On Tuesday, July 23, the Board of County Commissioners voted 3-0 to authorize a public vote on whether the county can keep taxes, grants and all other revenue that it collects in excess of limits instituted from the Taxpayer Bill of Rights (TABOR) and other applicable state statutes.
Each registered voter can decide this issue for him- or herself as part of the November 5, 2019 election. The ballot language to be presented to voters is as follows:
Without creating any new tax or increasing the current authorized maximum county mill levy of 21.478 without further voter approval, shall Jefferson County be permitted to retain and spend or reserve all revenues received during 2020 and expiring after 2026 (7 years), notwithstanding limitations on spending and revenue contained in the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights, Article X, Section 20 of the Colorado Constitution (TABOR) and applicable state statues, provided that, the maximum amount which the county may retain and spend or reserve above such limits in 2020 may not exceed $16.1 million (voters should be aware that due to existing spending and revenue limits in TABOR in 2019, a single-family home valued at $400,000 received a reduction in property taxes of approximately $9 a month/$105 year); and shall the county be permitted to retain and spend or reserve beginning in 2027 and thereafter an amount of county revenue that exceeds current spending and revenue limitations but is no greater than the excess local revenues cap, which continues to limit future growth as provided in resolution no. CC19-270, provided that any non-property tax revenue received in 2027 or thereafter may be retained and spent or reserved, notwithstanding limitations on spending and revenue contained in the Taxpayer's Bill of Rights and applicable state statues; and shall such revenue be used to fund the cost of county government for:
With such spending to be reviewed and decided upon by the duly elected Board of County Commissioners as part of the annual budget process?
The following pros and cons are taken from the Ballot Issue Notice (Blue Book) that was mailed to all registered voters:
Summary of Written Comments FOR Ballot Issue No. 1A:
Ballot Issue 1A asks voters to “de-bruce” Jeffco – or temporarily suspend the county’s TABOR cap. This would allow the county to invest tax revenues over the TABOR cap into essential county services that affect our quality of life, such as law enforcement, public safety, road and bridge maintenance, and more.
A yes vote on 1A will:
Summary of Written Comments AGAINST Ballot Issue No. 1A:
The County doesn’t need more revenues; it can balance its budget by making further cuts to public safety, roads, bridges and other county services.Twenty-seven years ago, Colorado voters put TABOR in place for a reason. While 80 percent of Colorado counties have already de-bruced to pay for essential county services, Jeﬀerson County needs to stick to its guns and continue to support TABOR restrictions.
Families and businesses will pay more in taxes in 2020:
Jefferson County enjoys reasonable and proven taxpayer protections through our Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR), which lets county government tax and spend at common sense levels but prevents fiscal irresponsibility.Don’t let the big-money campaign for 1A fool you – it is a tax increase and permanently eliminates these taxpayer protections. Vote NO on 1A!
Ballot Issue 1A will increase cost of housing both for homeowners and renters.
Do you have unlimited income to fund this blank check tax increase?Vote No on 1A. Don’t let them eliminate the taxpayer protections that have served us well for decades.