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Legislative Budget and Policy Analyst

Job description:

As part of the non-partisan staff for the Colorado State Legislature's Joint Budget Committee (JBC), Legislative Budget and Policy Analysts review the management, operations, programs, and fiscal needs of state agencies.

Analysts help the JBC develop the State budget, which totaled over $30.0 billion in fiscal year 2019-20. Analysts evaluate agency budget requests and provide recommendations to the JBC through written documents and public testimony. This process requires interactions with state agencies, legislators, private stakeholders, and interested members of the public. After the JBC makes budget decisions, analysts write and formalize the annual budget bill for introduction to the state legislature.

In addition to the budget process, other duties include: analyzing the fiscal impact of legislation, informing and working with attorneys to write budget-related bills, preparing amendments for bills that require State funding, performing research for legislators, staffing the Appropriations Committees, and coordinating and performing central tasks within the office.

Qualifications and skills:

Analysts must be able to work with people with diverse experiences, interests, and knowledge levels, and the office values candidates from a variety of backgrounds. The position requires:

  • Quantitative and policy analyses
  • Written and verbal communication
  • Independent work to meet deadlines

Minimum qualifications include: a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university; a responsible work history; and five years of professional work experience. Graduate coursework may substitute for up to two of the five years of work experience. Data visualization experience is desirable.

Compensation:

Annual salary of $63,000, with the opportunity to progress over time based on performance. While JBC staff are exempt from the State classified personnel system, salary ranges are comparable to similar positions within the classified system. The office includes a total of 13 analyst positions with salary ranges comparable to “Budget Analyst II” (this entry level position) up to a “Budget and Policy Analyst V”. JBC staff are offered the same health, disability, and retirement benefits that are available to classified state employees, and they earn 15 days of annual leave and 10 days of sick leave in their first year.

How to Apply:

Applications will be accepted until July 31, or until the position is filled. In order to be considered for the position, e-mail a cover letter and resume to the following address:

Carolyn Kampman, Staff Director
jbc.ga@state.co.us
Joint Budget Committee
200 E 14th Ave, 3rd Floor
Denver, CO 80203

For more information about our office and the Analyst role, please see our website: http://leg.colorado.gov/agencies/joint-budget-committee.  No telephone calls please.

 

Information for Those Interested in Joining the JBC Staff

Career Opportunities with the Joint Budget Committee Staff

The non-partisan Joint Budget Committee Staff (JBC Staff) supports the Joint Budget Committee in the annual budget process for all state agencies.  Consisting of a total of six members, including three from the House of Representatives and three from the Senate, the Joint Budget Committee writes the annual appropriations bill – called the Long Bill – supporting the operations of state government.  The Committee relies upon the input and recommendations of the JBC Staff to develop the budget and allocate resources among state agencies.  Employment as a JBC analyst thus provides a unique opportunity to learn about and influence state government operations.      

The JBC Staff includes thirteen analysts, two support staff, and a Staff Director.  Each analyst is responsible for specific agencies or portions of agencies and individually presents analysis and recommendations to the Committee in a public forum.  Because all documents and presentations are public, successful analysts require quality writing and public speaking skills. 

All analysts have bachelor’s degrees; the majority also have advanced degrees.  The analysts represent an array of backgrounds and experience.  The office does not hire analysts based on specific topics or interest, and a broad interest in state government and public policy is necessary.  This design allows individual analysts to work with a wide variety of agencies and public policy issues during their time with the JBC Staff.    

The Annual Budget Cycle

The workflow of the JBC Staff follows the annual budget cycle.  Colorado’s fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30, while the budget process uses the following timeline.      

  • November 1: The Governor submits the annual budget request for the following fiscal year to the General Assembly.
  • November and December: The JBC Staff analysts write and present briefing documents on their respective agencies’ budget requests.  Each briefing document discusses the agency’s budget request as well as potential issues that the analyst wishes to bring to the Committee’s attention.  All briefing documents are published on the internet and available to the public, and all presentations are open to the public, broadcast on the internet, and recorded for the public record. 
  • November and December: Following the staff briefing, the Committee holds a hearing with each agency to discuss the budget request and any other issues of interest to the Committee.  Staff analysts prepare a detailed agenda for the hearing based on the topics of interest to the Committee.
  • January: With the start of the annual legislative session in January, the Committee considers agencies’ requests for mid-year funding adjustments referred to as supplemental appropriations.  The JBC Staff analyzes agency requests, makes recommendations to the Committee, and drafts the necessary legislation to adjust funding.
  • February and March: During the “figure setting” process in February and March, analysts present detailed recommendations regarding the funding and staffing for each state agency for the upcoming fiscal year. 
  • March and April:  Following figure setting, the JBC Staff drafts the annual Long Bill and all amendments to the Long Bill as it proceeds through the legislative process.  
  • Throughout the legislative session, the JBC Staff also analyzes the fiscal impact of bills being considered by the appropriations committees and provides staff support to the appropriations committees.
  • May and June: The JBC Staff prepares the annual Appropriations Report detailing appropriations to each state agency.
  • May through October: Analysts meet with agencies, conduct site visits to better understand agency operations and policy issues, research potential issues for the fall briefing process, and prepare for the briefing and figure setting processes.   

Hiring Process and Timing

When vacancies occur, the JBC Staff advertises open positions following the end of the legislative session in May and hires new analysts during the summer.  The office does not fill vacancies during the legislative session.