In January, 2021, we knew Michael Fields (Exec. Dir. of Colorado Rising State Action, and associated with American For Prosperity) would be pursuing more citizen initiatives this year negatively impacting those public services that rely on local funding. Fields has been successful with Initiative #27, which was just recently approved for petition circulation (to collect signatures) with a deadline of August 2, 2021 to gather the number of signatures required. If they are successful, the initiative will be placed on the 2021 November ballot.
If this measure is successful at the ballot box, it would reduce local funding for schools by $250 million the first year alone. When our local funding is reduced, so is the funding to our libraries, fire districts, special districts, even cities and counties.
Here’s the language from the non-partisan Legislative Council’s Fiscal Summary:
2021-2022 #27 – Property Tax Assessment Rate Reduction and Voter-Approved Revenue Change
Proponents: Suzanne Taheri Michael Fields
ELECTION YEAR: 2021
A measure to reduce the residential property tax assessment rate from 7.15% to 6.5% and the non-residential property tax assessment rate from 29% to 26.4% with authorization to retain and spend 25 million per year for 5 years credited to homestead exemptions.
As per the Fiscal Summary by Legislative Council Staff:
- Local government impact. By lowering property tax assessment rates, the measure will decrease property tax revenue to local governments statewide by an estimated $1.03 billion, beginning in 2023.
- State expenditures. The measure increases state expenditures to backfill lost property tax revenue to school districts. By lowering property tax assessment rates, the measure will decrease property tax revenue collected by school districts; as a result, the state share of school finance is estimated to increase by approximately $257.7 million in budget year 2022-23 and subsequent years.
- Fiscal Summary by Legislative Council Staff https://leg.colorado.gov/sites/default/files/initiatives/2021%252327FiscalSummary_00.pdf
We strongly urge you to Decline to Sign Initiative #27.
“They say, if you want to know what a community values, look at how its children are treated. If you want a sense of what a community hopes for the future, look at how it values its schools.” Colorado Education Network
Let’s value our children and our schools and not support a measure that will defund them as well as our libraries, fire districts, special districts, cities and counties.