How Amendments 60, 61 and 101 Affect Our Children
Jim Shmerling, DHA, FACHE, President and CEO of Children's Hospital Colorado
As the political season heats up, you may have seen commercials or read lawn signs campaigning for or against Colorado Amendments 60, 61, and 101. In large part, these pertain to government spending and debt. But this legislation is broad and few have addressed the affect these amendments will have on Colorado's children.
Amendment 60 cuts school funding
Amendment 60 alters the state constitution to override local voters' preferences and cut school funding by more than $1 billion a year. It would also diminish funding for local voter-approved library districts, fire departments, police departments and other local services.
Amendment 61 inhibits public investments
Amendment 61 eliminates Colorado's ability to build or expand vital public infrastructure through public bonding. If passed, it would be difficult or impossible to build new schools, roads, hospitals, colleges, prisons, airports or sewer systems. Without functional infrastructure, Colorado will struggle to attract business investment, which, in turn, will prolong the recession.
Proposition 101 cuts funding for child health care and education and halts road and bridge repairs
Proposition 101 would ratchet down the state income tax over time to 3.5 percent (from the current rate of 4.63 percent), eliminating one quarter of this major funding source for education, healthcare, and more. It also eliminates a major source of road and bridge funding in Colorado by reducing the vehicle registration fee to $10. The registration fee hasn't been that low since 1919, a time when the state had only a handful of paved roads. No one likes paying for their vehicle registration, but without maintenance, Colorado's roads and bridges will quickly fall into a dangerous state of disrepair.
We are committed to the "Don't Hurt Colorado" campaign because we support funding for education and affordable high quality healthcare.
No matter your political persuasion, please remember to keep children top of mind when you vote this November. Keeping our children healthy only makes a brighter future for all of us.
Above all, please remember to vote.
If you have any questions about this legislation, feel free to email Zach Zaslow from Children's public affairs team.
And please do not hesitate to contact me with comments.