The state does not have the revenue to cover all its obligations. Many of you know I originally campaigned on fixing this mess, and I have and will continue to do so. I have sponsored legislation to increase the General Assembly's flexibility to allocate revenues to close budget shortfalls, as well as legislation that is intended to help you understand the issues and the ballot more clearly.
DU Fiscal Policy Analysis:
A recent thorough study done by Denver University outlines some of the core issues of our tax system. Please see below.
DU Study on the Fiscal Sustainability of Colorado State Government:
"Twelve years from now, Colorado will generate only enough sales, income and other general-purpose tax revenue to pay for the three largest programs in the General Fund -- public schools, health care and prisons. There will be no tax revenue for public colleges and universities, no money for the state court system, nothing for child-protection services, nothing for youth corrections, nothing for state crime labs and nothing for other core services of state government. "
"The enormity of this gap suggests that Coloradans consider both tax increases and spending cuts to fill it. Cutting programs to match revenues, without changing the structure of the current tax system, is unrealistic. While this study did not specifically examine how expenditures for each department could be trimmed, the degree of cuts necessary to rectify the structural imbalance likely prohibits an all-cuts solution. Health care and human services, the second- and fifth-largest programs in the General Fund, cannot be substantially reduced without raising costs in other areas, sacrificing federal funding, risking litigation or jeopardizing the welfare of some of the neediest Coloradans. Deeper cuts to K-12 education, the largest General Fund program and 40 percent of the total, eventually would violate the provisions of Amendment 23."
"In essence, there needs to be a combination of tax increases and spending cuts , the result of which will be a sustainable way of funding the core services of state government well into the future."