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Colorado Law and Legal Research

Colorado legal resources and guides


The Colorado Government consists of three distinct branches of government as established by Article III of the Constitution of Colorado: the Executive Branch, Legislative Branch, and the Judicial Branch.  These branches each have several departments and offices within them and those departments and offices are organized as follows:

Executive Branch Officers

The Executive Branch is the largest branch of government in Colorado and is responsible for executing and enforcing the laws of Colorado.  The duties, functions, and structure of the Executive Branch are defined by Article IV of the Colorado Constitution and further defined by Title 24 of the Colorado Revised Statutes.  Accordingly, the Executive Branch includes the following officers:

Governor: The Governor is charged with taking care that the laws of the State are faithfully executed.  The Governor's other powers include: receiving and conveying information about the condition of the state, convening special sessions of the legislature or senate, signing or vetoing bills, vetoing items in bills, and naming people to the state boards and commissions.

Lieutenant Governor: The Lt. Governor oversees some of the state boards and commissions and temporarily fills in for the Governor when the Governor is outside the State of Colorado or is otherwise unable to perform the gubernatorial obligations.

Secretary of State:  The Secretary of State oversees the elections and enforces the election laws of the state.  The Secretary of State is also charged with keeping and maintaining all the laws of Colorado, as well as bonds, books, records, maps, registers, and papers of a public character that are deposited with the state.

State Treasurer:  The State Treasurer receives and invests state funds and pays the bills of the state.  The State Treasurer must prepare quarterly reports regarding the state's finances and furnish other information regarding state funds when requested.

Attorney General:  The AG functions as legal counsel for the state and is responsible for providing legal counsel and advice to each department, division, board, bureau and agency of the state government other than the legislative branch.  The AG also represents the state in all legal actions and proceedings.

Administrative Agencies

To support the executive branch officers in executing and enforcing the laws of the state, the executive branch also includes a large number of different state boards, commissions, offices and agencies.  Additionally, to further support the enforcement of and compliance with the laws of the state, the legislative branch often grants these state agencies quasi-legislative and quasi-judicial authority.  When granted this authority, state agencies may promulgate rules and adjudicate matters regarding those rules.

A list of agencies, their functions and contact information can be obtained on the State of Colorado website under State Agencies.

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