• In response to TABOR’s erosion of the state’s revenue base and increasing K-12 costs, Colorado voters adopt “Amendment 23” to the state constitution which required the state to fund K-12 at a minimum amount every year, regardless of economic conditions:
  • Required the state to annually fund K-12 education by an amount equal to the rate of growth in student enrollment plus inflation.  (A23’s funding mandate was originally interpreted to apply to BOTH the amount of “base” funding AND the additional “factor” funding to address “school disparity” between student populations; the “factor” funding requirement was later eliminated in 2010 through the legislature’s reinterpretation of Amendment 23.)
  • Required the state to increase K-12 funding by an additional 1% per year for the 10-year period 2001-10 in an attempt to restore K-12 funding to 1988 levels.
  • Created the State Education Fund (SEF) and required that an amount equal to one-third of one percent of taxable income be diverted to the fund annually, or about 7.2% of the total revenue which the state collects through its income tax.  Money in the SEF may be used to help meet the minimum K-12 funding requirements which Amendment 23 also established.
  • While Amendment 23 provided for more state funding for K-12 education, it did nothing to address the adverse effects of TABOR and Gallagher on local tax bases, nor did it attempt to address the increasing disparity in local mill levys.

 

 

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