We fund and campaign hard on issues that matter to the CRE industry. Our leadership is committed to digging into the ballot items, even if you don’t want to. Your ballots arrive soon. Be ready.
Gallagher on the November Ballot; Your Clients and Your Vote
History – In 1982, the Gallagher Amendment became a part of the Colorado Constitution, setting the commercial real estate tax assessment rate at 29% and stating that commercial would make up 55% and residential 45% of the overall tax burden. At the time, residential had a 21% assessment rate. Over time, residential property values (compiled statewide as a whole) grew and grew – which has caused the assessment rate for homeowners to routinely decline in order maintain only 45% of the overall property tax burden. For this next property tax cycle, residential rates are expected to move from 7.1% down to 5.8%.
We Want Tax Certainty! – Amendment B, the Gallagher ballot item you will see this November, would repeal the current assessment setting system but not put in place any plan for the future. On top of this, a repeal of Gallagher from the Constitution would put assessment rate setting into statutory law or, in other words, would put the power of setting assessment rates in the hands of our elected officials. Elected officials in the statehouse, as recently as May, proposed a number of antibusiness bills.
Property Tax Setting In the Future – DMCAR is leading a coalition of six entities in preparing three policy bills for presentation during legislative session this January. Our goals focus on tax fairness, financial certainty and not leaving rural Colorado behind. We believe our industry can lead on property tax policy law that will create certainty for our owners and tenants – and can garner support from both sides of the political spectrum. Please share any comments with DMCAR CEO, Katie Kruger. More on this after the election.
Considering Your Vote – DMCAR takes the position of Neutral on Amendment B; it removes our current property tax rate setting policy but does not put forth a future plan. DMCAR’s resources are best used on creating this plan, not in ballot fight. We recognize there isn’t a neutral bubble to select on your ballot; a No vote maintains our current commercial assessment rate and it allows homeowners to see a decrease during a difficult economic time. While some argue a Yes vote will trigger a legislative policy that “freezes” our current rates in place, remember that policy could be changed at any time by our elected officials.
Become an expert:
An in-depth Gallagher discussion with Katie Kruger, DMCAR CEO; Elizabeth Peetz, Colorado Realtors, VP of Government Affairs; and Jim Johnson, Otten Johnson.
An economic study of the Gallagher proposal, Amendment B.
DMCAR is a NO on Prop 114; Gray Wolf Reintroduction
Proposition 114 aims to reintroduce the Gray Wolf to designated lands in Colorado. The Colorado agricultural industry is comprised of 14,000 farms that add billions of dollars into our state’s economy. Prop. 114 creates specific threats to the agricultural industry and our rural counterparts. Additionally, proponents did not follow the Colorado Way or, put another way, DMCAR more often supports policies which are forged through the hard work of gaining multiple viewpoints and proposals based in significant research and data. DMCAR is a No on Proposition 114.
DMCAR is a YES on Denver 2A; Climate Funding
Denver Ballot item 2A would increase the Denver sales tax by 2.5 cents on a $10.00 purchase, to raise approximately $40M toward climate goals. DMCAR leadership were tireless in opposing the original proposal, which would have placed the entire financial burden of this fund on the commercial real estate industry. Denver ballot item 2A shares the load and is a compromise that we can now support.
DMCAR is a YES on Denver 2B; Sales Tax for Homeless
Denver Ballot item 2B would increase the Denver sales tax by 2.5 cents on a $10.00 purchase, to raise approximately $40M to bolster homeless services across Colorado’s urban core. DMCAR led opposition to removing the camping ban, which maintains it illegal to permanently camp in public spaces. Our campaign claim was “We Can Do Better”. Funds will increase day shelter capacity, improve mental health support and direct housing for the homeless. We are a Yes on Denver’s 2B.
DMCAR is a NO on Denver 2E & 2G; We Believe In A Strong Mayor
Denver Ballot items 2E and 2G are designed to take power from the Mayor and give it to City Council. DMCAR believes in a strong Mayor form of government. 2E would allow City Council to determine Mayoral appointments and 2G would allow their interruption in City finances. Currently, appointments are vetted through a citizens committee and Denver has achieved one of the highest bond ratings in the country due to the Mayor’s ability to make spending decisions in a crisis. We are a NO on both 2E and 2G.
YES on Amendments Y & Z – Successful; Item passed
Y & Z make it so that the voters choose the politicians, instead of the politicians choosing the voters. These will make gerrymandering illegal and allow all voters to be heard, a process that will also bring forth Colorado’s best leaders. CRE says YES to Y & Z.
YES on Proposition 110 – Unsuccessful; Item did not pass
A modest sales tax increase leverages billions in funding for CDOT and local transportation. Well-maintained roadways are critical to economic growth, fighting congestion and accessing the Colorado lifestyle. CRE says YES to 110.
NO on Proposition 112 – Successful; Item did not pass
A ban on oil and gas in disguise, with an estimate loss to the state GDP of $26B annually and more than 147,000 jobs lost. 20% of the office space in our urban core is occupied by the energy sector. CRE says NO to 112.
NO on Amendment 73 – Successful; Item did not pass
A 78% tax increase on small business (read CRE brokers) and a new graduated income tax for Coloradans, all without spending and student outcome accountability. We support well-funded education but this is detrimental to small business. CRE is a No on 73.
Other guides from our partners:
Colorado Association of REALTORS (http://www.coloradorealtors.com/2018-ballot-guide/)
Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce (https://denverchamber.org/policy/ballot-issues/)