Ed Bittle: Colorado’s economy vs cutting taxes and services
October 8, 2010
To the Editor:
A recent Denver Post headline, “Most Coloradans Agree That The Economy Trumps All Other Concerns,” begs candidates and voters to consider the consequences of proposals to cut taxes and services by constitutional amendment and candidates’ proposals to do the same.
Some candidates for state office are running on job creation and economic development while at the same time proposing to reduce or eliminate governmental services and the financial resources to support effective government.
These candidates are short of specifics as to what services will be cut or what infrastructure will not be built or maintained. They seem to ignore the existing and looming budget deficits and the consequences to all Coloradans if government cannot do what needs to be done to do what citizens cannot do themselves.
Amendments 60 and 61 and Proposition 101 would reduce support for education and make it difficult or impossible for school districts and universities to provide quality education in this state. Proposition 101 will make it difficult or impossible for schools, cities, counties and the state to build or maintain needed infrastructure. What business will want to remain in or relocate to a state that every year considers such proposals?
Colorado’s future economic sustainability and growth and job creation must be based on superior governmental services; a first class educational system, dynamic university teaching, research and public service; quality roads, bridges, transportation and a clean environment; efficient and sufficient public utilities (sewer, water, electric and gas); an efficient health and welfare system; and a justice system that is not overburdened by an uneducated or under-educated populace.
Colorado’s future economic health will depend on a strong state and local government and education system supported by adequate tax and revenue resources. If Coloradans, and the candidates, really believe in a strong state economy, job creation, fueled by economic growth, they must stop bashing government and government officials and the tax system and focus on those things government must do to provide the services needed to support its citizens and the businesses that provide jobs and that really do support a strong state economy.