The formal statutory responsibilities of Colorado’s lieutenant governor are quite minimal, compared to other states. There are four areas where the lieutenant governor has been granted a policy role by state legislators, including direct management of two state commissions, oversight of gubernatorial recall elections, and assisting in K-12 education policy formation.
First, regarding commissions established by the legislature, the lieutenant governor has been granted formal authority over the Governor’s Commission on Community Service, which is a board dedicated to aspects of civic responsibility and volunteerism throughout Colorado. In addition, the lieutenant governor is designated by statute as the Chair of the Colorado Commission on Indian Affairs. According to the commission’s webpage, the responsibility of this board is to “serve as the official liaison between the Southern Ute Indian and Ute Mountain Ute Tribes and the State of Colorado.”
Further, in the event that a sitting governor is ever the subject of a recall from the electorate, the lieutenant governor has been designated by the legislature to perform the formal duties of the recall process regularly overseen by the Governor—specifically, the setting of a formal date for a recall election, once all requirements have been met. Finally, in the area of Pre-K to Post-Secondary education policy, the lieutenant governor’s office—specifically, their “early childhood policy team”—has been granted formal permission to provide staff support, participate in regional education meetings, and assist with school readiness efforts.
With almost non-existent constitutional power, and statutory power that can be best described as weak, Colorado’s lieutenant governor is almost utterly dependent upon the governor they are serving with for any type of formal, concrete policy making role in Colorado state government.
State of Colorado. Colorado Revised Statutes Title 24, Article 20, Part 501. Denver.
State of Colorado. Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 24, Article 44, Part 104. Denver.
State of Colorado, Commission of Indian Affairs. “About Us.” https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/ccia/about-us-40. Accessed October 27, 2018.
State of Colorado. Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 1, Article 12, Part 121. Denver.
State of Colorado. Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 22, Article 7, Part 1010. Denver.
State of Colorado. Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 22, Article 7, Part 1011. Denver.