The beginning of the 2022-23 budget cycle began on September 21, 2021 with the September Revenue Forecast presentations from Legislative Council Staff (LCS) and the Office of State Planning and Budgeting (OSPB). Both forecasts highlighted excess revenue in fiscal years (FY) 2020-21, 2021-22, and 2022-23. LCS projects $3.3 billion is available above the 15% required reserve and can be spent in 2022-23. This funding is available due to excess funds above the required reserve in FY 2020-21 ($2.8 billion) and FY 2021-22 ($1.9 billion) and continued growth in income and sales tax collections. Colorado is also projected to exceed the Tabor Cap in FY 2021-22 ($1 billion) and FY 2022-23 ($1.2 billion) and did exceed the TABOR Cap in FY 2020-21 by $471.4 million.
Economists also project a 5.2% CPI-U inflation rate that could decrease in the coming quarters as supply and demand pressures decreases in various industries and fiscal stimulus wanes.
Joint Budget Committee (JBC) members recognized in both presentations the unequal impacts rural Coloradans, Coloradans of color, and low income Coloradans will continue to experience. This can be seen in the unemployment rates by demographic groups, the continued unemployment in lower wage jobs, and the slower employment growth by region in Colorado.
Links to both presentations and full forecasts can be found below: