Colorado governor signs $34 billion budget into law, setting aside historic reserves and funding $800M stimulus package |

Colorado governor signs $34 billion budget into law, setting aside historic reserves and funding $800M stimulus package

The budget does not include $3.8 billion in federal coronavirus stimulus money heading to Colorado as part of the American Rescue Plan

Gov. Jared Polis signed Colorado’s $34.1 billion fiscal year 2021-22 budget into law on Monday, restoring cuts made as the coronavirus crisis descended on the state last year while also saving a historic amount for future economic downturns.

The Joint Budget Committee, the legislature’s budget-writing panel, had to contend with constantly changing tax-revenue projections that were made uncertain by the pandemic.

“This is the culmination of a year-long process — and it’s always hard. But this is the hardest it’s ever been because of the changing numbers,” Polis said just before signing Senate Bill 205 at the Capitol.

Gov. Jared Polis speaks before signing Colorado's 2021-22 fiscal year budget into law.

The budget takes effect in July, when the next fiscal year begins. It sets aside more than $1.5 billion for Colorado’s reserve fund that can be tapped by future legislatures. It also includes 3% raises for state employees, $480 million to reduce Colorado’s annual K-12 school funding shortfall and a $20 million line item to create hundreds of new around-the-clock care slots for people with developmental disabilities.

Also in the budget is $800 million for a state coronavirus stimulus package, the largest slice of which is being dedicated to infrastructure projects. Bills that are part of the package are still being debated in the legislature.

The governor called the budget “an investment in our children, an investment in our future.”

To read the rest of the Colorado Sun article, click here.

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