About These Records
The Colorado State Archives holds a variety of resources, which document the legislative history of the state and can help explain the intent behind Colorado law.
Primary, textual sources
- 1876-present Bill Backs (includes all versions of the bill as it passed through the General Assembly)
- 1997-2018 House and Senate Bills available online
- Before 1973 No Committee Summaries were produced
- 1973-1999 Committee Summaries available online through Colorado State Archives
- 2000-2018 Committee Summaries available online through the General Assembly webpage (Use this Guide to Finding Committee Summaries)
Colorado Revised Statutes
- 2013 & 1963 Bound versions
- Current version Colorado Revised Statutes Annotated available online
Session Laws of Colorado
- 1877-present Bound versions available at State Archives
- 1861-2021 Session Laws available online through the William A. Wise Law Library (CU-Boulder)
- 1993-present Session Laws available online through the Office of Legislative Legal Services
House and Senate Journals
- 1861-present Paper versions (some journals missing, may be bound or loose leaf papers)
- 1861-2021 House and Senate Journals available through the William A Wise Law Library (CU-Boulder)
After passage of the Colorado Sunshine Law in 1973, Legislative Committee Hearings and Floor Sessions were to be recorded and made available to the public. These audio recordings are available for research purposes at the Colorado State Archives.
- 1973-2011 Find out about requesting a recording - FAQ below
- 2012-present Listen online through the General Assembly webpage
1973-2001 Yes. Due to technical difficulties and deterioration of the tapes over time, some sessions were not recorded or are inaudible. Also, because of the rapid deterioration of both the tapes and the machines to play them on, un-transferred hearings before 2002 must be transferred to digital format by trained archival staff. If the bill in question has already been digitized, then you can contact us to schedule an appointment to listen at the Archives.
2002-2011 Maybe. It depends on your preference. You can contact us to schedule an appointment to listen to this audio for free at the State Archives. If you want to listen at home or the office, though, you will need to request a copy.
2012-present No. Listen online on the General Assembly webpage.
No. There are no prepared transcripts available for General Assembly proceedings at the Archives.
The short answer: if it hasn't been recorded yet, we don't know.
Once we know the bill number we have to find out the committee the bill was assigned to as well as the date and time it was discussed there. Then, if applicable, we do the same for the committee in the opposite house. Using Committee Summary Reports we can find out precisely how long the bill was discussed in committee. Floor debate in the House and Senate is harder to pin down. There are no timestamped records of the proceedings, so we never know with 100% certainty how long the recording of the floor debates will be. That said, there is a reliable rule of thumb. One hour in committee usually means 10-15 minutes of floor debate.
If you have access to Daily Status Sheets and Committee Summaries you can estimate the amount of time your bill was discussed using the same process described above.
Our fees change every fiscal year.
If the bill you are researching has been recorded, it will be 2 weeks or less.
If the bill you are researching has never been recorded, it generally takes 4-6 weeks. These requests are time-intensive projects.
All requests are handled on a first come, first served basis.
Rush services are not available.
All legislative resources at the State Archives are organized by bill number. You will need the annotation from the CRS section of interest, which will enable you to track the history of the section to session law and other relevant resources.
The only information we need to fulfill your request is the bill number. Once you have that information you can MAKE A REQUEST.