has been certified by the appropriate election official for submission to the electors for their approval or rejection.

(II) However, a member or employee of any such agency, department, board, division, bureau, commission, or council may respond to questions about any such issue described in subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (a) if the member, employee, or public entity has not solicited the question. A member or employee of any such agency, department, board, division, bureau, commission, or council who has policy-making responsibilities may expend not more than fifty dollars of public moneys in the form of letters, telephone calls, or other activities incidental to expressing his or her opinion on any such issue described in subparagraph (I) of this paragraph (a).

(b)(I) Nothing in this subsection (1) shall be construed as prohibiting an agency, department, board, division, bureau, commission, or council of the state, or any political subdivision thereof from expending public moneys or making contributions to dispense a factual summary, which shall include arguments both for and against the proposal, on any issue of official concern before the electorate in the jurisdiction. Such summary shall not contain a conclusion or opinion in favor of or against any particular issue. As used herein, an issue of official concern shall be limited to issues that will appear on an election ballot in the jurisdiction.

(II) Nothing in this subsection (1) shall be construed to prevent an elected official from expressing a personal opinion on any issue.

(III) Nothing in this subsection (1) shall be construed as prohibiting an agency, department, board, division, bureau, commission, or council of the state or any political subdivision thereof from:

(A) Passing a resolution or taking a position of advocacy on any issue described in subparagraph (I) of paragraph (a) of this subsection (1);  or

(B) Reporting the passage of or distributing such resolution through established, customary means, other than paid advertising, by which information about other proceedings of such agency, department, board, division, bureau, or council of the state or any political subdivision thereof is regularly provided to the public.

(C) Nothing in this subsection (1) shall be construed as prohibiting a member or an employee of an agency, department, board, division, bureau, commission, or council of the state or any political subdivision thereof from expending personal funds, making contributions, or using personal time to urge electors to vote in favor of or against any issue described in subparagraph (I) of paragraph (a) of this subsection (1).

(2) The provisions of subsection (1) of this section shall not apply to:

(a) An official residence furnished or paid for by the state or a political subdivision;

(b) Security officers who are required to accompany a candidate or the candidate's family;

(c) Publicly owned motor vehicles provided for the use of the chief executive of the state or a political subdivision;

(d) Publicly owned aircraft provided for the use of the chief executive of the state or of a political subdivision or the executive's family for security purposes;  except that, if such use is, in whole or in part, for campaign purposes, the expenses relating to the campaign shall be reported and reimbursed pursuant to subsection (3) of this section.

(3) If any candidate who is also an incumbent inadvertently or unavoidably makes any expenditure which involves campaign expenses and official expenses, such expenditures shall be deemed a campaign expense only, unless the candidate, not more than ten working days after the such expenditure, files with the appropriate officer such information as the secretary of state may by rule require in order to differentiate between campaign expenses and official expenses. Such information shall be set forth on a form provided by the appropriate officer. In the event that public moneys have been expended for campaign expenses and for official expenses, the candidate shall reimburse the state or political subdivision for the amount of money spent on campaign expenses.

(4)(a) Any violation of this section shall be subject to the provisions of sections 9(2) and 10(1) of article XXVIII of the state constitution or any appropriate order or relief, including an order directing the person making a contribution or expenditure in violation of this section to reimburse the fund of the state or political subdivision, as applicable, from which such moneys were diverted for the amount of the contribution or expenditure, injunctive relief, or a restraining order to enjoin the continuance of the violation.

(b) If a board, commission, or council is found to have made a contribution or expenditure in violation of this section, an individual member of the board, commission, or council who voted in favor of or otherwise authorized the contribution or expenditure may be ordered to reimburse an amount pursuant to subsection (4)(a) of this section as long as the amount does not exceed the amount ordered to be reimbursed by any other individual of the board, commission, or council who voted in favor or otherwise authorized the contribution or expenditure.

Cite this article: FindLaw.com - Colorado Revised Statutes Title 1. Elections § 1-45-117. State and political subdivisions--limitations on contributions - last updated January 01, 2022 | https://codes.findlaw.com/co/title-1-elections/co-rev-st-sect-1-45-117/


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