At the Chamber we work to deliver not just great jobs, but a great quality of life. The failure of Proposition 110 means we won’t see major improvements in our transportation experience anytime soon. It’s an understatement to say we are disappointed at the outcome of the vote.
Our concern is for all of us, as residents of this state, whose quality of life is being negatively impacted by our failure to invest in our infrastructure. In the next few years, we recognize that those local communities who can afford to address their own transportation needs will likely do so, which means our state and rural Colorado will never get the investment they need. We supported Proposition 110 because it brought our state together, offering a true statewide solution that addressed the needs of all Coloradans.
Our workforce is our greatest asset, and we’re committed to growing our own highly educated workforce. That’s why we supported Denver Initiative 300 – a first in the nation pay-for-success program to help more kids get the post-secondary education Colorado needs. Denver Initiative 300, Prosperity Denver, passed. It will dedicate a .08 percent sales tax increase to post-secondary scholarships for Denver high school graduates. The new funding will underwrite scholarships, based on a sliding income scale, for eligible Denver residents between the ages of 18 and 25 who have lived in Denver for at least 36 months. Students with a high school diploma or GED may attend a Colorado-accredited public or nonprofit two- or four-year college, university, community college or technical college. We thank voters for recognizing the need for an educated workforce and seeing how this can serve as a model for other communities in our state to motivate students to not only enroll, but complete these critical classes and degrees.
Here’s a recap of the other ballot issues we weighed in on:
We also supported Amendments Y and Z, which will make our congressional and legislative redistricting process more fair, engaging independent voters through commissions that will work to keep our districts competitive.
And, there were measures that we saw as threats to our state and its economy and were glad to see those issues defeated:
- Our smallest businesses were concerned about Amendment 73, recognizing while it is critical we fund education, this wasn’t the way to do it.
- Voters also saw the bad policy that would have locked a broad, vague takings policy into our constitution in Amendment 74.
- The defeat of Proposition 112 reinforces that as we value the benefits of producing oil and gas in our state, the Chamber remains committed to doing so with the highest standards to protect our residents and our environment.
While the election is over, the work begins with the next administration as we prepare for the legislative session that will kick off in January. We invite you to join us at the Legislative Preview and kick off the 2019 with party leadership on Jan. 3.
Kelly Brough is the president and CEO of the Denver Metro Chamber.