Letter: Vote yes on Prop CC
It’s no secret: Colorado has the best economy in the country. But despite record corporate profits and tourism revenue, one in four roads are rated as being in poor condition and almost 500 bridges have been labeled “structurally deficient.”
Colorado is constrained by $9 billion in transportation needs. In fact, we’re one of the worst states in road conditions and urban congestion, adding up to over $500 per-year, per-person, in car repairs.
How are we the best economy with some of the most woefully inadequate roads and bridges? It started almost 30 years ago when voters narrowly approved what were — and still are — the most restrictive state spending limits in the country. When our economy shrinks, like other states, we reduce spending. But unlike other states, when our economy rebounds, we can’t invest the funds we already collect, instead delivering that money in the form of a small rebate to individual Coloradans.
These rebates are projected to average $27-$44 per person next year. For many Coloradans that’s a lot of money, but Proposition CC is asking voters to pool these funds next year to the tune of $264 million for the state, and likely more in years to follow. With one vote we can untangle an outdated budget rule and invest the money the state already collects equally among three specific areas: Transportation, K-12 Education and Higher Education. That’s $88 million just next year, just for transportation.
If we can allow the state to invest this money it already collects, with no new taxes, we can improve the long-term health of the state.
Under Proposition CC, 40% of this money for transportation will go to towns and counties to invest in local transportation priorities. The other 60% will go to state transportation and transit projects.
Nobody’s taxes will go up under Prop CC. These are taxes that have already been paid. Unprecedented transparency and safeguards are written into the law. This ballot measure won’t fix all of our roads, tunnels and bridges or eliminate Colorado’s education inequities, but it’s a big step forward.
With a yes vote on Prop CC, together we can start fixing our bridges and roads. Together, with no new taxes, we can invest in Colorado’s future.
— Ryan Hyland, Chair of the I-70 Coalition, a non-profit organization representing 27 local governments and businesses along the I-70 mountain corridor
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