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Your TABOR Board of Directors
Published: October 12, 2016;
PUEBLO CITY Schools (D60) Board of Education has joined a lawsuit that would overturn the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. Pueblo County District 70 joined the federal case earlier.
Educators have been led to believe that repealing TABOR’s state and local tax and spending restrictions would trickle down into more legislative funding of the public schools. Not so fast. The state’s recent budget history says otherwise.
Since approved by the voters in 1992, TABOR has done what it promised to do, which is to require voter approval before taxes can be raised and to tie revenue increases to Colorado’s overall economic growth unless voters permit.
In fact, state revenues and spending have increased every year under TABOR even under the cap of combined growth in population and inflation.
However, that TABOR requirement leads directly to greater government accountability and transparency. That’s good.
Young misdirects his anger at the duplicate vote. He should instead direct his impatience at the inaccurate information offered by the tax increase proponents.
The Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights requires that you know what the cost will be for any new program or expansion of an existing program. You can weigh whether the price is worth it. The voter then can make an informed decision.
No one wants to give proponents of any measure the incentive to underestimate the cost. Yet, if low-balling the cost helps the measure to pass, there would be pressure for proponents to fudge the numbers. Better to get it right.
Whenever government will grow faster than the automatic increases allowed every year, the voter should know by how much. Voters must demand strict accountability and honesty in creating the estimates. Don’t let tax increase proponents hide the real cost of the programs; don’t let Young mislead you.
There are people who want government to increase its reach into our lives and to spend more of your money on public goods; these folks will always oppose the Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights. Let them present their arguments fairly and truthfully, but they should not argue for eliminating honesty and accountability.
Penn R. Pfiffner, chairman of the TABOR Committee, is a former legislator who has been involved in fiscal policy issues for over three decades.
I’ve got a four-word reason not to vote for Proposition 71, the Nov. 8 ballot issue that would make it harder to amend the Colorado Constitution.
Four words: Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights.
Now, understand: I agree with the sentiment behind Proposition 71. It’s just that voters should fear the likely result: a lifetime of TABOR.
I say this while admitting that proponents of 71 are right. The state constitution is too easy to amend. And TABOR is prima facie evidence of that.
Based on how TABOR has impacted Colorado, the last thing voters should want to do — particularly the voters of Fort Collins — is change the constitution in a way that makes it harder to amend TABOR out of it.
No, don’t make it harder to revoke bad fiscal policy. Give smart fiscal policy an even chance to win.
TABOR, approved by voters in 1992, is not just bad policy, it’s the worst policy Colorado voters ever conjured. Its spending limits impede lawmakers from making the most fundamental policy decisions, whether they involve highways or schools, water or the environment.
When bad economic times hit, state services get clobbered. When good times come around, those services are prevented from reclaiming what ground they lost. TABOR is to blame.
TABOR causes the state to do crazy things like ask voters for permission to spend money they’ve authorized. Right now Fort Collins voters are being asked that very thing. Continue reading
My wife and I have lived in Pueblo West for nearly seven years.
We bought property and built a new home here because of the rural feel, the privacy, the huge vistas and to escape the many downfalls of the city of Pueblo.
Not the least of which was the ceaseless badgering by city council and other government entities for more money for pet projects.
Ballot tax initiatives were repeated ad nauseum due to a refusal to take no for an answer. We grew weary of the arrogance associated with that mindset and having to repeatedly fend off the never ending assaults on our wallets.
Recently, we have witnessed an increase in efforts of this ilk here in Pueblo West. Continue reading
Yup, spend more.
That’s the blueprint for fixing everything.
According to them, more money will solve public education.
Obama’s $870 Billion dollar Stimulus failed because it was too little.
They wanted to spend more, more, more.
Then you looked at the results.
But we’re deeper in debt and they are none the wiser.
The Colorado economy is booming now compared to during the recent recession, but because of a 26-year-old tax policy embedded in the Colorado Constitution (informally called the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, or “TABOR”), Colorado cannot invest all of its tax revenue to make up for cuts made during those harder economic times. Instead, the amendment says that all revenue collected above an out-of-date cap must be refunded to Colorado taxpayers. Each taxpayer received a refund of $13 to $41 this year, while our state continued to cut funds for basic infrastructure and services.
More Evidence that Balanced Budget Rules Don’t Work as Well as Spending Caps
July 16, 2016 by Dan Mitchell
If you asked a bunch of Republican politicians for their favorite fiscal policy goals, a balanced budget amendment almost certainly would be high on their list.
This is very unfortunate. Not because a balanced budget amendment is bad, per se, but mostly because it is irrelevant. There’s very little evidence that it produces good policy.
Before branding me as an apologist for big government or some sort of fiscal heretic, consider the fact that balanced budget requirements haven’t prevented states like California, Illinois, Connecticut, and New York from adopting bad policy.
Or look at France, Italy, Greece, and other EU nations that are fiscal basket cases even though there are “Maastricht rules” that basically are akin to balanced budget requirements (though the target is a deficit of 3 percent of economic output rather than zero percent of GDP).
Indeed, it’s possible that balanced budget rules contribute to bad policy since politicians can argue that they are obligated to raise taxes. Continue reading