Colorado Gov. Jared Polis greets the crowd as he walks to the podium to deliver his second State of the State address at the state Capitol on Jan. 9, 2020 in Denver. (Kathryn Scott, Special to The Colorado Sun)
Gov. Jared Polis announced a task force in January to study the state’s tax breaks, building on the General Assembly’s efforts, but it may stall
After years of groundwork, 2020 was supposed to be the time for Colorado tax reform.
Democratic Gov. Jared Polis kicked off his second year in office by doubling down on his pledge to eliminate special interest tax breaks to fund broad tax cuts. A legislative study group came into the session with an agenda of its own. And the state auditor’s office in January released a damning evaluation of one of the state’s most expansive — and controversial — tax breaks, the Colorado enterprise zone program.
Two months later, the tax overhaul effort is suddenly in limbo, like most everything else. The coronavirus has uprooted the legislative session, halting deliberations indefinitely. And even if lawmakers return to their duties, it’s not clear that a tax code rewrite will be a priority when the legislature reboots.
“Right now, nobody knows what’s going to happen,” said Rep. Adrienne Benavidez, the Commerce City Democrat who chaired the interim study committee.