Special Districts

Building new communities through special districts.

Special districts are local governmental entities created or authorized by state law to provide specific infrastructure or to provide specific services in a limited scope. Some levy property taxes or special assessments. Others may function more like a private enterprise and charge fees to cover the costs of providing services. The Spencer Fane Special Districts team has extensive knowledge of the unique legal space occupied by these districts, as well as decades of experience meeting their unique legal needs.


Identifying funding sources, advising on district formation, nurturing new neighborhoods, towns, and cities

Spencer Fane Special District attorneys help homebuilders, commercial property developers, municipalities, and other governmental bodies form taxing districts that help finance the creation of developments and provide community services. In addition, we provide legal representation to help guide operations and services that might not exist without the financing provided by districts.

Special districts, municipalities, and other government organizations rely on our firm to address all their legal needs. We work with fire protection, water and sanitation, park and recreation, metropolitan, and business improvement districts as well as intergovernmental authorities in complex areas of law, including:

  • Finance
  • Water law
  • Environmental law
  • Election law
  • TABOR issues
  • Labor and employment issues
  • Bond financing, through both tax-exempt and taxing entities of counties, municipalities, special districts, and other political subdivisions. We have represented issuers, underwriters, developers, letter of credit providers, investors, and other stakeholders.
  • Litigation, including commercial disputes and all types of associated special district litigation matters such as annexations, elections, land use appeals, tax protests, condemnation, utility rates, construction and contract disputes, licensing, environmental insurance, and public financing disputes.

Clients do not always know about options related to special districts, and we work to identify early funding sources and often continue to provide counsel all the way through years of building out multiple phases of large and complex developments.

In particular, our attorneys were involved with the start of Colorado’s Special District Association more than 40 years ago, and in the decades since we have formed strong ties with key players inside the Colorado state capital. Spencer Fane has represented more than 600 special districts in Colorado, including many of metro Denver’s economically thriving areas.


  • Currently assisting a Business Improvement District in the financing and development of a $35 million visitors center and an additional $30 million in infrastructure to serve associated office, hotel, and retail development.
  • For the past 20 years we have assisted a Metropolitan District that provides recreational facilities and services, including two regional sports complexes providing programs in swimming, gymnastics, hockey, and basketball and adult, teen, child, and toddler activities. This representation includes board representation, and employment, OSHA, ADA, environmental, finance, real estate, and litigation matters.

  • Currently assisting developers through the creation of a variety of taxing district entities that are financing the development of more than 24,000 acres, including the construction of major power, water, sewer, street, and transportation improvements that will ultimately serve not only the land being developed but the entire population of a county and those traveling through it.

Areas of Focus

Pursuant to §32-1-809, Colorado Revised Statutes (SB 09-87): Spencer Fane is pleased to provide Statutory Notices of our Special District Clients needing this service. Please click to view each notice.