By Alla Raykin and Tim Gustafson

The Colorado Department of Revenue determined that energy purchased by a television broadcaster is exempt from sales tax when used to transmit broadcasts, but taxable when used for other office purposes. Colorado imposes sales tax on electricity and natural gas for commercial consumption. The Department analyzed possible exemptions applicable to the broadcaster’s use of energy and concluded that the 1937 statute exempting “radio communication” extends to television broadcasting today. However, the exemption, read narrowly, does not extend to energy used for office lighting, computers, printers, cameras, stage lighting and heating of office space. CO GIL-16-014