Colorado Secretary of State logo - cube with a C in it

Colorado Secretary
of State Jena Griswold

Colorado Secretary of State logo - Colorado Secretary of State Jena Griswold

Picture of Secretary of State Jena Griswold

Colorado Secretary of State logo - cube with a C in it

Secretary of State
Jena Griswold


Initiative Procedures & Guidelines

SoS home > Elections home > Initiatives home > Initiative procedures & guidelines > Title Board hearing

Title Board hearing

The Title Board will hold public hearings on the first and third Wednesdays of each month that an initiative is filed.

The first Title Board hearing will be the first Wednesday in December after the election and the last hearing will be no later than the third Wednesday in April in the year in which the measure is to be placed on the ballot.

To be considered by the Title Board, a proposed measure must be filed by 3:00 PM on the 12th day before the Title Board hearing. For more information, please see the initiative calendar located on the Secretary of State website.

Responsibilities of the designated representatives

Both designated representatives must appear at any Title Board meeting where the proposed initiative will be considered.

At the first Title Board meeting, the Secretary of State will provide each designated representative with an affidavit form on which the designated representative must affirm that he or she is familiar with the provisions of Article 40 of Title 1, C.R.S., including but not limited to:

  • The prohibition on petition circulators’ use of false addresses in completing circulator affidavits; and
  • The requirements contained in the Summary of Designated Representative’s Responsibilities.

The designated representatives must provide his or her physical address at which legal process may be served. Each designated representative must also include an email address to which all correspondence will be sent, unless the designated representative requests correspondence via mail.

The Secretary of State will provide a notary at the Title Board meeting.

To ensure the Title Board meeting starts on time, designated representatives should arrive 15 minutes early to sign and file the affidavit. Under Colorado law, both designated representatives must appear. No exceptions can be made.

If either designated representative fails to appear at a Title Board meeting or fails to file the affidavit, the Title Board will not set a title for the proposed initiative. If both designated representatives follow the law and appear at the next Title Board Meeting, then the Title Board may consider the proposed initiative at that time.

During the hearing, the Title Board will first determine whether the measure satisfies the single-subject requirements. If the measure does, the Title Board will set a title, ballot title, and submission clause.

In setting a title, the Title Board considers a misleading title will cause public confusion. Whenever possible, the Title Board avoids titles where a general understanding of a “yes” or “no” vote will be unclear. Additionally, the Title Board must set a title that correctly and fairly expresses the true intent and meaning of the measure.

To facilitate ballot title creation, the Title Board will begin with a title draft created by Legislative Legal Services. The Secretary of State’s office will circulate this draft before the meeting so that interested parties have a chance to review it.

For additional information relating to the ballot title and Title Board hearing, see Article V, Section 1(5.5) of the Colorado Constitution; and sections 1-40-106 and 1-40-106.5, C.R.S.

Motion for rehearing

Any proponent or Colorado registered elector may file a motion for rehearing. A registered elector must disagree with either of the following:

  • the Title Board's decision regarding whether a petition meets the single-subject requirement; or
  • the titles and submission clause set by the Title Board.

A motion for rehearing must be typewritten and state the particular grounds for rehearing. If the motion claims that the petition contains more than a single subject, then the motion must, at a minimum, include a short and plain statement of the reasons for the claim. If the motion claims that the title and submission clause set by the title board are unfair or that they do not fairly express the true meaning and intent of the initiative, then the motion must identify the specific wording that is challenged.

The motion for rehearing must be filed with the Secretary of State no later than 5:00 p.m. on the seventh day following the Title Board’s action.

If the Secretary of State’s office receives a motion for rehearing, the office will schedule a rehearing at the next regularly scheduled Title Board meeting. However, if the titles are set at the last meeting in April, the rehearing will be held within forty-eight hours of the seven-day period’s end.

The decision of the title board on any motion for rehearing is final, except as provided under section 1-40-107(2), C.R.S., and no further motion for rehearing may be filed or considered by the Title Board.

For additional information, see section 1-40-107, C.R.S.

Filing an appeal with the Colorado Supreme Court

Any person who is not satisfied with the Title Board’s final decision may file an appeal with the Colorado Supreme Court. Upon request, the Secretary of State will provide:

  • a certified copy of the initiative with the titles and submission clause of the proposed statutory proposition or constitutional amendment; and
  • a certified copy of the motion for rehearing and the ruling.

The certified documents must be filed with the clerk of the Supreme Court within five days from receipt.

The Supreme Court will either affirm the Title Board’s decision or will remand the decision with instructions for the Title Board.

For additional information, see section 1-40-107(2), C.R.S.