Backers of a measure to raise taxes for education submit petition signatures
DENVER, July 11, 2018 — The backers of a proposed constitutional amendment that boosts income taxes to raise money for education today turned in signatures to the Secretary of State’s office.
The signatures for Initiative 93, as it is now called, are the first to be turned in this election season in an effort to get a measure on the Nov. 6 general election ballot. It is also the first initiative where supporters had to collect signatures in all 35 state Senate districts as required by the 2016 ballot measure “Raise the Bar.”
Initiative 93 involves a complex formula for raising income taxes among the state’s top earners.
Colorado allows citizens to put issues on the ballot after going through a process that includes reviews by staffers with the Secretary of State, the attorney general and Legislative Legal Services. These reviews do not determine the merit of the proposal, only if it meets state standards to attempt to get on the ballot.
Although the signatures for Initiative 93 were due today, most proponents face an Aug. 6 deadline to turn in 98,492 valid voter signatures, which is 5 percent of the total votes cast for all candidates for Secretary of State in the 2014 general election. A random sample of signatures is then conducted.
Voters two years ago approved Amendment 71, which makes it more difficult to amend the constitution. In addition to requiring that signatures come from 2 percent of voters in each Senate district, the measure also required constitutional amendments to pass with a 55-percent majority rather than a simple majority. That led to a court challenge, which is still pending.
Some of the ballot measures for this election cycle amend the constitution, others change state statutes.
To examine the measures, go to the Initiative Filings, Agendas & Results link on the Secretary of State web page and the first set of measures marked “Approved for Circulation.” When you click on each measure, there will be a link marked “hearing result.” Click on that link and the ballot titles will say whether it is a proposed change to the Colorado Constitution or state statute. Measures that change statutes require a simple majority to pass, and there is no 35-Senate district requirement.