August 14, 2018
Boulder County Commissioners support “Let’s Go, Colorado,” a statewide ballot initiative to increase funding for state and local transportation needs
County Commissioners Support Initiative #153 – “Let’s Go, Colorado,"
Oppose Initiative #167 – “Fix Our Damn Roads!”
(Boulder County, Colo. -- Aug. 14, 2018) -- The Board of County Commissioners today approved a formal resolution (Resolution 2018-88) in SUPPORT of Ballot Initiative #153 – “Let’s Go, Colorado,” a citizen-generated initiative to fund needed transportation improvements throughout Colorado and in Boulder County, specifically.
The county commissioners also took formal action to OPPOSE Ballot Initiative #167 – “Fix Our Damn Roads!", citing its lack of funding and exclusion of transit options.
Both initiatives are likely to qualify for the statewide ballot in November 2018, and the commissioners have expressed concern that having both measures on the ballot could create confusion for Colorado voters.
Statement by the Board of County Commissioners on Initiative #153 – “Let’s Go, Colorado”
Ballot Initiative #153 would increase funding for state and local transportation needs by increasing the state sales tax by 0.62% for twenty years, or about six cents on a ten-dollar purchase. Projects that would benefit Boulder County are outlined in Resolution 2018-88.
Ballot Initiative #153 provides a thoughtful and balanced solution in addressing Colorado’s transportation funding shortfalls and provides for the mobility needs of all Boulder County residents, workers, and visitors. Should Initiative #153 qualify for the 2018 state general election ballot, we strongly urge community members to vote FOR the measure.
Individual County Commissioner Statements on Initiative #153
“The transportation system in Colorado is woefully underfunded,” said County Commissioner Elise Jones. “This initiative, if approved by voters, would greatly improve mobility options for residents of Boulder County and the State of Colorado.”
Jones added, “The projects listed as part of Initiative #157 reflect those included in the Northwest Area Mobility Study, an exhaustive, collaborative regional effort undertaken by us and our northwest area government and transportation partners, which we unanimously endorsed.”
Jones also added that northwest commuter rail would be eligible to be funded with the initiative’s multimodal dollars if the project is deemed cost-effective and feasible to build.
“While the measure will not solve all transportation issues in the state, Initiative #153 is a good step in the right direction,” said County Commissioner Deb Gardner. “The projects listed as part of the initiative would move us much closer to a modern, safe, and efficient 21st century transportation system that is essential to Colorado’s quality of life and the health of our economy.”
County Commissioner Cindy Domenico agreed with her colleagues and noted that the list of projects to be built with the new revenues would do a lot to benefit Boulder County residents by improving the Diagonal Highway, State Highway 7, State Highway 287, and State Highway 42, as well as many of our local needs.
“Chronic underfunding of our transportation system has been apparent for years, and Boulder County has undeniably suffered from that lack of funding,” Domenico said. “Through a lot of hard work and heavy lifting from our transportation staff and municipal partners, the county has put forward a list of projects under this initiative that would make a real difference in addressing the local, regional, and statewide transportation needs of Boulder County residents.”
Statement by the Board of County Commissioners opposing Initiative #167 – “Fix our Damn Roads!”
Another proposed ballot measure that addresses transportation funding is Initiative #167 which would authorize bonds for transportation projects.
The Boulder County Commissioners oppose Initiative #167 because it endorses an irresponsible way to run government. It approves a bonding measure without identifying a new stable source of revenue to pay it back. It’s like borrowing to buy a house without the means to make the payments.
We also oppose the initiative because it has the potential to decrease the already limited amount of money CDOT has available to maintain its existing transportation system, and it specifically excludes funding for transit projects, which make up such a huge part of the mobility needs here in Colorado.
We urge voters to vote AGAINST Initiative #167 should it make its way to the statewide ballot this fall.