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History of TABOR Refund Mechanisms (2015)

State Revenue & Budget
Fiscal Policy & Taxes

This memorandum provides background information on current and past statutory mechanisms used to refund state revenue collected in excess of the spending limit contained in the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR). TABOR allows the state to use “any reasonable method” for refunds, including temporary tax credits or rate reductions.

The General Assembly has created and repealed various mechanisms to refund the state TABOR surplus. In total, 20 refund mechanisms have existed in statute at some point. Seventeen of these have been repealed, and three remain in law as of the end of FY 2014-15. Table 1 on page 9 provides a history of the mechanisms used to refund all TABOR surpluses collected to date.