How Regulation Impacts You

Occupational regulation impacts all Colorado citizens.

State regulation of occupations and businesses exists to protect consumers from unqualified and dishonest practitioners.  This is an important function of the government and is needed in some cases. However, there are negative consequences of regulation and unnecessary, unaccountable regulation can harm the economy.

Colorado regulates a large number of  professions, businesses and functions.  Over 140 are regulated by the Department of Regulatory Agencies alone.

How Does This Impact You?

State regulation frequently creates what are called "barriers to entry".  The Colorado legislature establishes standards or requirements to enter a profession or occupation and then requires a license issued by the state to practice.  Sometimes the government requires a certification or registration, but licensing is most common and the most difficult to obtain.

So we can see that state regulation can reduce supply and competition.  This may harm the state economy as a whole but it can also harm individuals by limiting their employment opportunities.

Regulation of a profession or occupation costs the state money.  Bureaucracy is created to create standards of practice, create regulations that have the force of law, investigate complaints, provide information, and discipline practitioners. Disciplinary cases can result in expensive litigation.

Regulated practitioners pay for the regulation in Colorado.  These costs are passed on to consumers.

Learn about Colorado’s sunset review process and why the Colorado General Assembly created the process to improve regulatory accountability.  You will also find out  how easy it is to participate in the process and help improve Colorado government.