Campus & Community / Magazine Feature

Amendment 54 declared unconstitutional

The fight over Colorado’s Amendment 54 ended recently when the Colorado Supreme Court declared it unconstitutional.

The constitutional amendment — which passed by a slim margin in November 2008 — placed restrictions on certain political activities of holders of sole-source government contracts that exceed $100,000. It extended those restrictions to all of the organization’s trustees, officers and their family members.

The University of Denver joined a lawsuit against Amendment 54 asserting that it was unconstitutional.  

In addition to DU, the list of plaintiffs included Pat Hamill, president and CEO of Oakwood Homes and a member of DU’s Board of Trustees and other community organizations; Dan Ritchie, chancellor emeritus of the University and chairman and CEO of the Denver Center for the Performing Arts; Denver City Councilman Charlie Brown; and the Children’s Hospital.

Plaintiffs argued that the ballot initiative violates free speech and association clauses on the first and fourteenth amendments of the U.S. Constitution.

The lawsuit was being funded by the Colorado Preservation Council, a nonprofit corporation consisting of Colorado residents, nonprofits and businesses that were concerned with the broad, vague and burdensome language of Amendment 54.

Comments are closed.