Apr 22

Ending Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights refunds a deservedly tough sell to voters

Sharf: Ending Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights refunds a deservedly tough sell to voters

TABOR opponents, bored with chipping away at the law’s foundations, have broken out the chainsaws. On the one hand, legislative Democrats are ignoring the plain language of TABOR and unilaterally enacting a universal income tax increase without a statewide vote, by calling it a “fee.”

Photo and copyright: Tony’s Takes

And on the other hand, they are proposing a ballot referendum to waive the law’s taxation restrictions. According to TABOR, any increase in general revenue above the previous year’s plus inflation and population increase must be refunded to the people. House Bill 19-1257 would remove that restriction, allowing the state to keep any and all tax revenue, forever.

In return, the money that was kept would go to transportation, transit, public education, and higher education. Theoretically, anyway. Such a deal might seem to have some superficial appeal to Colorado voters, but recent experience strongly suggests this may be a harder sell than proponents expect.

We don’t know where Referendum C dollars go

HB 1257 is Referendum C on steroids. In 2005, voters approved a temporary “time-out” from TABOR’s spending restrictions, allowing the baseline to grow at the inflation plus population formula regardless of what revenues actually did. Referendum C has allowed the state to keep about $17 billion, including over $1.2 billion in the last fiscal year alone.

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Apr 21

The Reagan Club Hosted Penn Pfiffner To Discuss The Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights

The Reagan Club of Colorado was glad to host Penn Pfiffner at April’s meeting to talk about the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. TABOR has kept Colorado fiscally healthy, but look for it to come under assault by the Democrats this year. Learn more about the work that The TABOR Foundation and TABOR Committee do at http://thetaborfoundation.org/.

Apr 18

Fiscal conservatives see priority problem in Colorado’s new budget

Fiscal conservatives see priority problem in Colorado’s new budget

FILE - Colorado State Capitol
The Colorado State Capitol in Denver, Colorado.

Colorado lawmakers last week approved a $32.5 billion budget to fund the government, but not everyone is cheering. 

The new budget includes $300 million for road funding, which took much negotiating between majority Democrats and minority Republicans. It also includes $175 million for full-day kindergarten, less than Gov. Jared Polis requested, and a 3 percent raise for state employees.

Budget writers also had to pull $40 million from some state reserve funds.

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Apr 17

TABOR Repeal Bill Passes Colorado House of Representatives without Single Republican Vote

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

202-380-7114 – MBLyng@NovitasCommunications.com

TABOR Repeal Bill Passes Colorado House of Representatives without Single Republican Vote

House Democrats’ attempt to permanently pocket taxpayer refunds advances on party-line vote

 DENVER, April 17, 2019 – Yesterday, Democrats in the Colorado House of Representatives voted to pass House Bill 1257, a measure that would require state taxpayers to permanently forego tax refunds in any year in which they overpay the state.

“Colorado Democrats claim that their proposed theft of taxpayers would fund critical services like education and transportation, but Speaker K.C. Becker admitted in a committee hearing that they couldn’t provide any assurances as to how this supposed ‘excess’ revenue would be allocated in the future,” said Amy Oliver Cooke, Independence Institute Executive Vice President and TABORYes coalition member. “This isn’t even the government’s money in the first place. It’s money that hardworking Coloradans overpaid into the system, as codified by our Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. Continue reading

Apr 09

Colorado Democrats look to pass more progressive legislation with four weeks left in session

Colorado Democrats look to pass more progressive legislation with four weeks left in session

FILE - Colorado State Capitol
The Colorado State Capitol in Denver, Colorado.

With four weeks left in Colorado’s legislative session, Democrats in the legislature hope to pass several more pieces of key progressive legislation. 

The Democratic-controlled legislature has had little trouble passing several controversial bills, leading to Republicans and grassroots groups calling for voters to recall some of the lawmakers behind the pieces of legislation that opponents say don’t represent the views of citizens.

Democrats control both chambers of the General Assembly, and Democratic Gov. Jared Polis supports a vast majority of legislation Democratic lawmakers have passed or plan on passing.

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Apr 03

Join The Reagan Club on April 11th to hear Penn Pfiffner explain the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights

Colorado voters in 1992 authorized TABOR so that citizens would have to say yes or no on tax increases. Over the years voters appreciate this simple and effective check on out-of-control, tax-and-spend politicians. Colorado is one of the best states economically thanks to TABOR.

So, what is TABOR and how does it affect you?

Penn Pfiffner, former state legislator and currently the Chairman of TABOR, will provide a TABOR 101 discussion with time for questions.

Admission is $5 for Reagan Club members and $10 for non-members. The doors open at 6:00pm with food and drinks available to order from CB & Potts. The meeting begins at 7:00pm and should be over around 8:30pm. You can order your admission tickets online at the Reagan Club website, www.ReaganClubCo.com/meeting-tickets

 

Thursday, April 11, 2019 at 6 PM – 9 PM MDT

 

 

C. B. & Potts – Westminster

1257 W 120th Ave, Westminster, Colorado 80234

Apr 02

Amid broader budget debate, a modest proposal for more Colorado school funding advances

Amid broader budget debate, a modest proposal for more Colorado school funding advances

PHOTO: Erica Meltzer/Chalkbeat
Colorado State Capitol

A bill that would ask voters to let Colorado keep more tax revenue — with a third of the money going toward schools — moved forward Monday, even as backers stressed that it is not a “cure-all” for the state’s broader fiscal challenges.

That uncertainty has education advocates watching nervously even though the proposed budget includes a major policy win: an $185 million set-aside to fully fund kindergarten starting this fall. If lawmakers and Gov. Jared Polis do put a lot more money into transportation, other K-12 programs could feel a pinch.

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Mar 11

Opinion: TABOR has united Coloradans

Opinion: TABOR has united Coloradans

PUBLISHED ON MAR 10, 2019 5:00AM MDT

Michael Fields@MichaelCLFields

Special to The Colorado Sun

In a growing partisan culture, there’s still something Coloradans ranging the political spectrum can agree on: the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights (TABOR).

In recent public polling, when given the simple, unbiased definition, 71 percent of registered voters in Colorado support TABOR, while only 28 percent oppose the law.

What’s the secret to this overwhelming popularity? First, Coloradans love being able to vote on tax increases. It’s simple: the government has to make the case to voters in order to get more of their hard-earned money.

Michael Fields

Second, TABOR provides guardrails for the size of government. The state budget still grows every year, but the growth is limited. TABOR keeps the government truly serving the people.

Over the past several years, voters have sent a message to state lawmakers by voting down the last six statewide tax increases on the ballot — most by huge margins.

But this hasn’t stopped lawmakers and progressive special interest groups from developing workarounds in the form of fees, enterprises, and lawsuits to allow the state to spend more taxpayer money. Continue reading

Mar 07

Democratic lawmakers want to ask voters in 2019 to end TABOR cap, but Polis is not so sure

Democratic lawmakers want to ask voters in 2019 to end TABOR cap, but Polis is not so sure

The measure would amount to the most substantial effort in years to rollback the state’s unique limits on government spending

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