Colorado taxpayers will soon receive at least $750 in the mail from a Taxpayer's Bill of Rights refund sent out on Monday.
Around 3.1 million residents who filed state taxes by June 30 are expected to get $750 for individual tax filers and $1,500 for joint filers between now and the end of September, according to Gov. Jared Polis. If Coloradans filed after June 30 but by the extended filing deadline on Oct. 17, they'll get their check in January.
"The governor's tax reform package closed special interest loopholes and increased the size of the rebate by $34 to $50 per person," said Conor Cahill, spokesman for Polis. "In addition to this one-time refund, the income tax for this year is reduced from 4.55% to 4.5% and additional refunds will be made when people file for 2022 in 2023."
The refund — supporters dubbed it the Colorado Cashback Rebate — expedites the 2023 TABOR refund originally scheduled for the spring of 2023, paying back up to 85% of excess state revenue collected last year. Senate Bill 233, signed by Polis in May, created the expedited rebate program.
While the governor and Democratic leaders said the expedited refund will help Colorado families afford basic necessities, such as gas and groceries amid skyrocketing prices and inflation, Republican critics described the refund as a cynical ploy to buy votes before the November election.
The Governor's Office balked at that characterization.
"Gov. Polis believes the government should not unnecessarily hold onto your money for close to a year longer rather than get it back to people as quickly as possible, which is why he and the legislature took this action," Cahill said in response. "Coloradans know that it’s incredibly cynical and purely politically motivated to suggest that because there is an election coming up, it should be used as an excuse to further delay these refunds that are needed by people."
Several Republican lawmakers said Democrats' support of the Colorado Cashback Rebate is hypocritical, as the Colorado Democratic Party’s 2022 platform aimed to repeal TABOR.
"We are glad to see our Democrat colleagues have finally come around to embrace TABOR, even if it comes as a response to the affordability crisis their overzealous policies have created," said Joshua Bly, spokesman for the Colorado Senate Republicans. "Thanks to the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights, the people of Colorado will once again be reunited with their hard-earned tax dollars."
Every full-time Colorado resident who was at least 18 years old on Dec. 31, 2021 can file a tax return to claim the rebate even if they did not have taxable income.
Taxpayers will receive equal payments, regardless of income.
To check or update the address the rebate checks will be mailed to, residents can visit colorado.gov/revenueonline. For more information about the Colorado Cashback Rebate, visit tax.colorado.gov/cash-back.