The bill is contingent on voters approving a related referred measure to annually retain and spend state revenues in excess of the constitutional spending limit. If the measure passes, in years when the state retains and spends revenue under the authority of the measure there will be additional revenue in the general fund exempt account (account). Section 1 of the bill requires 1/3 of this money in the account to be allocated to each of the purposes approved by voters, which are:
- Public schools;
- Higher education; and
- Roads, bridges, and transit.
The general assembly is required to appropriate the money for public schools and higher education for the state fiscal year after the state retains the revenue under the authority of the voter-approved revenue change. The money appropriated for public schools must be distributed on a per pupil basis and used by public schools only for nonrecurring expenses for the purpose of improving classrooms, and it may not be used as part of a district reserve.
The state treasurer is required to transfer the remaining 1/3 of the money to the highway users tax fund (HUTF) after the state treasurer receives a report certifying the state's TABOR revenues (report). Section 3 clarifies that the report must include the money that the state keeps and spends as a result of the 2019 measure, and that this amount must be reported separately from the referendum C money in the account.
Under section 4 the money the state treasurer transfers to the HUTF is allocated 60% to the state highway fund, 22% to counties, and 18% to cities and incorporated towns. Under section 5 no more than 90% of the money allocated to the state highway fund may be expended for highway purposes or highway-related capital improvements and at least 15% must be expended for transit purposes or for transit-related capital improvements.
Section 2 includes a conforming amendment to ensure that the allocation for the referendum C money does not apply to any new revenue in the account as a result of the 2019 voter approval.
(Note: This summary applies to the reengrossed version of this bill as introduced in the second house.)