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Ballot Measures for Public School Funding

posted Mar 17, 2016, 9:03 AM by Douglass PTO

Grassroots Powering Education

WHAT TO DO

Recruit another volunteer to join you in carrying a petition. The more the merrier (and the faster we reach our goal of 30,000 signatures)!

Dear Jennifer:

It's what we've been waiting to hear...the ballot measures have been filed! 

Thank you for signing up to gather petition signatures for a citizens initiative this year. The following press release went out yesterday. We wanted to share with you and provide some additional context:

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 8, 2016

Proposals filed to invest in schools, transportation, health and senior services

DENVER — Today, Dan Ritchie and Al Yates on behalf of a bipartisan coalition of Coloradans filed three proposals with Legislative Council in order to place a measure on the November 2016 ballot.  The proposals will allow the state to invest in education, transportation, mental health service and senior services without raising taxes.

“It’s no secret that Colorado is not investing enough in our schools, colleges, roads, mental health care or senior services,” Ritchie, the former chancellor of the University of Denver, stated.

The proposals follow the TABOR (Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights) requirement to ask permission from voters to allow Colorado to keep all tax revenue collected. The proposals also direct legislators to invest any funds above the TABOR limit into education, including pre-school through 12th grade education, vocational education and higher education; transportation, including highways, bridges, underpasses, mass transit and other projects related to transporting people; mental health services and senior services. These proposals do not change TABOR or amend the constitution, and Coloradans will continue to vote on all tax increases.

According to the Colorado Department of Revenue, the average taxpayer will receive a rebate of $13 to $41 in 2016 (the rebate is for the 2014-2015 fiscal year). 

“We are asking voters to allow Colorado to keep all of the revenue the state has already collected and invest it in Colorado’s future. This will make a huge positive impact on our state,” Yates, the former president of Colorado State University, said.  “Most Coloradans know this, and that’s why so many are in favor of investing these funds into our roads, schools, universities, mental health and senior services.” 

“Six out of 10 voters support passage of this initiative, which shows significant support among Colorado voters to invest in important state priorities,” stated Nicole McCleskey with Public Opinion Strategies who conducted an 800 person poll February 4-8th.

“This is all about investing in our future and providing accountability when it comes to our state’s spending,” Yates added. 

The proposals require the Director of Research of the Legislative Council to prepare an annual report stating how the revenues were expended.

Please click here to read language for proposals 116, 117 and 118. 

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A ballot measure is necessary this year because when state revenues grow faster than inflation and growth (like now), Colorado’s legislature is not allowed to keep and invest all the revenues that it collects. It's exciting to see business, civic, and community leaders from across Colorado acknowledging it is time to INVEST IN COLORADO

The proposed ballot measures (proposals 116, 117 and 118) are now moving through the "titling" process, but only one of these proposals will be selected to be placed on November's ballot. We anticipate having petitions available in late April. In the coming weeks, we'll prepare you to carry your petition with training opportunities, talking points and tips for gathering signatures. We'll keep you posted as details develop.

Thanks once again for taking this important step toward better investment in education!  You are the reason we'll be successful in November!

Sincerely,

Sue Catterall
Outreach Director
Great Education Colorado

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