Support Your TABOR Team

Friends of freedom,

As the TABOR Committee approaches its annual business meeting on Saturday, November 15th, we thought to invite you to join our team.

If you are not currently engaged in an effort to advance liberty, please consider that you could make a difference with one to two hours per week of dedicated volunteering.  You likely would benefit too, perhaps building a resume’, gaining insights unavailable from the sidelines, and fulfilling your interest for successful activism and leadership.

The TABOR Committee and its sister organization, the TABOR Foundation, have been punching far above our weight, including initiating lawsuits against the Bridge Enterprise scheme and against the new RTD and Scientific and Cultural Facilities District taxes.  We filed an amicus brief in the Lobato lawsuit and acted in the federal lawsuit (Kerr vs. Hickenlooper) as the lead amicus in alliance with the NFIB’s national office legal team – the same outfit that filed the lawsuit against ObamaCare which ended with the Roberts’ decision.  (The Kerr lawsuit avers TABOR unconstitutional under the US constitution).  We also have taken tangential roles in the Aspen bag fee lawsuit and the lawsuit pertaining to the TABOR vote on the Gaylord Convention Center.  Our other ongoing volunteer work includes

– development of histories of TABOR campaigns leading to passage,

– producing a TABOR 101 introductory video,

– research and authoring a legal history of the various TABOR decisions over the decades,

– providing articles to the media,

– running a web site,

– presenting a break-out session at the Western Conservative Summit (completed – 2014).

We would like to build on that.  A deeper bench is needed, with more interested people involved so that languishing projects move forward.

My request of you is to become involved in policy & politics to preserve and advance the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights.  We need more help:

The committee that should be sending out a speaker’s bureau is moribund, because our Outreach Director’s professional life has taken a new direction.  We need a small team with the skills and attitude to schedule the speakers bureau, organize the speakers’ training, coordinate feedback and lessons learned.  If Bell Policy/Colorado Fiscal Institute soon launch a renewed attack on TABOR as expected, we will discover the libertarian/conservative movement is already behind.

We should recruit more support and organizing help in producing the TABOR 101 videos.

A major objective within our mission statement has gone unaddressed – the offer to support other states’ efforts to pass their own TABORs.  We have not followed up adequately on expressions of recent interest from Kansas, Florida and Arizona.  A leader with diplomacy skills and dogged determination would be a wonderful addition.

Citizens in Charge/Paul Jacob has planned to put national attention to TABOR during the coming spring with a series of different activities and a symposium.  We don’t currently have the volunteer time available to support his plan, coordinate and collaborate with him, and to create successful events.

If you are interested, please contact our Executive Director, Bob Foland, at or me at or telephone me at 303-233-7731.

Your response and support will be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Penn Pfiffner

One thought on “Support Your TABOR Team

  1. It seems that a defense of TABOR should focus on enforcing the provisions of that act as well as other sections of the Colorado Constitution that are being violated.

    I spent two years studying law with an emphasis on public finance law so as to address widespread abuses of taxpayers that occur only by violation of our laws. In that time, I have not run across a single attorney with enough skills to tackle some of the most basic violations of TABOR imaginable.

    For example, Larimer County over-collected a sales tax for capital construction in 2012. There is no defense. Over collecting a sales tax is the same as stealing. To make matters much worse, the over-collected revenue is now intended to be used to build a new County Building, but there is a big gap in the funding that no one knows how to fill AND the project has now been co-opted into a heinous abuse of tax increment financing being perpetrated by the City of Loveland that threatens to defund Larimer County even further.

    Please note that in this case, voter approval was necessary under 29-1-101 et seq prior to the adoption of TABOR. TABOR was most useful by providing a remedy for the violation that did not exist under the statute.

    I seem to have no choice but to litigate pro se, despite the fact that a licensed attorney would have an excellent chance of recovering his fees if I were to pay up front. The biggest threat to TABOR is the challenge we have abiding by rule of law and maintaining honesty and integrity in government, at least that seems to be where the battle line is drawn in my world.

    For the most part, I think that governments fear TABOR and avoid violations, but that fear is probably abating. In the example I described above plus others, the attitude appears to be “it is only unlawful if someone sues”. As the probability of getting sued decreases the meaning and effect of TABOR on our society will undoubtedly decrease.

    Therefor I offer up a suggestion for an additional task to be considered .. that of increasing the odds that violations of TABOR will not go unchallenged. Towards that end, I can pledge assistance to others that find themselves looking at situations where violations of TABOR have injured the public interest.

    Eric Sutherland
    (970) 224 4509

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