Colorado State Personnel System Amendment, Amendment S (2012)

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Amendment S
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Type:legislatively-referred constitutional amendment
Constitution:Colorado Constitution
Referred by:Colorado Legislature
Topic:Admin. of gov't.
The Colorado State Personnel System Amendment was on the November 6, 2012 ballot in the state of Colorado as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment, where it was approved. The measure, introduced during 2012 state legislative session, changed aspects to the state personnel system.[1]

Specifically, the measure implemented certain testing methods for job applicants, restricted the number of finalists for a particular job or position, placed limits on the hiring temporary workers and required that applicants be residents of the state, according to reports. The formal title of the measure was House Concurrent Resolution 1001.[1]

Election results

See also: 2012 ballot measure election results

The following are official election results:

Colorado Amendment S
Approveda Yes 1,276,405 56.35%

Results via Colorado Secretary of State.

Text of the measure

Ballot language

The ballot language of the measure read as follows:[2]

Shall there be an amendment to the Colorado constitution concerning the state personnel system, and, in connection therewith, expanding the veterans' preference; increasing the number of candidates eligible to be appointed to a position; adjusting the duration of allowable temporary employment; allowing the flexibility to remove a limited number of positions from the system; modifying the residency requirement; adjusting the terms of service for members of the state personnel board; and requiring merit-based appointments to be made through a comparative analysis process?[3]


  • The main campaign in favor of the measure was Vote Yes on S.
  • Three Colorado Governors, one current and three former, stated their support for the measure. The three governors were: John Hickenlooper, Bill Ritter and Bill Owens.[4]
  • According to George Merritt, spokesperson for the “Yes on S” campaign, "We haven’t updated the way the state manages its employees in 40 years. (Amendment S) will help it run more like a business and improve customer services for everyone who interacts with the state.”[5]


  • According to reports, there was no formal opposition to the measure.
  • Those who did oppose the measure stated that the proposal gave the governor and the state personnel director too much power over the state personnel process and would remove protections to state employees from political influence.[5]
  • According to arguments submitted to the Colorado Secretary of State, "Evaluating qualifications, rather than using numerical exam scores, makes it more difficult for employers to objectively compare candidates. The new system could make it easier to hire persons based on political or personal connections rather than merit and result in more appeals of hiring decisions. In addition, the new exemptions could displace experienced existing state employees with political appointees."[6]
  • Also stated in the arguments: "The measure allows the Governor to remove members of the constitutionally independent State Personnel Board without cause."[6]

Path to the ballot

Two-thirds of each chamber of the Colorado General Assembly must vote affirmatively for a proposed amendment in order for it to go on the statewide ballot for potential voter ratification.

See also

Suggest a link

External links