Interpreting a Statute In Colorado

When interpreting a statute, we attempt to implement the intent of the General Assembly. To discern that intent, we look first to the plain language of the statute and interpret statutory terms in accordance with their commonly accepted meanings. Sears v. Romer, 928 P.2d 745 (Colo. App. 1996). A strained or forced construction of a statutory term is to be avoided, and we must look to the context in which a statutory term is employed. Miller v. Byrne, 916 P.2d 566 (Colo. App. 1995). Further, we must construe the statute as a whole so as to give consistent, harmonious, and sensible effect to all its parts and, if possible, give effect to every word in the statute. Zamarripa v. Q & T Food Stores, Inc., 929 P.2d 1332 (Colo. 1997).