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Resolutions and Memorials

Question

What is a concurrent resolution?

A concurrent resolution is a resolution that proposes one of the following:
• Changes to the Colorado Constitution;
• Ratification of an amendment to the U.S. Constitution; or
• A constitutional convention.

Is there a limit on the number of concurrent resolutions I can introduce?

Yes and No. Pursuant to House Rule 26 (g), members of the House of Representatives may not introduce more than two House concurrent resolutions during a regular or special session. There is no such limit for the members of the Senate. Also, section 2(2) of article XIX of the Colorado Constitution only allows six articles of the Constitution to be referred to the people for amendment at a biennial regular general election.

Is there a deadline for requesting concurrent resolutions or for getting them introduced?

Yes. In 2019, concurrent resolutions must be requested by the 85th legislative day (March 29, 2019) and may not be introduced after the 90th legislative day (April 3, 2019) without permission from the appropriate Committee on Delayed Bills.

Are concurrent resolutions assigned to committees of reference?

Yes. Under House Rule 26 (b) and Senate Rule 30 (a)(2) and (3) , concurrent resolutions are treated like bills and assigned to one or more committees of reference and may be additionally assigned or referred to the Appropriations Committee.

What is the vote requirement for concurrent resolutions?

Before a concurrent resolution that proposes an amendment to the Colorado Constitution is submitted to the people for a vote, it must pass by a two-thirds vote of all members elected to both the House of Representatives and the Senate. The ratification of an amendment to the U.S. Constitution requires a two-thirds vote of the House of Representatives but only a simple majority of the Senate.

Is there a limit on the number of concurrent resolutions that the General Assembly can pass?

No. However, as mentioned above, the Colorado Constitution only allows six articles of the Constitution to be referred to the people for amendment at a biennial regular general election.

Are concurrent resolutions sent to the Governor for his or her signature?

No. A concurrent resolution is not presented to the Governor for signature. Concurrent resolutions that propose amendments to the Colorado Constitution are delivered to the Secretary of State to be placed on the ballot at the next election.

At what election cycle can a concurrent resolution proposing an amendment to the Colorado Constitution be referred to the voters for approval?

An amendment to the Colorado Constitution is referred to the people at the biennial regular general election unless the amendment relates to state matters arising under section 20 of article X of the Constitution (TABOR), in which case it can be referred at the odd-numbered year election.

What happens if the voters don't approve a concurrent resolution amending the Colorado Constitution?

The provision of the Colorado Constitution proposed for amendment remains unchanged.

What is the difference between a concurrent resolution, a joint resolution, and a resolution?

Concurrent resolutions are limited to changing the Colorado Constitution, ratifying an amendment to the U.S. Constitution, or recommending a constitutional convention.

Joint resolutions concern transactions of business between both chambers or an expression of the will of both chambers on a matter not mentioned in Senate Rule 30A or House Rule 26A. Concurrent and joint resolutions must be adopted by both the House of Representatives and the Senate to take effect.

For passage, a simple resolution requires a majority of votes only in the house of introduction for passage; it does not require action by the opposite chamber. Typically, a simple resolution concerns business transactions of a single chamber or an expression of the will of the chamber on a matter not mentioned in Senate Rule 30A or House Rule 26A.

How is a memorial different from a resolution?

In contrast from the description of resolutions above, under House Rule 26 (a)(4) and Senate Rule 30 (d) , a memorial or joint memorial may honor a deceased member of the General Assembly, past or current. A Senate memorial may also honor other designated deceased persons or may memorialize Congress to act on a particular matter.

Is there a limit on the number of resolutions and memorials I can introduce?

Pursuant to House Rule 26, a representative may not introduce more than two House resolutions or joint resolutions (total) during a regular or special session, except with permission from the House Committee on Delayed Bills. The House does not limit the number of joint memorials or memorials a representative may introduce. Similarly, under Senate Rule 30, a senator may not introduce more than three Senate joint resolutions or Senate resolutions (total) during a regular or special session, except with permission from the Senate Committee on Delayed Bills. The Senate does not limit the number of joint memorials or memorials that a senator may introduce.

Is there a deadline for requesting resolutions and memorials or for getting them introduced?

Yes. In general, unless resolutions and memorials concern the business of either chamber, they must be requested by the 87th legislative day (April 7, 2017) and may not be introduced after the 90th legislative day (April 10, 2017) without permission of the Committee on Delayed Bills.

Are resolutions and memorials assigned to committees of reference?

Generally, memorials that concern a deceased member of the General Assembly, past or current, or other deceased designated person are not assigned to a committee of reference. Senate memorials memorializing Congress, Senate joint resolutions, Senate resolutions, House resolutions, and House joint resolutions may be assigned to a committee of reference at the discretion of the President of the Senate or the Speaker of the House.

What is the vote requirement for resolutions and memorials?

Joint resolutions, resolutions, joint memorials, and memorials require a majority vote for passage.

Are resolutions and memorials sent to the Governor for his or her signature?

Some statutorily required joint resolutions are presented to the Governor for signature. Most resolutions, joint resolutions, memorials, and joint memorials, however, do not go to the Governor for signature.

What is a tribute, and how do I request one?

Tributes are non-legislative actions that do not require introduction or floor action. They are used to express the sentiment of one or both of the chambers in situations such as recognizing individuals' service in the military, greeting prominent visitors to the state, offering congratulations on significant public achievements, and commemorating an individual or organization for a significant event or accomplishment. You will find more detailed information about tributes in House Rule 26A and Senate Rule 30A.

Unlike resolutions and memorials that are drafted by the OLLS staff, the staff of each chamber's enrolling room write the tributes and the Secretary of the Senate or the Chief Clerk of the House issues them. To request a tribute, you should contact the Secretary or Chief Clerk, as applicable, or the enrolling room staff of your chamber. The enrolling rooms are located adjacent to each chamber.