(1)The general assembly hereby finds and declares that:
(a)The general assembly uses both direct expenditure of government funds and special or selective tax relief, which is known as a tax expenditure, to further various public policy goals;
(b)A tax expenditure differs from a direct spending program because a direct spending program continues only if funds are appropriated for each budget period, while the continuation of a tax expenditure generally does not require any legislative action;
(c)In addition, a direct spending program is generally detailed on the expenditure side of the budget, but a tax expenditure is simply included on the revenue side of the budget without itemization;
(d)A tax expenditure should receive a periodic and comprehensive review as to its total cost and effectiveness in achieving its objectives;
(e)It is important that state government be accountable and transparent in such a way that the general public can understand the value of tax expenditures given by the state; and
(f)In the past, the department of revenue has published a Colorado tax profile study, which included a substantial amount of useful information about state and local taxes.
(2)In enacting this part 3, it is the intent of the general assembly to create a means for providing the general assembly and the public with this vital tax-related information in a biennial tax profile and tax expenditure report.
(3)The general assembly must spend its resources wisely and it is beneficial to the state to know whether the tax expenditures that are in place are accomplishing the goals they were intended to meet. In enacting section 39-21-305, it is the intent of the general assembly that the state auditor’s evaluation will provide the state with factual evidence of whether the state’s tax expenditures achieve the objectives they are intended to achieve, including economic development, assisting beneficiaries, and promoting the health, safety, and welfare of the public, including the business environment. Additionally, it is the intent of the general assembly that the state auditor’s evaluation:
(a)Compares the state’s tax expenditures with other state’s tax expenditures;
(b)Compares the effect of the state’s tax expenditures on competition;
(c)Measures the effect of the state’s tax expenditures on business and stakeholder needs;
(d)Determines whether the state’s tax expenditures are administered efficiently and transparently with defined performance measures that support accountability; and
(e)Analyzes how the state’s tax expenditures serve the public’s interests by protecting taxpayer dollars and how the state’s tax expenditures ensure cost-effectiveness.
Section 39-21-301 — Legislative declaration,
https://leg.colorado.gov/sites/default/files/images/olls/crs2023-title-39.pdf (accessed Oct. 20, 2023).